Sometimes you see clothes at the store, and it is love at first sight. You buy it, then wear it only on the best of occasions. After some time, the honeymoon phase ends, and your love for the garment begins to wane.
How you care for your clothes plays a significant role not only in how much you will like them but also in how long they will last.
1. Laundry Appropriately
Stains, creases, fading, and loss of shape are factors that make our clothes unattractive enough to throw away. The solution to all the aforementioned factors lies in how you do your laundry.
Below are tips on the best laundry practices:
- Deal with stains as soon as you get them using a stain removal pen or wipe. Prompt action decreases their chances of developing into stubborn stains.
- Sort clothes in separate laundry bags/baskets. Delicate materials like chiffon can easily be damaged by zippers or metal ornaments on other garments.
- Read the cloth label and adhere to its guidelines. If the label says do not dry clean, then it is best not to dry clean. Failure to do so would result in the garment losing its natural luster and form.
- Put fragile materials like lingerie in mesh laundry bags before dry cleaning.
- Go easy on bleach and detergents. Too much bleach damages clothes while excess detergent builds up on clothes making them dry and firm.
- Put just enough clothes in the washer; too many clothes increases friction rub on each other damaging them.
- Wash clothes with water at the appropriate temperature. You can get this information on the cloth labels. Hot water may cause clothes to shrink.
2. Iron Your Clothes
Contrary to popular belief, there is more to ironing than meets the eye.
There are three factors of utmost importance.
- The board: Use a firm flat ironing board covered with a thick, even cover.
- The iron: Inspect the ironing surface for stains to avoid staining your clothes. To this extent, there are advanced irons with self-cleaning systems and anti-scale plugs you can invest in.
- The fabric and heat: Different materials can handle different temperatures.
Silk, nylon and chiffon require the lowest temperatures. It is recommended that you put a pressing cloth over the delicate materials for that extra layer of protection.
Use high temperatures for cotton garments.
Spandex, polyester, lyocell, denim, rayon, and wool are materials that do not require ironing.
3. Store Properly
Clothes spend most of their lives tucked away in dressers or wardrobes. Make their stay comfortable, and they will reciprocate by continuing to look new and in shape.
Fold your clothes before putting them away. Folding is not the easiest of tasks, but it has to be done to avoid creasing and distorting clothes' shape.
Use polished wooden hangers. Thin metal hangers deform clothes, especially at the shoulders.
Button up zippers to prevent the zippers from damaging other clothes.
4. Take Care of Your Skin and Hygiene
If your skin is clean, your clothes will also remain clean and fresh.
Sweating is a natural process. Sweat is rich in minerals like sodium chloride. These minerals react with minerals in deodorants like aluminum then produce an unsightly stain on clothes. With time, the stains weaken the fabric.
As much as sweating is a normal physiological process, you can undertake several measures to reduce how much you sweat. These include keeping hydrated, shaving your armpits, and finally dressing for the weather.
Yes, there are materials more suitable for the summer heat. Cotton and bamboo allow free-flow of air while linen enables your body to conduct heat hence cooling the body,