“It’s super important to care for them [delicates] properly” – Kate, designer of Kat the Label
Delicate items like lace and lingerie have a polarising effect on many people. After all, the dainty, fragile fabrics that are so alluring to look at and soft and smooth to wear, are the very same ones that give us so much stress and hassle when it comes time to turning our attention to the washing and drying process.
The bad news: You can’t escape the need to do laundry, especially where underwear is concerned.
The good news: You can implement some small tips into your daily or weekly routine to streamline the overall process.
If your care labels have started to feel a bit like the menacing thorns that spear treacherously through the beauty of the roses, never fear. These handy tips, tricks and hints, compiled with a little help from Kate of Kat the Label, will keep you covered!
Washing delicates in the washing machine:
Machine washing lace or silk is never recommended, as it exposes the fabric to harsh agitation that increases the risk of damage and reduces the longevity of your clothes. Nevertheless, if you absolutely have to machine wash your delicates, you can take as much precaution as possible by:
- Using a front-loader washing machine, which tends to be gentler on clothes than a top-loader.
- Washing items of like colours in delicate-specific laundry bags to prevent snagging.
- Fastening hooks/clasps and tying down loose embellishments to prevent fabric tears.
- Choosing a cool, gentle cycle.
- Opting for delicate-specific laundry detergent.
- Removing items from the washing machine immediately after the washing cycle.
“I know from experience that throwing them [delicate clothes] in the washing machine is never a good decision … Garments with fabrics as delicate as mine can get caught on other garments, zips, hooks etc., which can tear the fabric. The actual spin cycle of the washing machine can also damage the fabric as it was not designed for such conditions” – Kate, designer of Kat the Label
This is the best option when it comes to caring for your delicates, as it's gentler on sheer fabrics and thus reduces the risk of tearing and other damage. Hand washing is also the best way to preserve elasticity, keeping your clothes looking new and feeling fresh, many washes in. Hand washing, however, is not without its perils, so be sure to wash as efficiently and safely as possible by:
- Separating your clothes into like colours.
- Washing light garments first so you can use the same water for darker garments later.
- Using cool or room-temperature water.
- Minimising the amount of detergent to prevent residue from building up on your clothes.
- Abandoning scrunching, twisting and pulling actions in favour of gentle swirling motions.
- Leaving to soak for only a few minutes.
“I ensure that garments are hand washed with delicate detergents and dried flat in the shade” – Kate, designer of Kat the Label
There’s no point putting in the effort to properly wash your delicates, if you’re not willing to show them a little love during the drying process, so to get the most out of your garments, be sure to:
- Avoid the dryer, which can shrink and breakdown fabrics, and bend wires.
- Keep your items out of direct sunlight to help preserve colour.
- Place wet garments on a towel and gently pat them down to expedite the drying process.
- Use a drying rack for super delicate items that you don’t want to pat down.
- Reshape items or dry flat when the care label instructs you to do so.
- Avoid ironing where possible.
To truly streamline the washing process, why not try out our new Allurette gentle washer? Combining the convenience of a machine wash with the gentleness of a hand wash, the Allurette provides the easiest, gentle care for the clothes you love to wear. In fact, this portable, electricity-free bag offers a machine quality wash in just three minutes, all while keeping the hands dry and the washing environment gentle!
“Hanging them [delicates] out to dry can also weaken and stretch out the elastic, which means the garment won’t last very long at all!” – Kate, designer of Kat the Label
“I love the Allurette bag! The experience overall was incredibly easy. It was quick, neat and I kept my hands dry. I found that with my little lacies this was the perfect way of washing delicately but thoroughly” – Kate, designer of Kat the Label
Regardless of your preferred method, the most important thing is to extend the life of the clothes you love by washing with care, leaving you free to incorporate even the most luxurious items into your daily routine!