Do I need to wash clothes often and thoroughly?
- The less frequently we wash our clothes, the longer they last.
- If there is just one small stain on your garment, this could be spot cleaned to save going into the wash.
TIP: Kate in our product development team hangs her clothes up at the end of the day to air before putting them in the wardrobe the next morning.
- Always follow the wash care instructions to get the best out of your garments.
- To maintain colours and reduce abrasion and pilling, garments are best washed inside out.
- We recommend washing at 30°C on the shortest wash cycle.
- A mild detergent should be used in the wash, preferably one which is biodegradable and non-biological - the enzymes present in biological detergent can be harmful to knitwear.
- Fabric conditioner should be avoided – especially for towels and knitwear, as it affects the absorbency and breathability of these items. It can also trap odours as well as leaving a film of silicone on your garments.
- Use our Guppy Friend wash bag which reduces micro plastics from entering our precious water sources.
TIP: Instead of fabric conditioner, try adding a cup of white distilled vinegar to the drum, this not only keeps clothes lovely and soft it also makes towels soft and fluffy.
- Nothing beats the smell of freshly washed, line-dried clothes, unfortunately, we don’t always have the weather for that here.
- When clothes need to be dried indoors it is still best to hang them rather than using the tumble drier. The intense, prolonged heat from a tumble drier can fade colours and shrink fabrics.
- When drying clothes inside, we recommend using a clothes airer in a well-ventilated room.
- Check the care label before ironing a garment, and always iron a printed garment inside out.
- As well as melting synthetic fabrics, ironing on too high a heat can cause permanent damage to the colour or stretch of a garment and give a shiny effect called ‘glazing’.
Traditional dry-cleaning chemicals have been shown to have a negative impact on the environment. Therefore, we recommend either asking your local dry cleaner to professionally wet clean, or if you are near a Johnson Cleaners, they have an eco and fabric-friendly alternative to dry cleaning chemicals called GreenEarthâ.
Keeping whites white
- Bicarbonate of soda is a great and natural way to remove yellowing, it can either be applied directly to the drum of a white-wash or combined with a little water to make a paste which is then applied to the problem areas of a garment, left to dry, then put in the wash.
- If you need something with a bit more strength, sodium percarbonate, a natural and eco-friendly bleach could help.
Dealing with stains
Certain stains can be bothersome, and certain stain removers can negatively impact the appearance of your clothes, but before you give up hope, perhaps some of the following ideas could help:
- Bicarbonate of soda is great for stains, make a paste with water and apply to the area and leave to dry before going in the wash.
- Washing up liquid is excellent at tackling oil or grease-based stains, be sure not to rub the stain too much though, or the damage will spread.
- A hot iron over a tea towel, or dry cloth can also absorb oily stains.
- Our mail order manager Paula swears by using micellar water to tackle make-up stains, apply a small amount to a cotton wool pad and dab until clean.
- Rubbing alcohol can be good to removing ink or pen stains.
- Table salt can be a great abrasive for getting out stains, just be sure to rub gently.
How to store your clothes
Being able to store clothes properly is always space dependent but there are some rules that should always be followed to ensure clothes keep looking their best:
- Be sure to use good quality hangers, these will help to keep the garment’s shape.
- Knitwear should be folded, not hung.
- Always ensure clothes are completely dry before being stored, (even a small amount of dampness can cause a musty smell, and in the worst cases mildew or even mould growth).
- Clothes should always be stored out of direct sunlight; the sun’s natural bleaching properties can fade colours.
- If you live in an area prone to moths and have a lot of wool, cashmere or silk, and the thought of a moth ball sends you recoiling, then do not fear, cedar is an incredibly effective natural deterrent. It works in ball or block form, or with the essential oil.
When all else fails
When your garments have reached the end of their life with you, this doesn’t mean you need to reach for the bin. If the clothes are still in good condition, then consider swapping, selling, or taking them to charity. If they have seen better days, they can go into the clothing bins you might see in your local supermarket car park or at the recycling centre; these clothes are sorted and depending on the level of damage, they will be reused or recycled. Some of the clothes that go into the clothing bins can be resold for charity or might get a new life as filler in mattresses or upholstery.
If you have any tips or tricks we have missed, then we’d love to hear from you.