Washing Winter Coats

8 Tips for Washing Winter Coats the Right Way

When was the last time you washed your winter coats and jackets? For many people, the answer is “never.” But it is important to wash larger coats twice a season and wash lighter jackets after every 6-7 uses. Even if they don’t have visible stains on the outside from puddles, snowdrifts, or other elements, they still pick up sweat, dirt, and skin particles that build up over time. Failing to clean them can make them more attractive to moths, cause itchiness, or even lead to rashes. Here are a few tips for cleaning your coats so you can keep them fresh and comfortable without damaging them in the process.

Follow the instructions on the tag. While there are many general best practices, it is important to check the tags on your coats for any special washing instructions. This helps ensure that you place them in the right temperature, cycle, and drying heat for each coat, reducing the risk of causing damage during the cleaning process.

Wash similar types of material together. Wash wool with wool, fleece with fleece, puffer coats with puffer coats, and so on. Mixing material types can lead to damage from rougher coats rubbing against more delicate ones.

Tie up loose ends. Zip up each coat completely before placing it in the washer. The jagged teeth of the zipper can damage other areas of the coat if left loose. They can also damage other coats in the wash. Be sure to secure any zippered inner or outer pockets as well. If your coat has buttons rather than zippers, be sure to fasten them before washing it. This helps keep the coat from losing its shape during the cycle. 

Treat stains before washing. Stains usually need to be treated with detergent or a special prewash solution before the coat is placed in the washer, especially if the stain has been allowed to sit for a long period of time. You may also need to use different treatments depending on what created the stain. (See our post on Tips for Removing Difficult Stains for more on this.) 

Wash wool coats and jackets by hand. Machine washing them can cause them to wear out much more quickly or shrink. If you do choose to put them in the washer, you must be very careful. Wash them in cold water on a delicate cycle. You will also need to use a detergent specifically made for cleaning wool garments to make sure it doesn’t damage the material. 

Although natural and knitted wool can be washed at home, it is important to note that some wool coats have inner linings that cannot be hand washed or machine washed. In these cases, the coat must be dry cleaned instead. Again, this is why it is important to check the tag for cleaning instructions for your particular coat before washing it. 

The machine washes fleece in cold water and uses a delicate or permanent press setting. Turn coats and jackets inside out before washing. Remember to zip or button them up to help them keep their shape during the cycle. Do not wash fleece with lint-prone items like towels or most types of cotton clothing. Fleece attracts lint like a magnet, so washing it with lint-producing material will cause a lot of work for you later. You should air dry fleece coats to get the best results. However, you can also put them in the dryer on low heat as long as you take them out before they are completely dry. 

Dry clean fur coats and leather jackets. These are typically not designed to be machine washed or even washed by hand. Never wash them at home. In particular, natural fur coats typically need professional attention and care by someone who knows how to clean hides without drying them out or causing the fur to shed.

Machine wash puffer coats in cold water. Do not use regular detergent: use detergent specifically made for washing down, or use another cleaning agent. Normal detergent flattens feathers, which can permanently reduce the warmth and fluffiness of your coat. Machine dry puffer coats on low heat. Toss in a few wool dryer balls, or 2-3 clean tennis balls, to help fluff up the coat while it is drying and make sure the filling is even in each section of the coat. You can take the coat out of the dryer a couple of times to check for clumps of filling and knead them with your hands to break them up. Ensure it is completely dry before taking it out to hang in a closet or on a rack.

Tips for Removing Difficult Stains

5 Tips for Removing Difficult Stains

Have you ever had to throw away a favorite shirt because of a stain that wouldn’t come out no matter how many times you washed it? Accidents happen, but they don’t have to spell the end for your best garments. Here are some tips for removing common types of stains to keep your clothes in great condition and help ensure they last a long time.

Wash stained clothes as soon as possible. The longer a stain is left on a piece of clothing, the more it sets into the fabric and the more difficult it will be to remove. If you wash your clothes before the stain dries, or at least the same day, there is a much greater chance it will come out easily. It is best not to set it aside to wait for laundry day.

Treat grass stains with cold water and detergent before washing. Soak your garment in cold water for a few minutes, then apply a little laundry detergent and use a paper towel or cloth to rub the stain off. It may take a few tries before the stain is removed completely. If this fails, you can try a stronger cleaning agent such as white vinegar. Grass stains can be particularly difficult to remove from jeans. Start by dousing the stained area with rubbing alcohol. After it dries, rinse it with cold water. Dab a little detergent on the stain and scrub it gently for several minutes with a cloth or paper towel. Rinse the area again, then machine wash your jeans as usual. The stain should disappear, leaving your jeans as good as new.

Clean white socks regularly.  White socks pick up dust and dirt that sets in over time, turning the bottom a dull gray color that persists no matter how many times you wash them. Fortunately, there are a few ways to restore your socks to their original brightness. Treat them with a stain remover before putting them in the washing machine. Follow the instructions the product comes with: you may need to leave the stain remover in for a certain amount of time before placing it in the washer, or you may even have to soak it in a solution of stain remover and water. If you prefer home remedies without strong chemicals, soak your socks in a mixture of 1 cup of lemon juice and 4 cups of water. The weak acid in the lemon juice helps draw the dirt out of the fabric and also acts as a natural fabric softener.

Remove tomato-based stains with cold water and an appropriate agent. Ketchup and tomato sauce are two of the most common stains. First, remove any residue by wiping it away. If the sauce is still wet, blot the stain with a wet paper towel or sponge. Soak it in cold water for five minutes, and then rub the stained area with laundry detergent. Next, apply hydrogen peroxide to the stain. Wash it in the highest temperature the fabric can comfortably handle, and your clothes should come out stain-free.

Take stained clothes to the cleaners. Cleaning professionals have years of experience removing stains, so they have the greatest chance of success saving your clothes. Make sure you tell the staff what caused the stains so they can use the appropriate treatments and get the best possible results. If you do not have time to take your clothes to a laundromat, inquire to see if they offer drop-off or delivery services.

Tips for Drying Your Clothes

5 Tips for Drying Your Clothes

Drying clothes the right way is just as important as washing them properly. Putting away clothes when they are still damp can lead to mold or mildew growth, which can cause permanent damage by eating away at the fabric. It can also lead to bacterial growth, which irritates your skin. Further, machine drying the wrong type of material can cause shrinkage or warping, ruining your favorite pieces of clothing. Here are five tips for drying your clothes to ensure they come out fresh, clean, and in top condition.

Inspect your clothes carefully before placing them into a dryer. Take a look at the front and back to make sure there are no stains or dirt left from the wash. The heat of a dryer can embed stains further into a piece of clothing and make them difficult or impossible to remove. If you find some clothing that still has dirt on it, set it aside. Sometimes a special pretreatment or multiple washes are needed to ensure an article is completely clean. It only takes a few moments to look over your clothes before you put them in the dryer, but this small investment can pay off tremendously by preventing a permanent or hard-to-remove stain. 

Check the label on your clothes for drying instructions. Some clothes can easily endure high heat for faster drying while, but others need to be dried on low heat. Some cannot withstand heat at all and must be air dried. Exposing clothing to a level of heat it is not designed to handle may cause it to shrink, lose shape, or take on permanent wrinkles. Additionally, be careful with shirts that have ornaments attached to the outside. Decorations such as sequins or beads can fall off or melt in a dryer. To get the best results, it’s important to follow the instructions on the labels of your clothes so they are machine dried as intended.    

Air dry towels partially to save electricity.Towels are designed to soak up water, so putting them straight from the washer into a dryer can require a large amount of time and electricity. Consider air drying your towels first on a hanger or dry rack until they are only slightly damp, then put them in the dryer for ten to fifteen minutes. You’ll save energy (and lower your power bill) while still leaving your towels fluffy and clean.  

Shake out clothing before air drying. Before putting shirts or pants on a hanger, take a moment to shake them lightly to straighten out wrinkles. This helps ensure they are crisp and smooth so you may not need to iron them before wearing them.

When placing shirts on a hanger, insert the hanger from the waist rather than the collar.This is especially important for cotton t-shirts. Cotton stretches when wet, so stretching a cotton collar even further to put in a hanger can cause it to lose its original shape. Inserting the hanger from the waist helps prevent the collar from being stretched out and ruined.  Alternatively, consider hanging your shirts on a clothesline or dry rack.


5 Ways To Get The Most Out Of A Drop-Off Laundry Service

Are you always busy and don’t have the time to do your laundry? Well, you shouldn’t worry because a laundry delivery service can help. They will pick up your laundry, wash it, fold it and then drop it off at your home. The laundry delivery service will save you a lot of time , time you can spend with family or use to take care of other business.

To ensure you have a smooth experience and get the most value for your money, you have to understand the best practices for using a laundry delivery service. Here is a list of do’s for using a laundry pickup service.

Sort your clothes. Most companies include sorting services in their package. These companies wash clothes separately, starting from the white garments, light ones and colored ones. However, you can sort the clothes on your own because you understand them better. There are clothes that you feel need extra care, especially delicate items. You can pack these clothes in a separate bag and attach a note to the bag, or you can inform the laundry attendant picking up your clothes.

Prepare your laundry thoroughly. Before you hand over your laundry to the laundry attendant, make sure that you have not mixed your delicate or dry cleaning fabrics with the regular ones. Empty all your pockets. If items are left in your pockets, they may damage your clothes or get lost during the washing process, and the laundry company will not be held responsible.It is important to be careful to empty the pockets of your clothes each time you use a laundry pickup service.

Make any special requests if you have any. You may prefer a specific fabric softener, bleach or detergent, or you could have items that need to be air dried. Making these special requests to the laundry company in advance can help ensure that your clothes are processed the right way and come back in top condition. You can either attach your preference to the bag, provide a note on your online form or inform the driver picking up your laundry. This way, you can rest assured that the laundry company will take good care of your garments.

Take care of stains. If you stain any of your garments, you should treat the stains immediately by using pretreatment laundry products. If you let the stain dry, it will be difficult to get rid of. Follow the instructions on the tags when treating your garments. If you are not able to eliminate the stain, you should find out if your laundry company offers stain removal services. Make sure to indicate what caused the stain so they can treat it effectively and remove it.

Confirm the cost. You must understand how you will be charged to avoid any misunderstandings. Different laundry service companies offer different pricing structures. They usually charge per pound for garments, but for large items such as duvets and pillows, they charge per piece. The cost of these services can also vary depending on your location. Additionally, if you use the delivery service, you will have to pay the delivery fee. Whatever the pricing structure of your laundry service company is, it is important to understand how you will be charged so there are no surprises when the bill arrives.

DO’s For Dry Cleaning

Top 10 Tips For Dry Cleaning Clothes

Most people take their clothes to the dry cleaners to freshen up delicate or sensitive clothing. Dry cleaning ensures that your clothes last as long as possible while maintaining their original condition. There are some best practices you should know when visiting a dry cleaner to get the best results.

Here is a list of dry-cleaning do’s that will guide you.

Check that you have the tags that came with your garments when you purchased them.The label has specific instructions for how to treat your clothing. Failing to follow the instructions precisely could cause expensive apparel to be damaged or ruined. Although most dry cleaners are professionals with years of expertise, giving them the labels will ensure they clean the garment exactly the way the manufacturers intended. The tags are essential for ensuring your clothing is properly cared for during the dry cleaning process.

Take stained clothes to the dry cleaners as soon as possible. This will make it much easier to get rid of the stain. If you leave the stained garment exposed to air, light and heat for too long before taking it to the dry cleaner, the stain will be much more difficult to remove. Don’t forget to tell the dry cleaners what substance stained your clothes so they can apply the best treatment to eliminate it.

Take your garments to the dry cleaners regularly. If you let dust particles, grease or sweat accumulate on your garments, they will not last as long, and their appearance will be negatively impacted. Before heading to the dry cleaners, take stock of all the clothes that need to be taken. Most people tend to overlook garments such as curtains, duvets, throw pillows and jackets. Always ensure that they are right side out so they are cleaned correctly.

Get to know your dry cleaner. Please spend a few minutes with them after dropping off your garments. Having a quick conversation can prevent confusion or problems later. It’s important to know details such as whether they offer drop off services or you will have to pick up the clothing yourself. You can also find out whether there are any available deals or discounts that may not have been promoted online.

Keep your ticket somewhere you look often. If you decide to pick your clothes from the dry cleaners, it’s important to keep the ticket in a place you see every day so you remember to collect them on time. If you leave your garments at the dry cleaners for too long after the collection time, you risk losing them.

Remove the wrap immediately. The dry cleaning process uses chemicals. These chemicals may not hurt your skin, but the pungent smell will irritate you when you wear the clothes. Hang the garments somewhere with proper ventilation so they can air out. Then the clothes will be clean as well as chemical-free.

Professional suits can require special attention and care. Here are a few tips to keep them looking good between trips to the dry cleaners so they can last as long as possible and stay in top condition.

Rotate your suits. Using the same outfit every day will make it show wear after a short time. Alternating which suit you wear every day will help them last longer and require cleaning less often.

Remove wrinkles with a steam cleaner before wearing your suit. Ensure that the steam cleaner is on low heat when in use. This helps you look your best and helps your suit and stay in great condition longer.

Brush off any dirt that could be clinging to your suit after wearing it. Leaving dirt or dust particles on your suit can cause them to become attached to fabric and make it more difficult to clean later.

Cover your suit up with a cloth that will allow circulation of air when you store it. Storing a suit in a plastic or airtight covering can cause discoloration or mold to develop. Using a breathable cloth protects your suit from dust and dirt particles while helping it to last longer.

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