How to Keep Colors Bright for Years to Come
There’s a specific kind of sorrow that comes with watching your favorite piece of clothing start to fade from its original color. We’ve all had a blue hoodie that slowly turned grey or a pink dress that used to be bright red! Just like the Velveteen Rabbit, wear and tear is often a sign of love and being used again and again.
Unfortunately, the best way to keep your clothes looking like new is to wear and wash them as little as possible. But what’s the point of owning clothing you can’t wear?? Fortunately, there are ways to keep your clothing looking fresh and vibrant for years to come! Get the tips from the laundry pros at Hangers Cleaners.
Sort Your Laundry
One of the most important things you can do to keep your whites white and your blacks from turning grey is to wash like colors together. Darks, colors, and whites can all be washed separately to help them retain their color. When you’re washing colors together–blue, red, and yellow, for instance–you should consider using a color catcher to prevent any bleed from new or cheaper clothing. Yellows can turn orange and white patterns can take on a bluish tinge if you’re not vigilant.
Turn Your Clothes Inside Out Before Washing
While inside-out clothing can still absorb stray dyes, it can help reduce the effect dramatically. It also prevents your clothing from fading due to the general wear and tear of washing. Both washing and drying are rough on fibers. They’re being swirled and tumbled and smushed against the drums of the appliances.
This is an especially important step for pieces that have embroidery, vinyl decals, or other raised or applied details. Turning them inside out can protect the more delicate bits and help them last longer.
Wash In Cold Water
Dyes in the fabric of your clothes are set using heat. This means that heat in both water and air can break down that bonding little by little, resulting in faded, less vibrant colors. Detergents used to dissolve best in hot or warm water, but modern detergents have come a long way and work just as well in cool water.
Unless you need to sanitize the fabric for some reason, cold water should work for just about all of your clothing. And if you do need hot water for stain treatment or to kill germs, consider using a dry cleaner instead to protect the fabric.
Air Dry if Possible. Tumble Dry if Not.
Just as heat in water can cause colors to fade from fabric, so too can heat from the dryer. The best way to limit exposure to heat is to air dry your colorful clothing whenever possible. Use a clothesline or a rack to dry either indoors or outdoors. Just be sure to watch the weather or you may have to start all over!
If you’re in a hurry, or your environment is not conducive to air drying, use the lowest possible setting on your dryer to tumble dry. Consider separating truly special and delicate pieces and tumbling them together in a smaller drying load to reduce dry time. And remember, drying twice on delicate is better than once on high heat!
Use Dry Cleaning or Laundry Services
For truly special or extremely delicate items–especially if you don’t wear them often–consider dry cleaning to keep the colors vibrant and fresh! Dry cleaning uses special solvents and chemicals to clean without water or heat as needed for the specific fabric.
For more information on dry cleaning and laundry services in Little Rock, contact Hangers Cleaners today! We’re happy to answer your questions or help you set up a laundry service routine. We offer both pickup and drop-off services!