Make sure your clothes last longer by following these tips about taking better care of your clothes
With more and more of us aware of our individual impact on the environment, sustainable living has never been more important. With damage and stains to our clothing contributing to the global issue of textile waste, caring and keeping our clothing for longer means less waste, better value and a cleaner planet for us all.
And in addition to this, it appears the UK is becoming a nation of sentimental shoppers, holding onto clothing that reminds them of a memory, according to new research.
The survey of 2,000 people conducted by AO.com and LG, found that more than half (56%) of Brits have had clothes passed down to them by another generation, with 16 years being the average age of the oldest clothing item in our wardrobes.
In fact, Generation Z were the most likely age group to have had an item passed down to them, with 84% saying so.
Despite this, when it comes to caring for clothes, more than 1 in 3 (39%) said they’ve damaged an item of clothing before by putting it on the wrong setting on the washing machine/tumble dryer.
And a further 27% admitted they don’t know what every setting on their washing machine does, and which they should use for different fabrics, even though 39% admit they do always check the care labels before washing and drying clothes.
We can choose to buy more sustainable or higher quality clothing as well as searching out second-hand and vintage pieces too and we can make sure the clothing we own is worn longer by taking better care of it through its lifetime.
LG V Series laundry appliances care for your clothing. Thanks to the the AI DD™ technology that detects the fabric weights and types and automatically adjust the setting to suit the fabric, giving 18%* more protection to your favourite clothes. While the unique LG Dual Inverter Heatpump dryer also dries your clothes at a low temperature so you can avoid clothes shrinkage, prolonging the life of your favourite pieces so your clothing stays in your wardrobe for longer than ever.
While different kinds of garments will need different levels of care, here is our guide to making sure your favourite pieces stay in rotation in your wardrobe for as long as possible and create less waste overall. Remember to always check your label first to see what works best for each piece.
Ensure you separate your washing pile carefully and never wash your whites with any other colours. You’ll want to pre-treat any stains and wash on a hotter water cycle. You might consider adding a bluing agent to balance out any yellow stains. If you can, dry your whites outside in then sunlight as the ultraviolet rays act as a natural bleaching agent.
As you would expect, you’ll want to treat any black garments the opposite to how you might whites. Your fist step will be to consider washing these items less and treating any stains as soon as possible. Separate blacks out with only your darkest colours on a short cold cycle. Make sure you dry these indoors as they’ll likely fade quicker in the sunlight.
Make sure you always wash similar colours together and keep the whites far away from this wash load. Hot temperatures on your washing machine will be fine for pale colours but cold temperatures are best for the brightest shades to keep them from fading. Avoid drying your brightest, most saturated shades outdoors in the sun. It’s best to dry these indoors to keep them from fading.
Wool clothing should be hand-washed or dry cleaned but for synthetic or cotton knits, you can use a gentle detergent and set the machine on a short cycle and on a cool temperature. If you can, use a pillowcase or delicates bag and turn garments inside out to prevent pilling. Make sure to lay your knits out flat whilst drying and keep them away from any sunlight.
Due to its delicate nature, lace will need to be handled and washed with care. If there’s a lot of lace, it may be better to get it dry cleaned. If you choose to wash it, be sure to attach any buttons or snaps before popping it into the wash so it doesn’t catch on anything and tear or even better, use a delicates bag or pop it into a pillowcase first. Use a mild detergent, put the clothing on a gentle or handwash cycle with cold water which will prolong the life of both the colour and the fibres.
Faux fur is always best when stored in a cold space – just make sure you clean them at least once a year. Dry cleaning is often best for these pieces. For coats or jumpers, broad shouldered hangers will keep them in shape. Whilst in use, try to avoid any strong odours like cigarette smoke as it does like to linger on fur. Tackle any stains with a mild detergent as soon as it sets but never use harsh chemicals and always allow your faux fur to fully dry before storing it away.
Most velvet is dry clean only especially if the velvet is cotton or silk as the delicate fibres as well as the colour and shape of the garment can be ruined if washed. You can treat stains gently with a mixture of warm water and a mild detergent using a toothbrush to gently remove the stain. If the velvet is made from an easy-care synthetic fabric, ensure you wash it on a hand-wash function or a gentle cycle.
Check your label first as most silks will need to be professionally dry cleaned only. If washing is an option, you may choose to hand-wash your silk pieces in a gentle detergent in cool water or if it’s a synthetic silk fabric, try using a gentle cycle with a lower temperature.
Once again, you’re first port of call is to check the label. If your washing machine has an ultra-delicate cycle, turn the clothing inside out before washing and use a white pillowcase or delicates bag before washing in cold water and mild detergent.
*Tested by Intertek on March 2019. Cotton cycle with 2kg of underwear compared to LG Conventional Cotton cycle(F4V9RWP2W vs. FC1450S2W). The results may be different depending on the clothes and environment.
The best setting for your white clothes depends on what you need and the type of material. Warmer temperatures get rid of stains, but delicate fabrics might need a gentle cycle. The item’s care label shows you the best washing guidelines, so you can be sure things don’t get too hot to handle.
If you’re washing polyester, a warm setting will do the job. The fabric could shrink if the temperature gets too hot though, so it’s best to check the care label – now all your cosy cardis can get the TLC they need.