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The How-To Lounge: Hand Wash

All clothing is made differently -- things like jeans and sweatshirts are durable enough to survive many a wash and dry whereas silk blouses or knit delicates need a little more TLC. If you're new to hand washing, here are some simple tips to keep in mind the next time you stain your favorite white blouse.

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  • If you are hand washing non-delicates, fill your sink up with hot water (unless your care label calls for cold water) and add 1/4 cup detergent
  • If you are looking to bleach your clothing, add bleach to the water before your fabric is added to the mix
  • Immerse your clothing until it's saturated and soapy. If you have nasty stains, you might want to let your clothing soak for a while
  • Knead your fabric together and rub out any stubborn stains
  • Drain your sink and rinse thoroughly with the same temperature water until you no longer see suds
  • Wring dry and then lay flat to dry. Do not hang unless you want your fabric to grow
  • If you're handling delicates, aim for lukewarm water to prevent shrinkage and use a mild detergent like Woolite
  • Instead of kneading your fabric, simply swirl it around the sink gently until the water and soap mixture has had a chance to soak your garment
  • Once you feel your garment is clean, drain your sink and rinse thoroughly with cold water until all suds are gone and the water is clear
  • Pat dry with towels as opposed to ringing your garment dry. Lay flat and air dry

If you're unsure of your hand washing abilities, I advice you to send your delicates to the dry cleaner and leave the hard work to a professional! Good luck!


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