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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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Join The Conversation
melda melda 10 years
i handwash most of my dresses
caitlinp86 caitlinp86 10 years
thank you :)
leeluvfashion leeluvfashion 10 years
Thanks Dear! This might come in handy since I have some items that need hand washing; although I might take them to the dry cleaner since I'm accident prone.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 10 years
rubialala I thought the same thing lol. I thought we were going to be told exactly how long we needed to lather etc. etc.
penguins268 penguins268 10 years
Thanks! This is great. I have a dress that has been sitting at the bottom of my hamper for a month and a half because I don't know how to hand wash clothes!
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 10 years
rubialala, :rotfl: This reminds me of all my delicates that have piled up and need hand washing.
rubialala rubialala 10 years
Ha! I thought this was actually going to be about washing your hands and I was very excited. Wow, I need serious help.
demonkitty18 demonkitty18 10 years
thanks for the great tips!
bookgirl bookgirl 10 years
I actually roll my sweaters up in a towel because it's easier to absorb the moisture and they won't take as long to dry then. The patting would be good for my delicate stuff though.
AlliJean AlliJean 10 years
my mommma taught me right! I love that towel patting tip. Thanks!
LaLaLaurie06 LaLaLaurie06 10 years
I always hand wash my bras and certain tops. I bought a rectangular bucket and fill it up with cold water in the bathtub. sometimes, the sink isn't always clean and the bucket is just much easier.
Tech Tech 10 years
These are great tips, thanks dear. I'm a hand wash freak when it comes to delicates.
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