Good quality underwear should last years, not months. But even the softest, most comfortable knickers and bras can lose their colour, shape and structure if you don’t care for your underwear properly. There are a few do’s and don’ts that every woman should know when washing, drying and storing underwear.
If you want your lingerie to look and feel good for longer, we’ve got some expert tips on how to care for your knickers and bras, to keep them in top condition.
Hand washing your underwear
Ideally, your delicates should receive special treatment, which means washing them by hand rather than throwing them in the machine with more robust items such as jeans, t-shirts and socks. Hand washing is a gentler way to remove dirt and stains from your underwear. It also prevents your whites from going grey in the wash.
Hand washing your underwear doesn’t have to be a chore. Fill the sink with lukewarm water and an alcohol free detergent, and leave them to soak for a few minutes (no longer than an hour). Use your hands to gently rub away dirt, before draining the sink and refilling with fresh water to rinse away the detergent.
What about the washing machine?
Let’s face it, few of us have the patience to hand wash our underwear every time, especially older bras and knickers. So for days when you do use the washing machine for your delicates, invest in a netted bag that can keep your lingerie separate from your clothes. This will prevent them from getting tangled, whilst protecting your washing machine from underwiring and hooks.
We all know to keep coloured items separate from whites, but if possible also try to select a ‘delicate cycle’ or cooler setting. You can fill this load with other clothes such as lace, linen, woven items and woollen sweaters, to keep your wardrobe in great condition as well as your underwear.
Drying and storing your delicates
To remove excess water after washing, don’t twist and squeeze your underwear - you’ll risk ruining padded bras or causing knickers and lingerie to lose their shape. Instead, lay them between towels and press gently to soak up water. Then, hang out to dry or place on the radiator. Avoid tumble-drying, as this can warp padding and reduce the elasticity of your underwear. However if you’re in a hurry, choose a low heat setting on the tumble dryer.
Choose an underwear drawer that has plenty of room for storage, to prevent knickers from catching and snagging in the joints. If possible, store moulded bras separately - one on top of the other - to help them keep their shape. It will also make it easier to find the one you need when getting ready in a morning!
If you’re constantly stocking up on new bras and knickers, follow these expert tips to care for your underwear properly. You’ll notice the difference when your lingerie looks as gorgeous as the day you bought it months later!