It’s crucial for ourselves as well as the environment to ensure our clothes have a long lifespan. Don’t you hate it when your favorite clothes become faded or torn? Not only does it mean losing your favorite pieces of clothing, but it also means having to spend more money to replace it.
So what can we do to make our clothes last longer?
1. Don’t Over-Wash Clothes
Sweaters you’re wearing over a t-shirt don’t need to be washed after every single wear. The same goes for jeans, skirts and dresses.
If your clothes aren’t dirty and don’t stink, hang them back in your closet. You don’t have to wash your clothes every time you wear them. Just let them air out to help freshen it up and they’re ready to go again. This will help prevent clothes from fading and wearing out.
2. Protect your Clothing
Try and prevent dirtying your clothing by wearing protection when doing certain activities. If you’re cooking, wear an apron to prevent food or possible stains on your clothing. The same goes for painting, gardening and so.
You should also protect expensive pieces of clothing that you don’t wear often like suits or fancy dresses in a clothing bag when storing in the closet to help preserve them.
3. Follow Washing Instructions
You always want to follow the care instructions on clothing labels. They are there for a reason. So it’s extremely important to read these tags in order to learn how to wash each piece of clothing to ensure the garment’s lifespan is a long one.
Certain pieces of clothing need to be hanged to dry, or tossed in the dryer on a gentle setting. Maybe something can only be hand-washed. If you haven’t been following these instructions, chances are your clothes are wearing out a lot faster.
4. A Stain Remover Pen Is Helpful
Always carry a stain remover pen with you to tackle a stain when it’s fresh.
Alternatively, if you’re at home, wash it as soon as possible so the stain doesn’t set in.
5. Line Dry your clothes
Hanging your clothes to dry on a clothesline or a drying rack is a great way to preserve its quality and therefore extend its lifespan. It will also help reduce wrinkles and shrinking that could possibly happen from the dryer.
Not to mention that It’s also a better alternative because you’re saving energy by not using a drying machine.
6. Use a Laundry Bag for Delicates
Using a mesh laundry bag will help make sure your clothes don’t get ruined. Using them for certain types of clothing like lingerie and delicate fabrics is important for ensuring that the clothes last longer. Underwear can easily get caught in other pieces of clothing or on zippers which may cause them to become damaged and ultimately thrown away.
7. Zip & Button Up
Zippers can easily tear apart soft fabrics. Zip up your sweaters and jeans before tossing them in the laundry machine to prevent damage while washing them.
The same goes with buttons. By doing this, you’re reducing the chance that your clothes will get caught or tangled.
8. Turn Clothing Inside Out
Turn your clothing inside out prior to throwing them in the laundry machine to reduce fading and preserve prints from cracking
9. Don’t Stuff the Laundry Machine
If the laundry machine is stuffed, it won’t wash your clothes properly. Also, the clothes will rub up against each other which may damage and fade your garments.
You should also be washing your clothes in cold water to prevent fading, shrinking and stains from setting in. It’s also more eco-friendly since it takes less energy!
We should also note that you don’t want to wash with a small number of pieces because it’s a waste of energy and water.
10. Add Salt
Adding a pinch of salt to your laundry can prevent clothing from fading, it can also help bring the color back to your bright colored clothes
11. Store Clothes Properly
Closets usually have doors for a reason, and that’s to keep clothes in a cool and dark area to preserve them. Do not keep them exposed to sunlight as they will become permanently faded.
You also want to make sure that you’re storing your clothes in a cool and dry environment as to not risk mold.
12. Learn to Repair your Clothes
Be more sustainable with your clothing. A little sewing knowledge can go a long way. You don’t need to throw away clothes because a button fell off or there’s a small tear. Learn how to fix your clothes so that they last for many years!
13. Get Brighter Whites with Vinegar
Use vinegar to get your whites brighter. The smell can be strong, but it’s a safe-alternative to bleach.
These tips about prolonging the lifespan of your clothing are super important for creating a more sustainable wardrobe when starting to practice slow fashion.