You might think washing clothes is just dumping clothes and soap in a washing machine then hitting the start button. Unfortunately, this is correct but only to a certain extent. There are different types of fabrics and materials that have different washing instructions and rules for washing.
We have outlined the biggest rules in this list, so you can preserve your clothes and their integrity. No one likes stained shirts or loose collars, but luckily this can all be prevented. Keep reading to learn about how often you should wash your clothes!
10 Gym Outfits (1-3x)
Your gym outfits should be washed every one to three wears, and this is entirely dependent upon how much you sweat. If you are only doing leisure activities like walking or just wearing them to run errands, then you can stretch the number to three wears before a wash.
If you are sweating profusely and your clothes are obviously damp or sticky at the end of a workout, then they should be thrown right into the washing machine when you get home. When you wash these clothes too often, they can begin to wear out before their expiration date, due to the type of fabrics used in these clothes.
9 Jackets and Coats (1-2x per season)
Your jackets and coats should only be washed once or twice per season. This usually entails a wash about halfway through and at the end of every fall or winter. It is also important that you know exactly what type of coat you are washing. Your peacoat should never be thrown in a washing machine and should be taken directly to a dry cleaner.
The coats that have hoods lined with faux fur should be removed when possible, as it can ruin it. If you have a Canada Goose Jacket then be warned that they can be extremely hard to clean due to their particular build. You should call around and see who will accept them to save you the hassle of driving around to find someone who will take it.
8 T-Shirts (1-2x)
T-shirts should be washed after you have worn them once or twice. The reasoning behind this is because they come into contact with your armpits and sweaty upper body usually for an entire day. After one use it can begin to smell, which is why it's best to throw this into the washer.
It is important to separate these by color before washing, as mixing lights and darks can end in a horrible mess if a color decides to bleed. These should be thrown in the dryer, but if they are at risk for shrinking then try a delicate cycle or hang them to dry.
7 Leather Should Be Wiped After Each Use
Real leather should under no circumstances ever be washed. This will ruin your expensive piece of clothing, but it doesn't mean you can't take care of it. You should wipe down the collar and cuffs after every use with a dry towel. Water can cause stains on your jacket, but if necessary you can use a small amount of water and dish soap on a towel to remove them.
It is also important to wipe away anything that finds its way onto your leather clothing immediately to prevent a stain from setting. If you feel it needs a deep clean then you can take it to a dry cleaner that specializes in leather cleaning, but it can be expensive. There are some synthetic leathers that can be washed, but it is best to check the care label or consult your local dry cleaner before attempting it.
6 Sweaters (5-7x)
Sweaters should only be washed after every five to seven wears, but it only applies to those made of cotton materials. You should hang dry them after they come out of the washer and fold them over a hanger. If you put it on a hanger normally it will stretch out the shoulders and cause it not to sit correctly on your body.
If your sweater is made of wool or cashmere then it should never be placed in your washing machine. These can only be cleaned by a professional dry cleaner as anything else will ruin the fabrics.
5 Suits and Silks (Never)
Suits and silks should never be washed, only drycleaned. The same goes for ties and vests as any contact with water can damage them. The number of times you take these to the cleaners depends upon how often and how long you wear them for. If you wear them all day, then every few wears they should be taken in for a cleaning.
If they are only worn on special occasions then once a year is plenty to keep these looking their best. It is also important to remember that dry cleaners do offer pressing services. So, if your suit or blouse is wrinkled from the months spent in your closet, a simple press will have them looking as good as new.
4 Jeans (6-7x)
Jeans are never the same after the first wash, which is why you should wait six or seven years before plunging them into soap and water. When you wash them too often it can lead to fading and the weakening of the fabric itself. A good way to protect your jeans is to turn them inside out, soak them in water, then put them in the washer with a gentle cycle.
You should hang them to dry to prevent shrinking and help them keep the firmness we love. If you feel your jeans are beginning to lose their appeal, you can throw them in the freezer for a few hours and it will make them feel as good as new.
3 Intimates (1x)
Your underwear and socks should be washed after one use, but bras are a different story. You can wear a bra three to four times before throwing it in with the rest of the dirty laundry. The best way to keep them from wearing out is to only wash them in mesh bags.
This protects them from being battered and pulled in directions that could cause harm to the simple elastic. Underwear can be quite expensive, so it is important that you protect it in any way you can to keep more cash in your wallet for other clothing purchases.
2 Fur is Tricky
Fur is something that can be difficult to care for, especially when it is real. Real fur should only ever be cleaned by a professional facility and stored someplace with a regulated temperature. Many of the shops who clean them, also offer summer storage for a fee. If your clothing is made of fake fur it doesn't get any easier.
Fake fur should be hand-washed and allowed to hang dry, otherwise, it can cause excessive matting which ruins the look of the outfit. If you decide to handwash it, it is recommended you brush the fur flat with your hand when you let it dry so the fibers are all running in the same direction.
1 Pajamas (3-4x)
There are some people who decide to forego clothing all together when it comes to bedtime, but for those of us who choose to wear clothes, we should wash them after three to four nights.
If you are a heavy night sweater then this number might be even less, but for the average person, this is a good rule of thumb. If you plan to stay in your pajamas all day you should probably change them before bedtime, as you have been moving around and sweating as you went about your daily activities.