Laundry is a chore that no one really enjoys doing. It’s a part of life that you want to deal with as quickly and as mindlessly as possible. The less attention you need to give it, the better it is. But such an approach might be costing you when it comes to your underwear.
The thing is, laundry is probably the number one factor that destroys fabric over time. From washing to drying, laundry wears out your clothes each time. And the thing that probably gets washed the most are your underwear, because no matter what, you have to put them in after use.
All of this leads to the fact that laundry is literally destroying your underwear gradually. It breaks down the fiber, which makes the fabric weaker, and that means it hangs loose more often, and it will become more susceptible to wear and tear. All of this leads to increased costs in buying more underwear to replace old ones.
The one thing you can do for your underwear that will do most to increase their lifetime is to get the washing right.
Hand wash your laundry
Hand washing is hands down the best thing you can do for your underwear. The thing about laundry machines is that it’s all quite rough on the clothing. They cycle the clothes rapidly in the machine and then all the clothes just rub against each other, sometimes getting tangled into a ball, which may stretch and tear them. All of this is strain and tension on the fabric that will weaken it faster.
But when you hand wash, there’s none of this. The force that you rub your clothes together with while doing hand laundry is nowhere near the incredible pressure that a washing machine applies during its cycle. Thus, hand washing is great because it deals with your underwear most delicately, leading to the least amount of damage to the fabric as possible.
Pick the right laundry options
Of course, we understand if you don’t want to hand wash. After all, why bother to do it if you have a laundry machine? Besides, hand washing really is a bore, and it makes the chore of laundry that much more time consuming. It certainly isn’t as simple as just popping the clothes in, pouring the detergent, and then pressing the button.
What you can do is to use the laundry machine but in the correct way. First thing to do is to put your underwear in a separate load and pick the delicate cycle option on your laundry machine. This basically lessens the physical stress that goes on your underwear while they are being washed.
You can also try putting each of your pair of underwear in a mesh bag of its own. This is a bit time consuming and will involve the additional cost of buying those mesh bags, but it will prevent the fabrics from clashing inside the laundry machine.
Air dry your underwear
Machine dryers are associated with most types of fabric damage during your laundry process, and this is because they apply a high amount of heat in a short time. This weakens the fiber, and that leads to damaged fabric.
Air drying could be much more effective in making your undies last longer, because it’s a gentler process. There is no blowing hot air or tumbling happening.
If you do hang your underwear out to dry, then make sure to keep it somewhere with sunlight. Not only is sunlight great at drying things, it’s also very effective at killing bacteria that might be left on your underwear.
Pick the right detergents
Lastly, you should pay attention to what laundry detergent you are using. Many laundry detergents are very rough on the fabric, and you have to be picky about which ones you go with.
Begin by going with the hypoallergenic option. This is less about the fabric itself, and more to make sure that the detergent is gentle on your skin. Your private parts have the thinnest skin on the body, and if you use strong detergents, it may irritate your skin when you put on the underwear.
Then, try to pick detergents that are labeled as ‘delicate’, and make sure that they don’t contain any bleach, phosphates or any enzymes. These are very harsh on your clothes and can cause fading, fibre breakdown, and other damages to the fabric.
This is also very important if you do decide to do handwashing. You don’t want to get your hand inflamed because there was bleach or other harmful chemicals in the detergent.
Avoid bleach at all costs as it’s harsh on your skin. Many people turn to bleach when trying to whiten garments, thus an easy way to avoid using bleach, is to avoid buying white underwear.
All in all, it’s a trade off. You can pay better attention to how you wash your underwear so you can make them last longer, or you can just let them fade and get new ones. If the cost is not much to you, maybe proper washing isn’t too big of a problem. But if you do want to save money over a long period of time, it will definitely be worth it.