Bras, shapewear, panties, and any type of lingerie, in general, is usually an expensive investment, and you would want them to last as long as possible. We wear underwear every day, yet we don’t know the best way to wash it.
There are many conflicting opinions when it comes to washing lingerie. Most lingeries are made of fibres that stretch and lose their elasticity over time, but washing them the right way can keep them properly fitted and looking as fresh as ever.
When washing lingerie, one needs to keep in mind the different types of fabric. Of course, it doesn’t make sense to wash your fancy Victoria Secret lace lingerie the same way you’d wash your workhorse cotton underwear.
Below are a few tips and tricks that will guide you on how to wash your lingerie the right way.
How to Wash Bras
There are some bra hacks every girl should know about. And, the most important among them is how to wash your bras. When it comes to bras, you can either hand-wash them or toss them in the washing machine.
If you have a delicate fancy bra, it is advisable to hand-wash it. Fill your sink with tepid water and detergent. Let the bra soak for a few minutes and then gently work through the suds through the material. Then you can rinse with cool water.
To get the excess water out of the bra, roll it in a towel before air-drying. After drying, remember to reshape the bra cups. And, make sure you never put your bras in a clothes dryer. Bras that have an underwire or gel padding should be washed the same way.
For sturdier bras, you can toss them in a mesh lingerie bag before throwing them in the washer. Wash on a delicate cool cycle and avoid the hot water. Hot water can break elastic. Use a gentle detergent, and again, never put your bras in the dryer.
How to Wash Panties
In general, the same rules are followed for washing panties. If your panties are delicate, made of sheer or ornate material, hand-wash them. Nylon, silk, and cotton panties are usually washed in a mesh lingerie bag in the washing machine.
For machine-washing panties use lukewarm water and a gentle detergent. This will prevent stretching and tangling. Always air-dry panties.
Any stains from panties (blood, lotions, discharge, and medicine) should be taken care of before washing.
How to Wash Shapewear
Shapewear is usually made of elastic fibers. To keep these fibres from stretching and losing their shape, shapewear should always be washed with hands even if the label says that it is machine-washable. Make sure you use a gentle detergent and not something that has chlorine bleach. Chlorine bleach can destroy the elastic fibre or the spandex. Air-dry your shapewear away from direct heat.
How to wash different types of fabrics
- Cotton lingerie
Cotton lingerie can be either hand-washed or machine-washed. But, if you decide to machine wash it, toss them in a mesh lingerie bag. It is also recommended to never wash your underwear with bath towels or jeans. The rough material from the jeans or the towel can destroy the delicate fabric.
There is no need to use special detergents to wash cotton underwear. Tide detergent works well as it cleans properly and leaves no odour. If you have stained your cotton underwear, stains can be taken out with vinegar or use the Zout Laundry Stain Remover.
- Mesh or Lycra lingerie
Mesh and lycra lingerie are usually machine-washable, but then again, they should be washed in a mesh lingerie bag. This prevents it from stretching, losing its shape and elasticity. Follow the same instructions as you would for washing cotton underwear.
- Beaded or fancy lingerie
Regular soap isn’t suitable for washing the finest piece of lingerie that you own. To wash your fancy, beaded or over-the-top lingerie, hand-wash it in warm water. Lather up the lining with body wash and rub the fabric together to clean it. Air-dry them by hanging them on a clothes rack.
And, if you encounter a stain situation, the safest bet is to take care of the stain immediately.
- Silk or lace lingerie
When it comes to the absolute touch and they will disintegrate beauties, one needs to be extra careful. Experts recommend hand-washing delicate underwear. Use special detergents such as L’Occitane Shea Butter Extra Gentle Soap, or Delicate Wash by The Laundress. Also, make sure you separate the dark colours from the medium neutrals and white. Always wash silk and lace lingerie in room-temperature water, neither hot nor cold.
Tips for washing all lingerie
Follow these general rules for washing all lingerie
- When you hand-wash, use cold or warm water except for silk and lace lingerie.
- For delicate garments, use special detergents.
- To remove excess water, never wring out the water or twist your underwear. Instead, use a towel to blot dry and then air-dry it.
- Never overload the mesh bag. There should be plenty of room inside the bag for your undergarments to move. If necessary, wash in two laundry loads.
- Avoid washing lingerie with fabrics that produce lint, such as fleece or terry cloth.
- When washing with hand, always separate the dark colours from the mediums and whites.
- Invest in a drying rack for lingerie.