If you look back at what you spent on clothing (for yourself, your children, and/or your spouse) over the last 12 months, it is probably more than you think! Clothes are expensive – so this year, resolve to take better care of them so that they last longer. With that in mind, here are seven tricks for minimizing wear and tear on your clothing:
Empty the Pockets
You probably read this first tip in your mom’s voice — and mom is right! While loose change or small pieces of paper may not seem like a big deal in the washer, other items like ink pens or lipstick can cause impossible-to-remove stains. Sharper objects, like keys, left in pockets during washing or drying can also lead to holes in your clothes. Be sure to empty your pockets before you wash your clothes to make them last longer.
Close Zippers and Fasteners
While you’ve probably been told to empty your pockets, you may not know about closing your zippers. Getting in the habit of zipping your jeans back up when you take them off can actually help preserve your clothing. Open zippers can snag on other items during washing, which can lead to torn clothing.
Treat Delicates Delicately
Invest in a delicate bag this year, if you can. While they may seem like a waste of money, they aren’t! They actually keep your delicates from getting snagged or wrapped around the agitator in the washing machine, which helps keep the fabric altogether and prevents loose elastic down the line.
Wash Dark Clothing Inside-Out
Do you frequently toss clothing that has faded? If you’re struggling with fading, the answer may be to wash your dark clothing inside-out. This will help the outside of the clothing keep its color. This tip works well for dark denim too!
Adjust Your Dryer Settings
Don’t just throw your clothing in the dryer on the hottest setting. This is especially tempting when you are doing laundry in the laundromat and want to save a few quarters — but if you want to preserve the quality of your clothing, lower the temperature and increase the time for the best settings to keep your clothing in good condition.
Fold Clothing Along the Seams
It might “seam” obvious, but folding your clothing along the seams actually prevents stress on the fabric of the item. This will help protect it from developing holes. Folding clothes along the seams also avoid unwanted creases when you get ready to wear the item, and will also help it maintain its shape.
Learn Basic Repairs
If you do end up with a loose thread, small hole, or a missing button – learning how to repair those small things yourself can save you a lot of money down the line. Instead of throwing the item out, you can do a quick repair so that you don’t have to replace the item.
Whether you wash your items at home or in a laundromat, being mindful of these 7 tips will keep your clothing lasting as long as possible. Save money this year by investing more time into how you treat your clothing and less cash on replacing it.