Sense of Aesthetic blogger Stephanie shares her tips on how to preserve your clothes for a longer lifespan
If you are anything like me, you probably have certain garments that are your favorites. These are treasures that I’ve had for years, and it’s a heartbreaking for me to see them loose their luster over time. Luckily, treasuring clothes and treating them gently is a great way to have a sustainable wardrobe. And so if you’re looking to extend the life of your favorite pieces, keep these tips in mind:
TRY A GREENER CLEAN: Green laundry care product are not only better for your health and the environment, they can also be more gentle on your clothes. Detergent that’s less harsh can result in softer clothes that don’t get dingy as fast. And dryer balls won’t leave behind the same clothes killing residue that fabric softener sheets do. Just be sure to follow all care instructions on the clothes’ labels.
TAKE CARE: I personally love steaming over ironing because I find that it’s less abrasive on all clothes and quicker as well. You can also use a few other shortcuts like turning jeans inside out while washing and throw clothes into a wash less to help extend the life of your garments.
BEWARE OF DRY CLEAN: Conventional dry cleaning uses super harsh toxins to clean clothes that are not good for you, the environment, or the lifespan of your clothes. Luckily, more and more eco-friendly dry cleaners are cropping up all the time, and quick search will help you find one that’s local to you. You can also try hand washing or spot cleaning to make clothes last longer.
MEND IT: Whether it’s a torn seam, lost button, or awful stain, there’s a lot that can be done with a piece that’s presumably had it before you toss it for good. Local tailors and cobblers can make your faves look brand new again, and even stains on faux leather bags and shoes can be removed with a sponge. Pinterest is a great resource for troubleshooting your wardrobe when something goes wrong. And if it’s really beyond saving, taking pieces to a local seamstress for up-cycling is always an option.
PROTECT YOUR CLOTHES: If you can afford it, invest in a HE washer that’s been designed without an agitator. And delicates (and anything that’s super special to you with lace or sequins attached), should be washed in mesh bags. This will help to avoid any pulls or tears.
STORE CLOTHES CAREFULLY: Once your duds are properly cleaned, your storage situation can go a long way towards preserving your clothes (or not). Avoid accidentally misshaping ensembles by investing in quality (read: not metal) hangers, and keep precious shoes and handbags in dust covers. Be sure to store all your clothes out of sunlight to reduce fading. And keep cloth-loving moths at bay with a closet freshener. You can make a quick one by tossing lavender buds into a small cloth bag. No flowers around? Try baking soda with lavender essential oil in that bag instead!