Doing laundry seems very easy; put clothes in the machine, add detergent and run the cycle. But, there are some tips that can help you achieve perfect laundry. If you need tips to prevent your dark clothes from fading and keep them looking bright, you are at the right place.
Step-by-Step Guide To Wash Your Dark Clothes
Dark clothes need special attention during laundry because they are prone to fading, which reduces their life span and brightness.
Your dark clothes last longer and fade less when you wash them correctly. Here are some steps to wash your dark clothes:
1: Read Clothing Labels
Whether black, white, or purple, it’s essential to go through your cloth label for the manufacturer’s guidelines. For example, some clothes are meant to be hand washed only while some have to be dry cleaned. Read through the label to know the correct way to wash your clothes.
2. Wash Dark Clothes Separately
One of the golden rules to keep dark clothes from fading or bleeding into other clothes is by washing them separately from other clothes. Washing dark clothes together is a trick to maintain color so sort out your laundry before you wash. This includes not washing with white clothes or light-colored clothes.
3. Separate Cloth By Material
Yes, you should wash dark clothes together but do you know you also need to sort your dark clothes? Not all your dark clothes should be washed together, so sort them according to the material, how soiled the clothes are, and how delicate they are. So avoid washing your dark denim with your black lingeries or very dirty clothes with those that are slightly stained.
4. Use The Right Detergent
Another essential step to protect your clothes from fading is using a detergent made specifically for dark clothes. The best detergent for dark clothes is those that don’t contain bleach or other additives. Also, avoid using color-safe laundry detergent for your dark clothes.
In addition, when adding detergent to the washer, ensure that you use the right amount of detergent. Using too much detergent can cause fading and leave residues on your clothes.
There is usually no set amount, but you can check the label to see how much detergent you should add. You can add a little more detergent if your clothes are heavily soiled.
5. Wash in Cold Water
Hot or warm water can cause your dark-colored clothes to lose their color during a wash cycle. An excellent way to prevent this is using cold water to do your laundry. Set your machine to a cold setting for best results. Cold water is also eco-friendly and saves energy, so it’s a great idea.
5. Use The Shortest Cycle
The less time your dark clothes spend in the washer, the less prone they are to fading and damage. Use the gentle cycle on your machine to reduce the agitation of clothes in the washer. If your clothes are very dirty, you can use the soil setting or pre-soak the clothes before washing.
6. Wash Delicate Black Clothes in a Delicate Setting
Use the delicate setting to wash delicate black clothes like lingerie to protect them. You can also consider using a mesh bag if you want to wash with other clothes.
7. Hang Dry Dark Clothes
Tumble drying may be easier and faster, but it’s not the best idea for your dark clothes if you want to prevent fading. After washing, hang dry your clothes on a clothing line instead of using a dryer. Woolen clothes like sweaters should be spread on a flat surface so they don’t lose their elasticity. Also, know that too much heat from the sun is bad for your dark clothes, so avoid hanging items in direct sunlight.
8. Dry With Low Heat
If hang drying isn’t a feasible option for you, you can tumble dry using low heat. Set the dryer to the lowest heat setting and remove your clothes once you are done.
Other Tips To Care For Your Dark Clothes
Some other tips for caring for your dark clothes and protecting them from fading/damage include:
1. Turn Your Clothes Inside Out
One of the best laundry tips to care for your dark clothes is washing them inside out. It may take more time to load your clothes into the washer, but it’s worth it.
This trick helps the color of your clothes stay longer because the detergent and washing cycle primarily works on the inner layer.
2. Don’t Wash Too Often
Your dark clothes will lose some color every time you wash them. This means the more you wash your dark clothes, the more color it loses. For this reason, it’s best to wash your clothes only when they are dirty.
Also, instead of washing the whole clothes in a machine, you can consider treating stained areas by blotting with detergent, vinegar, or any other stain remover.
3. Avoid Using Bleach
Bleach is a bad idea for dark clothes, so avoid using it. You can use bleach if you have tough stains and are out of other options. In this case, ensure that you choose a quality bleach, preferably labeled “all fabric bleach.”
4. Use a Fabric Softener
Using a fabric softener on your clothes can protect them against damage. You can look for a detergent that contains fabric softener and is suitable for dark clothes. Alternatively, you can get a fabric softener and add it to your clothes while washing.
5. Pre-treat Stained Clothes
Set aside the stained clothes and treat them before washing them with other clothes. Depending on the type of stain on your cloth, you can use a stain remover, baking soda, rubbing alcohol, lemon, or hair spray.
6. Don’t Overload The Machine
It’s best to place your dark clothes loosely in the machine so that they have enough room to tumble and get cleaned.
7. Empty Pockets Before Washing
Washing your dark clothes while you have a forgotten tissue can leave white residues that will be hard to remove after drying. This can cause the clothes to look faded and dull, so remember to empty your pockets before throwing your dark clothes into the washer.
8. In Winter, Use a Warm Setting
Although cold water is best for dark clothes, cold winter temperatures can cause the washer’s temperature to fall. In this case, detergent may not work effectively. If your area is always freezing in winter, you can consider using warm water to wash your dark clothes and then rinse with cold water.
9. Perform a Sink Test
Not all blacks run colors while washing them. You can perform a sink test to know if a particular cloth will bleed colors or not. To do this, soak the cloth in lukewarm water, add a little detergent and leave for about 30 minutes. If you notice a color bleed, consider hand washing the clothes instead of using the machine.
Can You Wash Dark Clothes With Colored Clothes?
It’s tempting to wash your dark clothes with light-colored ones since they are not white, but it isn’t a good idea. Dyes from your dark clothes can wash into colored clothes and will cause them to look faded. So keep your lightly colored fabrics like lavender, pinks, turquoise, yellows, and light blues separate from dark fabrics like black, navy, gray and deep red.