The ABC’s of style care

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The ABC’s of style care

Comment faire le lavage

Ever ruin your favourite shirt in an attempt to do laundry?
Rather wear every single article in your wardrobe before doing a load?
Getting to point of sifting through the piles to decide what to wear?
Get noticed for your style instead of the funky smells and the clothes that can walk on their own.


Breathe deep, look yourself over and check out the ABC’s of style care.

First off, washing clothes is not so bad. If you have a washer and dryer, it barely takes an hour and if you have to go to a Laundromat, it’s a good place to meet attractive girls.

Give it a little thought in advance before getting to your last pair of trousers you could avoid a last minute crisis and end up placing certain garments into the dryer that should be hung or flat dried.


  • Separate the light colour clothing from the dark, unless you want all your clothes tie-dyed.
  • Wash whites separately.



Water level –pretty simple: set the water level to the quantity of clothes you are about the wash.  For small loads, such as a few t-shirts and underwear, set the machine for a small load and for larger loads, select large.  If you stuff too many clothes into the washer, it won’t clean them very well.

  • Recommendation: Consider this when purchasing clothing; for example, own more than one red item because it must be washed alone and you could purchase similar coloured undergarments in order to fill the loads.

Temperature   – remember to read the care label of your clothes before washing them. It’s the best way of keeping them in good condition for the longest time.  Generally it’s recommended to use cold water for coloured clothes, warm for the whites and cold water to rinse.  Avoid hot water as much as possible.  It can get expensive; clothes shrink, especially if they are made of cotton.

Cycle   –depending on what you’re planning on washing, you’ll have to choose between Regular wash, Gentle wash andPermanent press.  Most people will use the regular wash, but to protect delicate fabrics (sweaters, fine cottons, rayon or viscose…) you may consider the Gentle cycle as is agitates and spins items more slowly.  The Permanent press cycle is similar to the Regularcycle, but cools items down before spinning, to prevent wrinkling.  And for the heavily soiled textiles, let them soak but using the Prewash cycle.


Turn on the machine


  • Add the soap and allow the detergent to dissolve before putting the clothes in the washer.
  • Tired of soap marks on your clothes? Use liquid detergent.


  • For the load of whites, bleach is recommended to whiten your clothes even more and help remove stains more effectively.
  • Add the bleach before putting your clothes into the washer – Handle bleach carefully. Avoid splashing it directly onto clothes or yourself
  • Use the suggested quantity on the bottle (250ml or 1cup /per load) and try not to use it every time you wash your clothes. Too much bleach and the repetitive use of it could burn your clothes, weaken them and sometime make them turn yellow.


Before tossing your clothes into the washing machine…

  • Close zippers and velcro  –so they will not damage the more delicate fabrics
  • Empty the pockets
  • Flip your clothes inside out –to avoid colours fading


Some tips

  • Some clothes have colours that run easily.  It will be suggest to “wash separately” on the care label.  To avoid clothes running in the wash:
    • Flip them inside out
    • Soak them in cold water with 2 tablespoons salt and 1/4 cup of white vinegar, the first time you wash them.
  • To whiten your white socks:
    • Add a slice of lemon into the water.
  • To get rid of perspiration marks on your t-shirt or shadow on the shirt collar:
    • Make a paste using baking soda and white vinegar.
    • Spread it on the stain and rub gently with a soft toothbrush.
    • Allow the paste to work before washing.
  • To make sure stains are gone, air-dry stained clothes first
    • Dryer heat can permanently set some stains. If stains remain, treat and wash again.


Hand Wash:  3 recommendations

  • Use a gentle kind of detergent
  • Do not soak unless it’s absolutely necessary
  • Gently wring the laundry –you can roll them in a towel to remove excess water instead of wringing, which often leaves wrinkles when drip-dry clothes



Now that you know how to wash your clothes, let’s dry them.  Once again, the care label will tell you if the dryer is recommended.  Certain fibres like lycra, cannot handle the heat of the dryer and should dry flat or hang to dry and cotton for example, will shrink heavily if let in the dryer at excessive heat.  Sweaters and other clothing that will stretch out of shape when hung wet should be dried flat.

Photo by Sana Saidi on Unsplash

Using the dryer is simple as 1-2-3…

  • Remove the lint from the dryer’s lint tray.
  • Put the wet clothes in the dryer
  • Avoid overloading the dryer -clothes take longer to dry and wrinkle more
  • Choose the appropriate setting –in all cases avoid excessive heat.
  • Add some fabric softener for that soft added touch and start the dryer.
  • As soon as they’re dry, remove your clothes from the dryer to avoid them from staying creased and wrinkle or you’ll have one extra step: ironing… but this is another story…
Marie-Claude Pelletier

Mon travail de styliste consiste à trouver ce qui traduira le plus clairement qui vous êtes ou aspirez devenir, simplement. Pour que vous soyez toujours en constante évolution avec vos contraintes et toutes vos contradictions.