Lingerie 101: Wash & Care
How to wash your delicates so they look + feel fresher, longer.
1. Prepare a bath:
Fill your sink or a large bowl (we like to keep a dedicated basin for the purpose) with lukewarm water. Add two capfuls of Lingerie Wash to the water and lightly agitate with your hand to distribute the wash.
2. Add your delicates:
Drop in your lingerie or swimwear and gently move them around in the water so that the Lingerie Wash is evenly distributed and all of your lingerie is submerged in the rinse.
Grab a mag, set a timer, and let your lingerie rest in the wash for up to 30 minutes.
3. Rinse well:
Run each item under a lukewarm stream until water runs clear.
Press or gently squeeze the water out of your items (do not wring, please) and lay items flat to dry or hang evenly on a hanger or drying rack to help them maintain their natural shape.
It may feel like a hassle, but handwashed delicates last longer, look fresher, and fit better throughout their lifetime!
FALQ (Frequently Asked Lingerie Questions)
How often should I wash my bras?
There are a lot of variables at play for this question—personal preference, how many bras you have in rotation/how often your bras "get a break", whether there's a record heat wave on etc. but a good rule of thumb is to wash every 2-4 wears. Think of bras like you think of jeans—you can get away without washing them every time, but they need to be cleaned and cared for too. And, just like with jeans, you definitely know when you're due for a wash.
What about putting lingerie in a “lingerie bag” and then in the washing machine?
We know, we know. Sometimes life gets in the way and handwashing just isn't an option. Putting your delicates in a lingerie bag and popping them in the machine (with Lingerie Wash! on delicate!) is definitely better than nothing. Your bottoms will weather the wash better than your underwire bras (whose wires and straps can occasionally get bent out of shape by the machine), but if you must machine wash both, be sure to fasten the hooks of your bras so they don't snag other items and please, please, please don't put them in the dryer. The heat of the dryer often proves too much for delicate fibers—especially those blended with a little stretch.
Eek! I let my lingerie soak for longer than 30 minutes!
If your rinse runs long, don't worry. With the delicate nature of lingerie wash, most lingerie is fine to soak for longer—we've even spaced and left loads soaking overnight (whoops). We'd recommend being a bit more vigilant with your silks, though, as prolonged soaking can break down those delicate fibers faster. Try setting a timer.
There's color in the wash water. What's that about?
This is totally normal. As with most garments, the dye used in lingerie releases during the wash. Because of the low temps and short soak times, you shouldn't notice any color loss post-wash. If you're concerned about color transfer (or, if like us, you take lingerie care very. very. seriously.) you might consider washing your lingerie in "loads" as you do your regular clothes. Keeping lights + nudes separate from darks + noirs can keep your lighter lingerie looking fresher longer.
Is it okay to use Woolite or regular laundry detergent on my lingerie?
In a pinch, sure, but we wouldn't recommend making a habit of it. Woolite, as its name suggests, is actually formulated specifically for washing wool items, and regular detergent is (way) too strong for delicate fibers. The soap you choose can go a long way towards protecting the architecture and preserving the integrity of the garment. Specifically designed for lingerie's silks, laces, tulles, and meshes and precisely formulated to break down the organic residues most commonly found on lingerie, our Lingerie Wash is what Goldilocks would use on her delicates: it's juuuust right.
Why "hang evenly on a hanger or drying rack" or "lie flat to dry"?
The way that a piece dries can affect its shape. This is especially true when dealing with molded cup bras or other corsetry. If you repeatedly hang a bra by one strap, wash after wash, you run the risk of permanently altering the silhouette. We've seen many a lopsided t-shirt bra after this treatment (and that makes us sad).
My lingerie is wrinkly. Now what?
If your item needs further finishing after it dries, steam it to remove wrinkles. If you don't have a garment steamer, we often find simply hanging it in the bathroom while taking a shower does the trick. We'd advise against using a hot iron (especially on silks or synthetics).
What about washing my swimsuit?
Handwashing swimwear like lingerie every now and then is a brilliant way to make your favorite suit last longer, but we also recommend simply rinsing your swimwear with fresh water after each dip. Letting swim fabric sit with salt residue and/or chlorine is the quickest way to ruin a suit. Gently press extra water out of the suit and lay flat or hang evenly to dry.
How should I store my lingerie?
How you organize your drawer is up to you (and we've seen some exquisitely curated drawers!), but this much is universal: always store bras with the hooks hooked (loose hooks can snag delicate laces) and nest molded bras together, as if the cups were spooning (which helps protect + maintain the shape of the cups). In our experience, bras stored with the cups folded in on each other break down much faster and need to be replaced much sooner than bras stored nested together. As a magical-art-of-lingerie-storage bonus, hooked bands make it easier to take bras in and out of your drawer and nested cups actually take up less space.
Other burning questions about lingerie wear & care? Don't hesitate to ask!
There's pretty much nothing we love more than chatting lingerie. So if you're wondering how to care for heirloom laces, how to wash leather, or how to get that red wine stain out of that silk dressing gown (again), just ask.