To avoid the dulling of your favorite white garments, follow our do-it-yourself steps to keeping whites bright. We’ve also included reasons why there is a common misconception about dry cleaning whites.
Wash whites separately. No matter what, this is the number one rule. Dyes from darker clothing can easily rub off on your whites. Wash in the hottest water the fabric will tolerate.
Pretreat stains. Gently rub the pretreating agent into the fabric with a clean, soft toothbrush. The small bristles create enough friction to remove dirt without damaging the fabric.
Use the recommended detergent amount on your detergent’s label. Detergents help lift soils and stains and not using enough (or using too much) can sabotage your efforts to keep your whites bright.
Do not use chlorine bleach. Chlorine bleach can yellow clothing and weaken the fabric. Use an alternative such as oxygen bleach or baking soda instead. Items with stains or items heavily soiled can be soaked in cold water with oxygen bleach or baking soda prior to laundering. You can also add half a cup of baking soda to the pre-wash section of your detergent compartment. These products are a greener, more environmentally friendly alternative!
Use a color remover. When your whites become dull, you can also wash them with a color remover to remove migrant dyes.
Inspect garments before drying. Check your items for stains before you put them in the dryer. The drying process could set the stain into the fabric and make removal impossible.
If you are professionally cleaning your whites and they are returned to you looking more grey than bright white, these two scenarios may be the reason:
Dirty Water. The dry cleaner is not using clean, distilled fluid with EVERY load of whites or lighter clothing. Some dry cleaners who offer low, low prices may be able to do so because they are cutting corners on operating costs by not cleaning your whites (or other colors) in clean fluid. They may re-use the fluid from wash to wash rather than take the time and resources to start fresh. You may be paying less per item on the front end but you will certainly “pay for it” in the long run when you have to replace your dingy white clothing.
Little Detergent. The dry cleaner is not using enough detergent. As mentioned in our tips for home washing, using the correct amount of detergent is crucial to keeping your whites bright during the dry cleaning process. The detergent lifts the soil and stain from the garment, suspending them in the water and washing them away. Some cleaners may cut back end expenses by lowering the amount of detergent used in their cleaning process, thus not cleaning your clothes well.
At Classic Cleaners, we begin every white load of clothing in fresh, clean, distilled fluid. Not only that, Classic Cleaners has always used the most environmentally safe products on the market.
Bring your whites to any of our locations. As always, remember to point out any marks or stains that need special attention.