Not all clothes can go in the washing machine, some need a little more TLC, and most airlines don't let you check-in washing machines, which is understandable.
So, what is the best way to hand wash your delicate clothes? Here are a few tips to hand wash anything from your wooly jumpers to your silky panties. But remember, all fabrics are different, so read the guidelines on the garment label.
These tips will help you hand wash your laundry like a pro.
1 THE LAUNDRY LIQUID
The laundry detergent you use is important. It doesn't have to be a 'Hand-wash Laundry Detergent' but you should avoid bio detergents and harsh chemical filled detergents. These kinds of detergents are in no way gentle on your hands, and if you're cleaning woolly or silky items, the enzymes in the bio detergent will attach the fibres. Best to use something like Wilton Laundry Liquid or a hand wash / delicate laundry liquid.
Most hand-wash only items don't like hot water (neither would your hands), so check the label and don't make the water too hot.
3 FILL UP
Fill the sink with water while pouring a small amount of Wilton Laundry Liquid under the running. For most bathroom/utility sinks, 15ml will do.
If your laundry is very dirty or stained, it's a good idea to let it soak for about half an hour. You can put a few items in at the same time, but don't overload it.
Spend around 4 minutes per item of clothes paying particular attention to stains and areas like under the arms. Gently rub stained areas of fabric together whilst dipping in and out of the water.
You might want to use conditioner. Empty the sink, rinse the sink then fill it up again with a dash of fabric conditioner then leave to soak for around 15 mins, or longer if you like.
It's really important to give your laundry a quick rinse under fresh water, again, be careful it's not too hot.
8 SQUEEZE DON'T WRING
Now you need to get rid of the excess water, but, try to avoid wringing your clothes or they will easily become misshapen - especially delicate fabrics like cashmere. When you're squeezing out the water, open the garment up and re-arrange in your hands a few times, this will get more water out.
Most of the time you will be hand-washing delicate items. for most things you can hand to dry. But with wooly items, the weight of the water can pull down and misshapen the item. Try laying flat until the item is mostly dry, then hang up. For really delicate items, squeeze gently, then lay flat on a clean towel, roll up the towel and squeeze gently, then roll out again and let dry a little before hanging up.