How to wash darks and lights together

Shortcuts are wonderful. They save time and work and let us get ahead of the game easily. We are always looking for shortcuts. However, not all shortcuts are good, even when doing laundry.

While it may seem OK to mix the different types of fabrics and different colored clothes to wash your laundry, doing so is actually not a good idea.

Dark and light colored clothes should be washed separately in cold water. Washing clothes in cold water will mostly prevent color bleeding between clothes. So why not just combine the whites with the lights then? While it may not prevent color bleeding as well, hot or warm water washes away dirt better than cold water, so your whites stay, well, white.

So then what about drying? They’re just drying and not drowning in water, so that should be okay, right? Well, it’s not recommended to dry darks, whites and lights together either. Because the clothes are still wet, color bleeding can still occur, and there are some clothes, such as sweaters that could be damaged by coming into contact with items with zippers, during the tumble process.

Additionally, clothes should be separated by fabric types. Mixing denser fabrics with lighter or more delicate ones, like jeans in with a light T-shirt, can wear out the lighter or more delicate clothing quicker and easier from the constant friction and rubbing together with the harder and denser fabrics. This is why jeans should be washed separately.

Ultimately, the best course of action is to follow the manufacturer’s label and do what works best for you and your laundry.

Many fabric care instructions specify that lights and darks cannot be washed together. This instruction to separate laundry may seem onerous, but it is important if you want to take care of your fabrics. There are a number of reasons to separate lights and darks. The most important is ensuring that darker colors do not bleed onto lighter ones, causing the lights to stain and discolor in an unsightly way.

Bleeding is a major issue in fabric care. Lights and darks should always be separated when they are new, as fabric dyes will inevitably bleed at least a little bit the first time that they are washed. Jeans are particularly notorious for bleeding, but dark reds and other blues can also bleed. When darks such as blues are washed together, a small amount of bleeding isn’t a major issue, since it doesn’t show on the fabric. If, however, blues are washed with whites, the bleeding will stain the whites. Blues can also stain reds and other lighter colored fabrics, so some people separate their laundry into further gradations of color than just colored and white.

Fabric care instructions also vary, depending on the color. Lights, for example, can be bleached to remove stains and discoloration, while darks cannot. A light load can also be washed at a higher temperature, which may be a concern to people who are trying to sterilize laundry which has been contaminated in various ways. A dark load generally requires a cooler temperature, as this reduces the risk of bleeding, and some darks may require special detergents.

When you separate laundry into the two categories, you should also be aware that certain fabrics require special care. Some fabric, for example, should not go in the dryer, while specialty garments may require a gentle cycle or cooler water. It is a good idea to separate gentle care items to ensure that they are not accidentally damaged in a load of more sturdy laundry, and you should always check garment labels to ensure that a garment does not need to be hand washed.

If you do not have the time or inclination to separate laundry into lights and darks, you should always wash clothing on cold, to reduce the bleeding of dye. You should also use a mild, generic detergent, and a normal to gentle cycle on the washing machine. Delicate garments can be washed in pillowcases or garment bags to reduce damage, and always dry on medium to low so that garments do not shrink or fade.

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a HomeQuestionsAnswered researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a HomeQuestionsAnswered researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Of the many household tasks we do each day, doing the laundry seems like it should be a no-brainer: put clothes in the washer, add detergent, and press start. While the process may seem simple, regular washing can take a toll on your garments, so it’s important to understand the necessary steps to achieving a perfect load of laundry. If you’re wondering how to prevent white shirts from turning gray, the right way to sort your bright clothing, how to undo the damage when colors run, and which essential tricks you need to know to keep your clothes and linens in near-original condition, read on for our sage advice.

How to Keep Whites White

The main reason white items turn gray or become dull is due to incorrect sorting. People generally have few all-white loads, so they tend to mix whites with colored garments. Unfortunately, some types of fabric—notably cotton—aren’t colorfast, so their dye molecules wind up in the wash water and settle on other fabrics, most noticeably on white and other light ones. Washing heavily soiled items, such as athletic socks, with lightly soiled ones, such as sheets, can also lead to dinginess. Unless you add enough detergent to hold the dirt in suspension, it will end up back on the very articles you intended to clean. Water quality, too, can affect how your whites emerge from the washer. Iron-laden water and hard water (rich in calcium and magnesium) can render detergents less effective and cause staining.

What to Do

Wash whites separately. The best way to retain whiteness is to launder white items together in the hottest water the fabric will tolerate (water that is at least 120 degrees is most effective at removing soil). Choose detergent with a bleach alternative and/or enzymes, using the maximum amount recommended. You can increase the cleaning power of a detergent by adding a laundry booster, such as borax, oxygen bleach, or washing soda to help maintain whiteness. Before washing, soak heavily soiled items using an enzyme detergent or oxygen bleach, and launder them separately.

Treat Stains

To remove perspiration and other greasy stains, pretreat with liquid detergent, dishwashing liquid, or shampoo (use colorless ones to avoid dye transfer). Gently rub the liquid into the fabric using a clean toothbrush or complexion brush. Tackle colored stains such as food spills (think: coffee or juice) and underarm yellowing, which is residue from antiperspirant or deodorant, by applying undiluted liquid oxygen bleach directly to the fabric immediately before laundering. Once a month, or when your whites become dull, wash them with a color remover or soak items in boiling water and oxygen bleach in a basin (this is suitable only for fabrics that won’t shrink). You may have to experiment to determine which technique whitens best.

Know Your Water

If your water has a high iron content (look for reddish stains in the shower and toilet), launder with an iron-removing product (available in the laundry aisle of many supermarkets). Don’t use chlorine bleach: Combined with iron and hot water, it can yellow clothing. Instead, use oxygen bleach, which is a more effective (and more environmentally friendly) alternative. For hard water (evidenced by rough, hard-to-clean deposits on bathroom fixtures), some detergent labels call for using larger amounts. If your water is particularly hard, you may not be able to get whites pristine unless you install a water softener, which removes minerals.

Accept Less Than Perfect

Even with meticulous sorting, don’t expect whites to stay fluorescent bright forever. When white fabrics are manufactured, they are often treated with optical brighteners, which are chemicals that boost whiteness. They will eventually wash out and cannot be replaced.

How to Keep Darks Dark

Articles of clothing collide with one another in the washer’s interior during the wash cycle, which causes some of the fibers in the fabric to break, exposing the raw fiber ends. This friction disrupts the surface of the fabric, tricking the eye into seeing less color. Tumble drying can cause similar damage, though to a lesser extent. Also, washing darks in warm or hot water can hasten dye loss. With some fabrics, expect a certain amount of fading; theres no such thing, for instance, as truly colorfast cotton.

What to Do

Wash darks separately. To help preserve dark items’ original colors and prevent bleeding onto lighter clothes, wash darks together using the cold-water cycle (60 to 80 degrees). Use the shortest cycle. Select the appropriate setting depending on how soiled the clothes are and what fabric they’re made of. As far as detergents go, experts say that they don’t really contribute to fading. While some formulas are designed specifically for darks, any liquid detergent without a bleach alternative is suitable (liquids work better in cold water; powders may not dissolve fully). To minimize abrasion, prepare your clothes for the washer by closing zippers, fastening hooks, and turning items inside out. Also, wash items of similar weight together—that is, don’t wash a sweater and jeans in the same load just because they’re both dark blue.

Line-Dry Darks

Whenever possible, hang dark items to dry (out of direct sunlight), as this helps maintain their original appearance. When you do use the dryer, opt for the lowest temperature suitable for the material, and be careful not to over-dry your clothes. Remove them from the machine as soon as they’re dry or even while they’re slightly damp; this will help keep shrinkage to a minimum.

How to wash darks and lights together

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How to wash darks and lights together

Sarah Gualtieri / The Spruce

Have any of these laundry disasters happened to you?

  • Underwear that was once white is now pink
  • There are blue streaks on your favorite yellow shirt
  • White clothes are dull and dingy
  • Clothes are shrunken or stretched-out

If you seem to end up with lots of problems with your clothes after they have a trip through the laundry room, it could be your fault. Perhaps you’re not sorting your dirty laundry correctly.

Sorting laundry seems to be a mystery to lots of people so they just dump everything in together. But wait, you say you’re using one of those detergents and color catcher cloths that claims you can wash everything together? Don’t believe everything you read. That’s where lots of problems begin.

Clothes need to be sorted by color, fabric type, weight, and washing requirements (cold water or hot water). It really isn’t so hard. Follow these four simple steps and you will soon be doing laundry like a pro.

How to Sort Laundry Before Washing

You can wait until there is a mountain of laundry and the sorting will be tedious. Or, since you know that there will be dirty clothes and linens that need to be cleaned each and every day, you can make it simple by sorting laundry as you take off clothes or use each item.

Use separate laundry hampers or a laundry hamper with sorting sections in your closet, bathroom or central laundry area. If the hamper doesn’t have labels, you should add them and even post the rules for how to sort laundry so kids can help. One section should be for whites, one section for dark colors, one section for light colors, and one section for dry clean only.

Even if you have to do a bit of last-minute decision making when the load is pulled from the hamper, presorting will speed up your laundry routine and help ensure your efforts are successful. Presorting is particularly helpful if you must use a community laundry room or laundromat where space is often at a premium.

In an Emergency

Don’t make this a habit, but if you don’t have enough items to make up a full machine load of each type of fabric and you are in a hurry, you can wash all clothes of the same color together. Just be sure to choose the correct washer cycle and use cold water to avoid damaging the most delicate garments in the load.

Just remember, a lacy dark blue camisole won’t survive long when washed with a pair of brass studded jeans.

Read the Label

If you are very familiar with your regular laundry, you probably won’t have to do this step every time. But if you are teaching a child how to do laundry, it is a very important step. Read the care label on each item in the hamper.

The label will tell you whether an item can be machine washed, what water temperature to use, and how to dry the fabric. Place all clothes that are labeled, “wash separately” or “handwash” into a separate pile.

If you are a novice on how to do laundry and see a tag that says “dry clean only”, believe the label and place it in a bag to take to a professional dry cleaner. With some experience, you will learn that some items labeled as dry clean only can be hand washed. You’ll also learn how to use a DIY home dry cleaning kit in your dryer.

How to wash darks and lights together

Sort by Color

Once the handwash and dry clean only clothes are separated, sort the remaining washable laundry by color. Whites, pastels, light gray, and white background prints will go in one pile. Dark colored clothes–black, red, navy, brown, dark gray–go in another pile.

How to wash darks and lights together

Sort by Fabric

Sort each pile one more time by type of fabric. For instance, in the white/light colored pile separate towels and sheets from blouses, slacks, and underwear or lingerie.

In the dark colors, separate t-shirts and jeans from lighter weight items like blouses and dress shirts. If you have dark towels or blankets, separate them from clothes to reduce lint, never wash lint-producing fabrics and lint-attracting fabrics together!

Washing by each color and fabric type allows you to use the correct water temperatures and keeps drying cycles simple.

How to wash darks and lights together

Wash Heavily Soiled Items Separately

Not everyone will need to do this step but if you have heavily soiled items with ground-in dirt or oily stains like motor oil or lots of cooking oil stains, sort as usual but wash these items separately. This will prevent heavy soil from redepositing on other clothing. It will also prevent the transfer of strong odors to other fabrics.

QUESTION: I have a mountain of clothing I need to wash in my washing machine. About 25% are whites and 75% are colored clothes. I need to save time and wash all the clothes together. Most of the clothes are for my children. I have a full time job and new baby. I have no time to sort the clothes. If I wash all the clothes together in just COLD water, will the other colors bleed into the white clothes? I have a top load Kenmore washer that works great but the tub is not that big. I am simply trying to save time. Any tips or tricks are appreciated.

How to wash darks and lights togetherCan I Wash My Whites And Colored Clothes Together

ANSWER: It is not a good idea to wash whites with colored clothes if you want your white clothes to stay white. Cold water washing will not make clothes bleed color like hot water will. Color transfer can still happen when using only cold water so it is best to keep colors and whites separated.

If you have NO CHOICE but to wash ALL YOUR CLOTHES TOGETHER (Colored clothing and Whites):
You can attempt to wash your whites and colored clothes in your washer in COLD water AT THE SAME TIME, IF the colored clothes are old and the dye that colors them is faded. Colored clothing should be washed many times before washing with white clothes. Set your washer to the shortest wash cycle and the coldest water setting possible. Do not use excess detergent. Be sure no colored clothing is brand new when washing with white clothes. The excess color must be washed out of new clothes. This usually takes from 3 to 4 washes. Use a product called SHOUT COLOR CATCHER.

How To Wash Whites and Darks together

Important notes concerning washing clothes that are colored and whites together

  • Never wash brand new bold colored clothes with lightly colored clothes. The deep bold colors on on clothing is more likely to bleed onto lighter ones, more so when they are brand new. Washing in cold water can help but it isn’t a perfect solution.
  • As an example: If you wash BRAND NEW black underwear with white tshirts, you will come away with gray T-shirts. If you wash a BRAND NEW red bra with white t-shirts, the t-shirts will turn pink.
  • Most clothes when they are brand new will “bleed” color NO MATTER WHAT TEMPERATURE you use. Make sure to wash those items separately or with other clothes of a similar color.
  • The outcome of the wash can depend on whether you have soft or hard water. If you have hard water, colors should be separated. Soft water does a better job to not let colors bleed as much but be cautious with the white clothes.
  • You can try to wash clothes (unsorted) in cold. Sheets and towels in warm or hot water. Cloth diapers in hot water. Try using Bio-Kleen or Allens Naturally detergent and no fabric softener.
  • If you have a new piece of dark clothing that looks like it may bleed color, do 3 or 4 individual separate dark color loads to make sure that all the dye bleeds away from that particular clothing item. It may only take no more than 1 or 2 washes to “treat” the problem. Then, you can go back to the no sort rule and usually won’t have any color bleeding problems.
  • There is product called “Shout Color Catcher”. This product grabs some of the color that is in the water. Use a sheet in your laundry and you won’t have much dinginess if you mix colored clothes with white clothes.

Shout Color Catcher Absorbs And Traps Loose Dyes To Keep Colors Vibrant. Shout Color Catcher is specially designed to work like a sponge. It absorbs and traps loose dyes in the wash, safely locking them away so they can’t redeposit on other clothes. Shout Color Catcher keeps clothes looking vibrant and new, wash after wash. You can mix colors in the same load. Saves you time and money.

Shout Color Catcher – Wash Whites And Darks Together

Shout Color Catcher:
Allows you to mix light, medium, and bright colours (greens, khakis, blues, and blacks).
Keeps colors vibrant and brightens your whites.
Works well on all fabrics, at all temperatures and with all laundry products.

Just for reference when washing, here is a washing machine load size recommendations chart

Do you have ideas or suggestions about a way to wash all clothes together that will reduce color bleeding? Please leave a comment below.

Overwhelmed by the idea of doing your own laundry? Don’t fret. The process doesn’t have to be difficult, but there are a few things you should know to really get your clothes and other fabrics clean. You might be afraid that you’ll shrink your most favorite sweater or turn that bright white T-shirt pink, but we’ve got you covered with an expert guide for doing your laundry the right way so that won’t happen.

Once you realize how easy it is, it will become like second nature. Allison Freer is a wardrobe expert and author of How to Get Dressed, and actually washes people’s clothes for a living. She’s an expert at doing laundry like a pro and shared with us some of her top tips for getting clothes squeaky clean in the easiest, most efficient way possible.

How to do laundry the right way:

1Start by sorting your clothes.

Let’s start at the very beginning: sorting. Yes, it’s totally boring, but it is also the absolute cornerstone of good laundry practices. If you are currently just cramming everything into one load, guess what? You’re doing it wrong.

Ideally, there are to be five distinct categories you should be separating your laundry into: whites/lights, brights, darks, household linens, and gentle/cold water washables. Here’s Freer’s breakdown of what goes where:

  • Whites/Lights: A load of lights means only very pale colored or white T-shirts, cotton undies, pajamas, shorts, and the like. Basically anything that is light enough to not bleed onto other garments. Use warm water to wash lights.
  • Brights: In laundry, as in life, red means danger. Red clothing is laundry enemy #1, as it is notorious for turning an entire load of whites a pale pink. You can wash reds, bright oranges, hot pinks and deep purples together once you are sure they are colorfast.Test colorfastness by spraying the garment with water and blotting with a paper towel to see if any dye transfers, then, wash brights in cool water to cut down on color fade.
  • Darks: This should include stuff like blue jeans, sweatshirts, and gym clothes. Basically any garment that can stand up to the dye in a pair of blue jeans. Use warm water to wash your darks.
  • Household Linens: If you’ve ever accidentally washed a bath towel with some of your clothes, you already know that they produce a special kind of lint that attaches itself to your wardrobe forever, like lice on a first grader. Be sure to wash towels, sheets, and kitchen rags by themselves in the hottest water you can. The high temperature kills bacteria and deodorizes naturally.
  • Gentle/Cold: Try to keep anything delicate, silky, linen, vintage, or slinky out of the regular wash. This includes my underwear, bras, vintage slips, and stuff that just seems it would be beefed by hot water and a super aggressive spin cycle. Even cheap polyester dresses from Forever 21 can benefit from the extra care the gentle cycle and cold water gives! Cold water puts less stress on the fibers and when they take less of a beating, they don’t pill or fray quite as easily.

A mesh laundry bag is a great tool to use when washing things like socks and underwear. It keeps them together and in shape so they don’t get hammered by the spin cycle. Just make sure you never put anything you deem mesh bag or gentle cycle-worthy in the dryer. It’s all drip dry, baby.

Pro tip: As you sort everything, make sure to check all pockets for money, tissues, lipsticks and other random objects that could foul up your clothes. Also, be sure to button all buttons and snap all snaps. This helps lessen fastener breakage and stops garments from getting twisted in the wash.

2Pre-treat any stains.

Check for stains and pre-treat them accordingly, because once you wash and heat dry a stain, it’s yours for life. Freer is a huge fan of Dryel’s stain pen. According to her, “It’s straight dry cleaning fluid on a stick.”

If you have no stain solution on hand, you can try a homemade paste of Dawn dishwashing liquid, hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. Freer says you can use use it by giving the affected area a scrub using an old toothbrush.

3Determine the correct amount of detergent.

Dosing out the correct amount of detergent is an important factor for making sure your laundry turns out clean. How much detergent you’ll need is determined by the size of your load, how dirty the clothes are, and the type of detergent you’re using. Plus, if you’re using a high efficiency washer (HE), that might change.

Most liquid detergents come with a measuring cap to make this easier, but as a general rule of thumb, you should use about a tablespoon of laundry detergent per regular load size.

4Load the machine.

Determine what the proper load size is for your washer. “Overloading it leads to not enough water and soap working its way into your garments, preventing them from getting really clean. Everything should be packed in loosely, not tightly—much like a bowl of chunky chicken soup,” says Freer.

A regular capacity washer holds one bed sheet, four pillowcases, two or three shirts, and about six pairs of underwear. (Not that you should be washing all those things together! It’s just to give you a visual.)

She also points out that you may not realize it, but your washer needs a little TLC sometimes. Make sure to run it empty with a cup or two of white vinegar every so often to keep it clean and wipe down the inside of the machine, lid, and seals regularly with a wet cloth.

Pro tip: Don’t forget to check the lint trap every time you dry a load! Clogged lint screens impact the efficiency of your dryer and can even start fires.

5Select the correct temperature and cycle.

This is where sorting your items comes in handy. Based on the color and material of your load, you’ll want to select the appropriate washing cycle. The washing cycle determines the speed of agitation and temperature of the water.

  • Normal/Regular Cycle: This is best for lights, sheets, towels, underwear, and other clothing. It uses faster agitation to clean more durable fabrics.
  • Delicate Cycle: This is best for items that need special care like wool or silk. It uses slow agitation and a slow rinse cycle.
  • Permanent Press Cycle: This is best for more heavy duty fabrics like jeans, non-cotton items, and synthetic fibers. This uses both fast and slow agitation speeds.

Freer says she tends to take everything out of the dryer while it’s barely dry—not hot. Any longer and she advises to beware that your things could start shrinking rapidly. After that you’ll want to properly fold and put away your clothes so they stay in tip top shape.

And there you have it! If you are anything like us, you now have a giant mountain of clean laundry that you can dig through and finally clean the right way.

Colorful garments are fun, but they also need special care, since they can fade and lose color quicker than light or dark clothes. Proper washing and care of those clothes will help colorful clothes last longer. Check out our step-by-step guide and helpful video instructions below, as well as some extra tips on how to wash colored clothes with Tide’s color safe detergents for the best results and say goodbye to fading clothes. Here is a quick guide for washing colors:

How to wash darks and lights together

Sort according to color shades. New items may bleed, so wash separately

Sort according to color shades. New items may bleed, so wash separately

How to wash darks and lights together

Check for tough stains. Check care label, avoid bleach

Check for tough stains. Check care label, avoid bleach

How to wash darks and lights together

Use Tide detergent. Wash on cold setting.

Use Tide detergent. Wash on cold setting.

Ready to learn even more about how to wash and protect your colored clothes? Read on for more in-depth tips and tricks for laundry success:

Read the labels on colored clothing. They will say whether the item should be washed in a washing machine, by hand or whether it should go to a dry cleaner.

Sort clothes according to color. Wash dark colors together, and white or lighter colors in a separate load. In the case of a larger load made up of color groups, then these can be tackled in separate laundry loads, where bright clothes, such as purples, reds, oranges and bright yellows can be washed together and bright blues and greens can also be washed together in a different batch.

Examine colored clothing for stains and if there are any stains, pre-treat them with a small amount of laundry detergent like Tide Ultra Stain Release Liquid. Pour Tide on the stain, and rub the fabric together to work the detergent into the fibers.

Turn new colored clothes inside out, and put them in the washing machine. Do not over stuff the machine, and wash the items on as gentle a cycle as is necessary to clean clothes. A gentle or medium wash cycle should be sufficient, especially if Tide detergent is used.

Wash new colored clothes in cold water. For best performance, use Tide Plus Coldwater Clean Liquid – it’s made to keep bright colored clothes radiant, even in a cold water wash.

Use fabric protection. Use Downy Fabric Conditioner to protect against stretching, fading and fuzz.

Remove clothes from the machine as soon as cycle finishes. Allowing colored clothes to sit in a washing machine may cause the colors to leech onto other items.

Hang your colored clothes to dry. Avoid using the dryer if possible, since the dryer can cause clothing to fade faster and set any missed stains.

Dark clothes are a fun part of our wardrobes.

But to keep the dark colors we love so much intact, they need a bit of special care and the separate treatment on laundry day.

That’s because dark clothes are prone to fading during the wash cycle, which is bad for them, and worse for other non-dark garments in the load.

If you wash dark clothes properly, however, they’ll stay colorful and last longer. Here’s how to take the best care of your dark loads on laundry day.

Wash Dark Clothes Separately from Their Lighter Cousins

Come wash day, take the time to sort your clothes according to color, separating lights (and whites) from darks. Always wash dark clothes separately from their lighter cousins.

Washing lights and darks together is a recipe for color transfer between the clothes. And both are likely to emerge looking worse for wear. This guide to choosing the right laundry temperature can help.

How to Wash Dark Clothes the First Time

Wash new dark clothes separately or the first time in cold water (60 to 80 degrees F) in the gentle wash cycle to set the color. Cold water will protect most dark or bright-colored clothing from running and minimizes shrinkage.

Warm water washes have the opposite effect: Warm water loosens up the fabric fibers, allowing dyes to be released from the fabric more quickly.

Always select “cold” for the rinse cycle. A cold water rinse can reduce the energy per load by up to one-third and minimizes wrinkling in synthetic and permanent-press fabrics.

To lessen the toll that agitation takes on clothing, wash dark clothes inside out in the shortest machine cycle. The less time dark clothes are in the water agitating, the better.

The Dirt on Laundry Detergents

How much laundry detergent should you use? The answer varies by the load.

When reading the product directions, keep in mind that package recommendations should be considered only a starting point for determining proper amounts.

The amount of detergent you use will depend on water hardness (the harder the water, the more detergent needed), the amount of soil (more soil requires more detergent), and the water temperature (colder water requires more detergent).

The hotter the water, the more effective the detergent will be. When using cold water for washing, increase the amount of detergent to one-and-a-half to two times the recommended amount.

Detergent works by loosening dirt and gunk from fabrics. Then it holds the removed dirt in the wash water until it can be rinsed away.

If you use too little detergent, clothes can become dull and dingy, body soils are left on cuffs and collars, and lint isn’t held in the water until it is rinsed away; instead, it’s redeposited on clothes.

You might also notice greasy-looking stains because, if you regularly use too little detergent, it allows gunk to build up on the outer tub of the washer. These soils then wash off and redeposit on other loads. Ick. Err the other way.

To minimize fading when washing dark clothes, avoid laundry detergents with added boosters such as bleach, which can strip the color from dark clothes.

Avoid Frequent Tumble Drying

Avoid frequent tumble-drying and dry-cleaning. Heat may damage fibers, and dry-cleaning may cause discoloration. The tumbling action of the dryer roughs up the surface of the fibers, creating a halo of fuzz that catches the light and makes dark clothes appear faded.

When necessary, tumble dry while the dryer drum is cool and use delicate settings. If possible, hang dark clothes to dry or lay flat to dry on a clean towel in a cool, dark place.

Learn important tips for washing different colour clothes

Hooray for laundry day! Everyone loves clean clothes, which is why it’s important to know how to care for your family’s favourite outfits. One of the best ways to keep everyone looking sharp is by learning how to wash white, black, dark and coloured clothes properly. By using the tips below, you can help keep your shirts, pants, skirts, sweaters and blouses looking their best.

How to wash darks and lights together

1) How to clean white clothes

When it comes to washing white clothes, it’s important to remember that dirt and dye equals dingy. Be sure to wash white clothes separately from anything with colour, such as dark items or brights. Even lightly dyed items and older clothes can leech dye during a wash cycle, which can stain your whites or give them a dull, grey appearance.

Also before washing whites, be sure to separate heavily soiled items from lightly soiled ones. This will help prevent dirt or stain particles from settling on other items during the wash cycle.

Once your whites are loaded into the washing machine, select a detergent with an added booster, or add oxygen bleach, borax or washing soda to the detergent dispenser. Lastly, wash your whites in the hottest water your fabric will tolerate to help power out stains and reduce dinginess.

2) How to wash dark or black clothes

As mentioned above, be sure to separate any dark clothes from lights, brights and whites before washing. While it is possible to wash black clothes with other dark fabrics, you may wish to wash black items separately from other dark clothes to avoid dulling or staining. However, if you don’t have enough black/dark clothes for a full load, you can combine them.

Next, sort your items by fabric weight, turn the clothes inside out and fasten zippers, buttons or hooks to reduce friction. Clothing fibers can break when rubbed against rough surfaces, which will make dark or black clothes look faded.

To help keep dyes from bleeding, select detergent without boosters or bleach alternatives, use the shortest wash cycle possible and opt for cold water. Heat can stress and fade dark fabric, so use the lowest dryer cycle heat setting and remove your clothes as soon as they are finished.

3) How to wash coloured clothes

In some ways, washing coloured clothes is similar to washing dark clothes. However, it is important to separate colours more thoroughly than darks to avoid staining from dyes.

Try to group colours together – wash pastels in one group, and separate reds, oranges and yellows from green or blue items. If your brights are brand new, wash them separately for the first few washes to help keep them from bleeding dye onto other clothes. As with dark clothes, secure zippers, buttons and hooks and turn all items inside out.

Choose the shortest wash cycle possible based on the level of soiling, and use cold water. If one of your brights bleeds onto another, do not place the soiled item in the dryer – heat will set the stain. Instead, wash this item separately in cold water until the dye washes out.

How to wash darks and lights together

4) Other laundry tips

Before you toss your clothes in the washing machine, take some time to double check labels and set aside clothes that need hand washing or are dry clean only. Pre-treat stained clothes and set them aside to wash separately if they are heavily soiled. To avoid damaging clothing fibres, try to group and wash fabrics of similar weight together.

Lastly, wash towels and sheets separately from clothes, using a long, hot wash cycle to ensure a thorough cleaning.

How to wash darks and lights togetherDon’t get us wrong — pink is so in right now, but letting a red sweater turn all of your white socks and tees pink is not the fashion statement you want to make. Even though it’s tempting to shove all of your laundry into the washer and hit start, there are easier and better ways to clean your laundry without tie-dying everything in the washing machine. Use these laundry sorting tips to get fresh, clean, and fabulous clothes out of every load!

Pull out any items labeled “hand wash” or “dry clean only.”

We’re all too familiar with the temptation to throw “hand wash only” delicates in cold water on the “delicate” setting and call it a day, but it’s not worth it! When you’re figuring out how to separate laundry, one of the most important things to understand is that not everything can be washed at home. Putting these special or delicate items in the washing machine is a surefire way to damage or ruin them. Set these aside, and either hand wash them or make a trip to your local dry cleaner.

Separate your clothes into whites, lights, and darks.

When you’re sorting your machine-washable clothes on laundry day, it’s essential to know how to separate laundry colors. A general rule of thumb is to make three piles of clothes: one for whites, one for light-colored garments, and one for dark-colored clothing. By washing these colors separately, you can avoid dark clothes bleeding onto light clothes and keep white garments from becoming dull and dingy.

While you should always consult the care labels on your clothing, each color category generally follows similar rules:

  • Hot water for white clothes
  • Cold water for darks and brights that can bleed
  • Warm water for everything else

Keep in mind that when it comes to removing stains, hot water is your best bet. So, if you’ve got a dark pair of pants or a bright top that has a stain, you’ll want to either pre-treat the stain, put it on a longer cycle, or both to ensure that you get that stain out!

Separate clothes again based on fabric type and weight.

When you’re separating clothes for laundry, another crucial step is separating them again based on their fabric. You don’t want to wash your heavy denim jacket with thin cotton fabrics. When you combine all types and weights of materials, the “sturdier,” rougher fabrics often cause a whole lot of wear and tear on your lighter, more delicate pieces.

Wash your jeans and denim separately for the first few washes.

If you’ve ever rocked a brand new pair of jeans only to discover your palms have turned a matching shade of blue, you know how much color new denim can lose! Avoid staining your other clothing by washing new jeans totally alone, at least for the first few washes. Make sure your favorite pair stays that perfect shade of blue by turning them inside out and washing them in cold water.

Clean delicates solo on the gentle cycle.

For your most “fragile” (yet still machine-washable) items of clothing, such as dress shirts and lacy pajama sets, your washer’s delicate setting is your best friend. Choose a mild detergent, and wash everything in cold water. If possible, choose the shortest spin cycle. Putting smaller items into a mesh washer bag is also a good idea, as this will reduce the risk of snags or other issues. Once washed, skip the dryer altogether and either hang or lay flat to dry.

Launder towels and sheets without any clothing, in HOT water.

There are three big reasons why you should always wash your towels and bedding without any of your clothing.

  • First, your towels and sheets get the dirtiest! Unlike your clothing, they’re used repeatedly before being washed, gathering dirt and sweat and skin cells. (Gross, but true!)
  • Second, your towels and bedding need a more vigorous wash to get clean than your clothing needs.
  • Third, when your clothes get wrapped up in your sheets, they don’t get a proper clean.

To make sure your bed linens are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized, wash them in hot water using the heavy-duty or extra cleaning setting on your washing machine unless the care label says otherwise.

Set yourself up for success with must-have laundry essentials.

While it’s always a smart idea to remember these laundry sorting tips and guidelines, it’s hard to treat your clothes right with the wrong appliances.

Rather than tough it out with old or faulty laundry machines, find your perfect smart washer and dryer set with a flexible payment plan and a no-credit-check lease at Rent-A-Center. Not sure where to start? Consider Maytag, one of the most popular and well-known laundry machine and appliance brands in the business!

With its squeaky clean all-white look, t his 3.8 Cu. Ft. Washer and 7.0 Cu. Ft. Electric Dryer Set from Maytag offers simplistic and incredible features. The washing machine comes with 12 different wash cycles, so you simply select your laundry type and run with it. With customizable cycles perfect for every scenario, color, and fabric type, this Maytag washer and dryer set takes the guesswork out of housework.

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Now that you’re a master at separating clothes for laundry – get the Maytag washer and dryer you need to make your brights shine! With Rent-A-Center’s affordable payment options and no-credit leases, it’s easy to get the washer and dryer you need, on your terms. Start your order online today and get a fresh washer and dryer set with doorstep delivery or same-day curbside pickup!

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When I first met my roommate, one of the first things she told me was that she loves doing laundry. “It just calms me down,” she said, as we stood over our newly-purchased washer, unsuccessfully attempting to connect the hose to the wall plug-in. “I love the routine of it.” Eventually, after forty-five minutes of wrestling with the washer hose, we called a plumber.

Unlike my roommate, I’ve always dreaded laundry day. I used to spend most of the week watching the pile in my hamper gradually begin to overflow, putting off washing my pillowcases or towels until they were stained with mascara. But since then, my laundry-loving roommate has taught me a thing or two about the do’s and don’ts of washing clothes, and laundry day has begun to look a bit less daunting.

For most of my life, I’ve defaulted to washing with warm water simply because it seemed like a good compromise between hot and cold. The most surprising laundry tip I’ve learned is that each temperature setting has its own strengths and weaknesses, from stain removal to fade prevention. Hot water is best for washing white items, and warm water is good for washing knits. But these shouldn’t be your only default settings. While hot water may seem like it will give the deepest clean, it can actually fade, shrink, or damage your clothes.

Here’s a rundown of when cold water actually does the trick.

1. Washing dark colors

Cold water is best for preventing fading, so stick to a cold setting on your darks load. (This is why it’s important to separate your clothes into light and dark laundry loads. While white items do best in hot water, cold water prevents fading in your dark items.)

2. Washing bright colors

Washing with cold water helps preserve colors and prevent them from bleeding or fading. So if you want to avoid your white socks turning pink, wash your brights separately on a cold water setting.

WATCH: 7 Things You Should Never Put in the Washing Machine

3. Washing delicates

When it comes to more fragile materials like lace, silk, or wool, cold water is best, as it’s gentler on these items. Hand washing these delicate materials is equally as effective.

4. Washing jeans

It’s best to wash your jeans on the cold setting, which will prevent shrinkage or misshaping. Good Housekeeping recommends washing jeans inside-out to minimize the chance of damage. While it’s perfectly safe to put your jeans through the wash, be wary of dryers. Leaving your jeans to air-dry after a cold wash is the best way to avoid shrinking.

5. Removing stains

Hot water may be best for disinfecting and removing bacteria, but cold water is actually more effective in removing certain kinds of stains. A cold water soak and cold wash cycle will help fight tough food, coffee, or sweat stains more effectively than hot water. (Beware: sometimes, hot water can even worsen those pesky stains).

6. Reducing wrinkles

If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to iron, cold water is your best bet to reduce wrinkling.

7. Saving energy

When switched on hot, your washing machine expends a significant amount of energy– according to GE Appliances, 75 to 90 percent of your washer’s energy can go to heating the water alone. So washing on cold can help lower your electric bill.

8. Washing eco-friendly

We know that washing your laundry in cold water saves energy– this also means it’s much more environmentally sustainable. Washing your clothes in cold water is an easy way to live a more sustainable lifestyle!

These tips and tricks provide a general outline of when it’s best to use cold water, but each item of clothing or fabric is different. Always consult the clothing tag before washing to find instructions specific to that item.

Following these general rules has helped me reduce the stress of laundry day and made this simple task a bit more manageable. Maybe next, I’ll tackle cleaning the bathroom.

Out, Damned Spot has long provided general tips to keep your fashions looking amazing, but now, twice a month, I’ll also be answering questions about the very specific problems your new (or old!) purchases may present. Do you have questions for me? Ask away!

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How to wash darks and lights together

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I know the world isn’t black and white, but most of my tops are. I understand washing lights (kind of) and I understand washing darks (kind of, but just go with me here) but I don’t understand how to wash striped shirts. They’re dark! They’re light! They definitely have spills on them that could use bleach! They definitely shouldn’t be bleached! Help! — Meredith Haggerty

I, too, am a devotee of striped shirts and I, too, have long fretted over how best to categorize them for laundering purposes. Are they lights? Are they darks? Are they just the single thing in this world that I can’t figure out how to properly wash? Striped shirts are the chicken-and-the-egg of the washing world, I think.

Fortunately for those of us who love striped shirts (Meredith and I are solemnly fist-bumping rn), changes in laundry protocol from the days of yore have made it easier to figure out how to handle the laundering of these vexing, but oh so covetable, garments.

The Question of Separating By Color

I know that you’re sitting on the edge of your seat, so excited are you to hear my discourse on changes in laundry protocol! Here’s the deal: Until fairly recently, the accepted Way That One Laundered was to separate whites from darks, or lights from colors, depending on your preferred vernacular, and wash each type using a different water temperature (hot for whites, cold for darks). But times, my friend, they are a’changin’ and these days, water temperature is no longer such a crucial aspect of wash day — most modern detergents are formulated to work equally well in both hot and cold water, and advances in stain removal also mean that water temperature is less important when it comes to getting out the salad oil that you dribbled down your shirt. That also means that we’re no longer bound by the old ways, in which one separated lights from darks as if life itself depended on it.

How to wash darks and lights together

These are definitely going to have to be washed. Photo: David De Lossy/Getty

So to sum this up: Say yes to washing striped shirts with either colors or whites, but say no to washing them with darks like indigo jeans or black sweatshirts and be extra careful with reds.

The Secret Weapon

There’s still, of course, the issue of colors that may run, and of whites that may become dingy over time because of dye transfer from darker clothing. Which means that we can’t just say, “Wash a striped shirt with any old thing, it’ll be fine!” That’s frustrating, as nuances often are, but there is a secret weapon: Shout Color Catchers and Carbona Color Grabbers. They do exactly what they sound like they do, trap loose dyes in the wash to prevent them from transferring onto other items. Using a color catcher in the wash will allow you to launder your striped shirts with either lights or with darks without fretting.

No Matter What Else Is in the Load, Here Are Your Washer Settings

Cold water. Always cold water. (The cold water will help to keep the colored stripes from fading.) If your machine provides you with the option, use the extra rinse cycle, which will help to keep the white stripes bright by wicking away any excess detergent or dingy water deposits. And, of course, use your color catcher to prevent dye transfer.

A Final Word On Stain Treatment

In her question, Meredith lamented that, when faced with stains on her beloved striped shirts, bleach is not an option. Worry not, because there are plenty of other great choices for treating stains or generalized dinginess on multicolored items. For stains, a laundry pre-treatment spray like Zout or a color-safe bleach will do the trick, while an oxygenated bleach can be used to brighten up a striped shirt that’s gone a bit gray. And if the worst has happened and your red or navy or black stripes have bleed into the white, Carbona makes a product called Color Run Remover that can reverse that.

And now you may go forth and wash your striped shirts without fear or confusion, and get back to the important work of looking absolutely adorable in that French vacationer sort of way!

Ah, a mystery that has plagued the washing world for many years. Is grey light or dark?

Well, it is a great question. You see, this question means that you’re already sorting your washing into lights and darks. That’s a very important thing unless you want all of your clothes to be stained by each other!

But what about greys? Where should they be?

To answer this washing mystery, we must dive deep into the washing machine and find out the best settings to use with grey items.

We must then find out which settings are best for light and dark washes and then piece this washing puzzle together. So, let’s do that, shall we?

Is grey considered light or dark for laundry?

Grey is considered a dark colour when doing laundry.

As you know, your washing should be split into colour groups. Your white should have a pile, your lighter colours should and so too should your darks. Your grey clothes should go in the dark pile.

The reason for this is simple. Your light pile of clothing is for pastel colours like pinks, light blues and lavenders, for example. The dark pile is for blacks, navies, reds and greys.

If you are really concerned that your darks may cross-contaminate each other, you can keep splitting it down as well. For example, you can split all of your brighter darks into one pile and leave the blacks, navies and greys in a separate pile. This will ensure that if any dyes are released during the washing cycle, the clothes of a similar colour won’t be affected.

If you have a pair of grey chinos, though, you may want to consider a whole new pile of washing. The weight of the fabric your garment is made from should also be a factor when you sort your piles.

When to separate greys further

If you are washing a few grey t-shirts and a couple of pairs of chinos, these should be done separately. This is because clothing made from heavier materials can damage lighter ones in the wash and if you plan on ever wearing your shirts again, I’m sure you’ll agree this is bad.

You should also follow the same rules for any grey delicates. If you have a grey wool jumper, for example, you should sort this into a dark pile of delicates. As long as each pile of darks and lights is sorted into delicates, denim and then your normal lights and darks, you won’t have any issues.

Washing greys separately when they are new

One final thing, what about washing greys when they are brand new? Most clothing companies state that garments should be washed separately for the few washes. We recommend you follow that advice. Once those first few washes are done, you can then start splitting your greys into the groups above.

We hope this washing article has helped you with your grey issues. If you need any more washing advice, please explore our website further. We have loads of articles on here about washing, as well as reviews of the best washing machines in the UK right now too. Happy washing!

How to wash darks and lights together

In The Wash is your guide to the best laundry and cleaning products, tips and tricks. Our mission is to solve the UK’s cleaning and laundry dilemmas!

Last Updated: 21st July, 2021

In this way, can you wash light jeans with dark clothes?

You can wash most jeans with other dark colored clothes though some manufacturers recommend washing jeans separately. Follow the care instructions on your jeans. Never wash jeans with whites or other light colors. Washing them on a gentle setting reduces the wear on your jeans and helps them keep their great look.

Furthermore, do light wash jeans bleed? Categorize your jeans: colored, dark, and light jeans are a few common types. Before you regularly wash your jeans, you should put them in the wash alone. Dark colored jeans in particular tend to bleed and can ruin any other clothing you have in the load. Load the jeans with similar colored clothing and jeans.

One may also ask, how do you wash denim jeans with light?

Wash your jeans in the sink or a tub.

  1. Fill a tub with a few inches of cold or lukewarm water. Mix in a gentle, color preserving detergent.
  2. Turn the jeans inside out, then lay flat in the tub. Don’t bunch them or wrinkle them. Let them soak for about 45 minutes.
  3. Run them under the water to rinse. Hang up to dry.

How do you wash dark jeans for the first time?

When you first get your jeans, get proactive and seal the wash in before your first wear. Turn your jeans inside-out, then soak them in cold water with one cup of white vinegar and one tablespoon of salt. This tip works on your favorite colored denim too!

Tweak your towel cleaning techniques to keep them fresh, fluffy, and color true.

By Manasa Reddigari | Updated Oct 30, 2020 9:35 AM

How to wash darks and lights together How to wash darks and lights together How to wash darks and lights together How to wash darks and lights together

How to wash darks and lights together

Tossing soiled towels in with the rest of the wash won’t get them as clean and fresh as possible because stains, germs, and dye from other items could transfer onto them. What’s more, large towels in with the regular load could damage fibers of delicate garments and wrap around and trap small items, preventing them from being evenly washed. Read on to learn how to wash towels correctly to boost hygiene and comfort, plus tips for towel maintenance that will help extend their fluff, absorbency, and lifespan.

1. Separate towels into their own loads of lights and darks.

First, pull out the towels from other clothing and linens. Then separate white and light colored towels from dark colored ones into separate piles. Any towel darker than pale yellow should be in the dark pile. Towels being highly absorbent, white and light ones could pick up the dye from darker ones and become discolored over time. Dark towels, having transferred their dye to the white and light towels, may fade.

2. Load the towels without overstuffing.

Start with either the white/light or dark colored pile, loading towels into the drum of your washing machine without overstuffing, as towels may otherwise get unevenly washed. A front-load washer can handle a 12-pound load on average, or about seven bath towels; a top-load washer can usually handle a 15- to 18-pound load, or nine to 11 bath towels.

How to wash darks and lights together

3. Use half the detergent you’d use for a normal load.

Avoid using too much detergent, which will stiffen towels. Open the detergent drawer located at either the front of the machine for front-load machines or below the lid of top-loaders, filling the reservoir with half the amount of detergent you would use for a normal load. Use any quality detergent, either natural (e.g., Mrs. Meyer’s Laundry Detergent, on Amazon) or synthetic (e.g., Tide Clean Laundry Detergent, on Amazon).

4. Add chlorine or non-chlorine bleach as necessary.

To banish stains, add bleach to the bleach reservoir of the machine in the amount specified on the packaging, as follows:

  • If washing only white towels, add chlorine or non-chlorine (aka, color-safe) bleach to the bleach reservoir.
  • If washing either a combination of white/light towels or dark towels, use only color-safe bleach. Chlorine bleach can lift the dye from colored towels along with the stains, fading the towels over time.

How to wash darks and lights together

5. Select Regular or Normal cycle on your washing machine.

The fast spin and longer duration of these cycles eliminate dust, dirt, and bacteria from towel fibers.

6. Set the water temperature to hot (for whites) or warm (for like colors).

Set the water temperature according to the color category of towels as follows:

  • For white/light colors, set the water temperature to hot. This temperature helps brighten white or light towels.
  • For dark colors, set the water temperature to warm. This temperature helps eliminate bacteria yet preserve color.

7. Shake out the excess water from each towel before transferring to the dryer.

Press the Start button to begin the wash cycle. When the cycle completes, retrieve towels one by one, shaking each one out by hand to get rid of excess water before transferring it to the dryer. This will shorten the drying time.

8. Toss in the dryer until just dry, or air-dry flat.

Select the Regular or Automatic cycle on your dryer. This setting uses high heat to maximize fluffiness. When just dry (over-drying can deteriorate fibers), retrieve towels one by one, folding each one immediately to minimize wrinkles.

If you don’t have a dryer, or prefer to air-dry towels, spread them out indoors on a drying rack positioned near an open window that receives ample sunlight or near a heater if a window isn’t available. Alternatively, hang them outdoors on a clothesline.

How to wash darks and lights together

Maintenance Tips for Fluffy, Fresh Towels

Enlist these tips to keep newly laundered towels looking and smelling fresh for days.

How to wash darks and lights together


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We all have a go-to piece of clothing that we can’t live without — black pants that flatter your figure, a dark T-shirt from a memorable concert or a black hat featuring a team logo that also happens to be a self-proclaimed lucky charm. No matter how strong your superstitions, your most cherished articles of clothing must be washed, and eventually your precious garments are likely to fade. After all, fibers are fragile and don’t last forever, but they don’t have to lose their color so quickly. With a little know-how and careful consideration, you’ll be able to wear your favorite dark-colored clothes until they inevitably go out of style.

First, help preserve your dark clothes by choosing a mild laundry detergent. Regular-formula liquid detergents are known to contain harmful chemical additives that damage fibers, so use a mild detergent to prevent clothes from fading. Optical brighteners — chemicals added to keep clothing brighter — can ironically cause colors (including darks) to fade over time. There are several detergents for sale that don’t contain these chemicals, such as Woolite or All Free Clear. Be sure to read labels carefully before you buy; if a detergent is listed as biodegradable, it’s more likely to be free of optical brighteners and safe to use on dark clothing.

While reading laundry tags will set you back a few minutes before you wash, taking the time to do so will keep your clothes in tip-top shape. Certain fabrics retain darker dyes, like washable nylon and wool blends, but linen and acetate are known to fade much faster. Remember to use color-safe bleach when a label specifies that non-chlorine bleach is needed; otherwise, never use liquid bleach on dark clothes. Above all, if a tag states that a garment is dry-clean only, it’s probably best that you don’t take any chances and leave the job to the pros.

To keep dark clothes looking vibrant, turn blouses, pants and shirts inside out before you wash to keep them from rubbing together. When clothing is churned inside a crowded washing machine, friction causes garments to lose their hue. Single out dark clothing, and if their tags allow, wash them together in cold water. Always wash on a short, gentle cycle, and resist tossing clothes into the dryer. Instead, hang garments to dry. If you must, use low-heat when drying clothes — temperatures above 130 degrees Fahrenheit could damage fibers and cause clothing to lose its original color.

What Makes Dark Clothes Fade: Washing or Drying?

It’s important to handle clothing carefully when washing and drying — taking a few extra precautions before you begin the chore can help keep your wardrobe looking as good as new. First, check the temperature of the water before you toss the entirety of your hamper into the wash. Warm water breaks fibers down quickly, causing colors to fade, so select the coldest temperature available on your dial. You should also choose liquid detergent over powder. Liquid detergents dissolve better in cold water, while powdered detergents aren’t guaranteed to saturate the water completely and thoroughly clean your clothes.

Be aware that in some areas, tap water contains high levels of chemicals that could also cause dark garments to fade. Hard water — water rich in magnesium and calcium — can actually lessen the effects of detergents and leave clothes dingy and dirty. While hard water can certainly damage clothing over time, there are ways you can take action to counteract these chemicals. Add a water softener when washing clothes with powder detergent, or use a safe liquid laundry detergent to help remedy the problem. For example, Tide Coldwater is specifically designed to clean clothes effectively on a cold water cycle, helping to neutralize chlorine found in tap water.

When dark clothing needs to be dried, avoid steam and high temperatures — starching or tumbling clothes in a hot dryer will cause them to lose their hue and fade over time. Dry cleaners use high heat when handling your clothes as well, so while they may be convenient, skip a trip to these outfits unless it’s absolutely necessary. If you can, hang or lay garments flat to dry, and if you use an outdoor clothes line, be mindful to keep clothing out of direct sunlight.

Liquid detergents designed for cold water may not work as effectively when temperatures drop below 40 degrees Fahrenheit, so wash clothing in warm water and rinse with cold water when it’s especially chilly outside.

Tips for Washing Dark Clothes Without Fading

Keep your denim looking better, longer.

How to wash darks and lights together

How to wash darks and lights together

Some people swear you should only hand wash your favorite pair of jeans. Others say you shouldn’t wash them at all. But most of us just toss this wardrobe staple in the washing machine along with the rest of our laundry without thinking twice.

So what’s the best thing to do? We’ve tested all kinds of denim fabrics and detergents in our Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning and Textiles Labs, and we recommend you wash denim after every three to four wears or so to keep your basic dark blue and black jeans clean, fitting well, and looking new for as long as possible.

The Best Way to Wash Jeans

New or old, you should always turn jeans inside out before placing them in the washing machine. This helps minimize the abrasion that causes fading as well as the wear that can happen along the hems, pockets, and fly and waistband edges. It’s also important to zip zippers and fasten buttons and snaps — this helps keep the jeans in shape and prevents snagging other items in the load.

For ripped jeans with frayed hems or holes, clip the openings or edges together with a clip like Sock Cops. Designed to keeps socks paired up in the wash, these clever clips can also help keep denim from fraying more than you want it to. (If your jeans are really ripped, they will fare better with hand washing.)

Use a detergent designed to preserve colors like Woolite Darks Liquid Laundry Detergent or Tide Studio Darks and Colors. They contain ingredients to help fabrics hold onto dyes and to deactivate the chlorine in the water that can fade colors. Finally, it’s best to wash jeans in cold water on a short, delicate cycle.

The Best Way to Dry Jeans

When it comes to drying jeans, be sure to turn your pair inside out and tumble dry them on a delicate cycle and low heat setting, unless the care label directs otherwise. Toss in a few dryer balls to help keep them tumbling so they’ll dry more evenly.

Plus, jeans will actually last longer and stay in shape better if you take them out of the dryer when they’re slightly damp. Simply tug them into shape, smooth out the wrinkles, hang your jeans and let them air dry. Over-drying them in the machine can cause jeans to shrink and too high a temperature can dry out and damage any spandex or elastane in the fabric that gives it stretch. If your jeans have more than 3% spandex in the fabric blend, you may want to line dry them instead.

More Tips for Washing Denim Fabrics

Avoid cramming the washer and dryer full. The more garments you stuff into a load, the faster you’ll get laundry done, but the more wear and tear your fabrics will endure. Without room to move, zippers and rivets can snag, and stitching can break. Your clothes should circulate or tumble freely, so they are thoroughly cleaned and dried and don’t emerge from the machines in a tangled knot.

Remove stains promptly. Spot clean stains so that you’ll get more wears between launderings and your jeans will spend less time in the washer and dryer. Win!

Separate light and dark jeans. You may think that it’s safe to wash all your jeans together in one load but do so and the extra dye often put on dark denim to make it look dark can transfer to light-colored fabrics. It’s best to wash and dry them in separate loads. And be cautious when carrying light colored purses or sitting on light upholstery while wearing new dark jeans. The color that rubs off may be impossible to remove from these other items. Test by rubbing a white cloth on new super dark or black jeans to see if any color comes off (this is called crocking). If it does, consider washing them once or twice before wearing.

How to Wash Corduroy So It Lasts

Corduroy is such a flexible, cool weather material. Paired with a T shirt it’s a great transition piece and layered with a sweater it will keep you warm without the bulk.

The key to corduroy looking like new after each wear is to give it special attention and properly launder it.

If it’s a blazer, it should be left to a professional to clean.

How to wash darks and lights togetherCorduroy pants can be washed at home if you turn them inside out to protect the textured side (nap) from matting down. Corduroy’s nap and material, 100% cotton, attracts lint. It’s VERY hard to remove the lint once it’s attached itself to the nap so be sure to do wash them inside out. And, don’t wash your corduroy with any material that produces a lot of lint, like fleece, felt or terry materials (sweaters, jackets, towels).

Before washing, read the care label to make sure the fabric is machine washable. Keep color in mind when choosing a water temperature. Choose a gentle cycle and if your corduroy is dark, wash in cold water. If it’s a pastel color, you can wash in warm water (unless the care label says otherwise). If you’re including other clothing in the wash, wash darks with darks and lights with lights.

Tumble dry on extra low for just a bit then hang them to dry. Or, you could hang them to dry then tumble for ten minutes on extra-low in the dryer to fluff the nap of the corduroy and make it soft. Corduroy has a tendency to shrink in the legs if you dry them in too much heat.

When you remove corduroy from the dryer, shake it out and hang. You shouldn’t need to iron them after they are dry. If you want to take an iron to them, be sure to iron them inside out. You can remove any lint with a lint brush in the same direction as the nap.

Follow these steps to a “T” and you’ll keep your corduroy looking like new!
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How to wash darks and lights together

Turn down the heat—in your washing machine, that is—when it works for clothes and for your routine.

Helping the environment and saving money, all from your laundry room? That’s the promise of cold-water washing.

While those benefits are enticing, it’s important to know when cold-water washing works. Here are some suggestions for how to decide between cold and hot washing.

When (and Why) Cold Water Washing Works

By design, modern washers are well equipped to handle cold water. Not only are modern washers designed for cold water, but many detergents have enzymes that can start to work in temperatures as low as 60℉, and cold-water detergent also enhances results.

Cold water is fine for most clothes and other items that you can safely put in the washing machine. It can remove many stains from clothing, including grass on your kid’s jeans or makeup smudges on a sweater.

Delicate fabrics (lace and silk) and dark, colorful fabrics actually do best in cold water.

Not all stains respond to warmer water. For example, blood and sweat can actually set into fabric in hot water. Also, hot water tends to shrink, fade, and wrinkle certain fabrics.

By not heating the water in your washing machine, you may reduce your energy costs with every load. An estimated 75 to 90 percent of all the energy your washer uses goes to warming up the water, so switching to colder water can lower your gas or electric bill.

Cold-water washing means clothing is less likely to shrink or fade and ruin clothes.

Cold water can also reduce wrinkles, which saves energy costs (and time) associated with ironing.

3 Tips: When Cold Water May Not Work

Sometimes, though, warm or hot water works better based on the fabric or the need. Take fabric: Knits and synthetic fabrics (such as spandex, nylon, polyester, and rayon blends) are easier to wash in warm water.

If sanitizing is the goal—say you or someone in your family is sick—washing clothing and bedding in hot water can help stop the spread of germs.

Climate can pay a role, too. In cold-weather states, where tap water reaches 40℉ or lower in the winter, detergents may not perform well. In these areas, warm or hot water may be necessary to get clothes clean.

How to wash darks and lights together

Cold vs. Hot: The Label Is Always Right

If you’re unsure whether a particular item needs warm water, read the label:

Most labels show a laundry symbol that looks like a square tub with a wavy line for water

The Cold Water Washing Verdict?

Want to save money while helping the environment? Cold-water washing may be the best choice—but check the label and the stain first.

How to wash darks and lights together

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Can you bleach grey clothes? Find out whether or not you can wash grey with white clothes to ensure you get the best results without ruining your laundry.


I wanted to address RB’s question from last week on mixing grays with the whites.I think it’s great that you have the sweaty clothes (exercise is great!!). And I know just what you mean about wanting to make sure they get clean and disinfected. Nothing better than detergent and Clorox® Regular Bleach2 for that job.


It’s usually OK to put grays in the whites load with bleach. A couple of things to consider here:

First, since it probably is a cotton item, we want to make sure that it can be safely bleached. So you will want to perform the simple bleachability test first on the garments in question. Any color change noted will give you a clue about how fast the hue may change. I would expect some small portion of the grey to be bleached out each time you wash, but my experience is that this is usually almost imperceptible. A larger change would make you reconsider adding it to whites since there is concern about dye transfer to the other white items.

Second, if the items are a set (shorts and shirt), always wash both items together. Since you can expect a slight color change to occur, this will help keep the set looking the same.

Knowing how to remove colour stains from your clothes will help you keep them looking like new for longer. Here are some simple methods you can employ to keep your clothes stain free.

Updated 25 January 2022

How to wash darks and lights together

How to wash darks and lights together

The best way to keep your clothes stain-free is to prevent them from getting stained. However, there are some stains which are unavoidable like sweat, perfume, make up etc. On other occasions there’s the accidental gravy spill or a load mix-up of white clothes with dark coloured clothes which leaves behind tough stains. Read on to know how to remove colour stains from clothes.В

The method of treating the stains varies according to the type of stain and the type of fabric. You must be careful about the products you use to wash your clothes. If you are using a product for the first time, run a small test on a small area of the clothing to avoid any untoward reaction.В В

Why Should You Wash Your Clothes After Every Use?

We suggest you to wash your clothes after each and every use. You may not notice some stains on the first glance like a sweat patch in the underarms. However, if you run a hot press over the garment before wearing it again, the heat will make the stain more prominent and permanent. For other kinds of stains like food stain or colour stains, you will have to act immediately. The stain will penetrate into the fabric if you do not treat it quickly.В В

What Causes Colour Run in Wash?

You get colour run in the wash because the dye is loose and not colourfast. The problem intensifies when you are washing your clothes at a high temperature. You can easily avoid amplifying this problem. Always wash your dark and bright coloured clothes at a lower temperature, preferably cold water.В В

How to Prevent Dye Transfers?В

A widely common laundry mishap is running of colour from one garment to another. You can easily prevent that from happening if you follow safe laundry practices. Here are some tips to help people avoid such accidents.В

The manufacturers might issue a warning for dark coloured items like your denim jeans. Read the care label to know if your garment needs to be washed separately. Another point to remember is to avoid washing your light and dark coloured clothes together. It increases the risk of dye transfers.В

Do not mix the questionable clothing items with the rest of your laundry load. Wash it separately. For example, if a red shirt is known to bleed colour, it is best to hand wash it separately in a bucket. Put out the clothes for drying as soon as the wash cycle ends. Ensure that you do not forget about the wet clothes in the machine drum. The longer you leave them wet in your washing machine, the greater the possibility of colour transfer.В

How to Remove Colour Stain from Clothes?

If you spot a colour stain on your clothes, it is important not to panic. You can remove the stain from your clothes. Follow the steps given here.В

Laundry is an important part of our daily lives, from washing to wearing. Whether you’ve had the same laundry routine for years, or you’ve never done a load of laundry in your life, follow these tips to do your laundry the Downy way.

How to wash darks and lights together

How to wash darks and lights together

1. Assemble the right tools for the job

Before you separate dark clothes from light and delicate fabrics from rough, you need to have the right laundry products to get the job done. We suggest the following:

2. Sort your colors

Separate darks from lights and delicate fabrics from more durable garments. When in doubt use cold water, especially for dark clothes to avoid shrinking, fading, and bleeding of dyes. Using cold water saves energy and resources, too. For heavily soiled whites or light colors, however, warm or hot water may be the best bet.

3. Pretreat stains

The sooner you address splotches and spills, the more successful you’ll be getting them out. Keep Tide To Go Instant Stain Remover with your laundry supplies to dab dirt, grease, and other spills away before they set. Just make sure stains are gone (rewashing may be necessary) before putting clothing in the dryer, as the heat will set the stain and make it harder to remove.

4. Prep clothes

Get clothes ready for the washer and dryer by closing zippers, hooks, and snaps, and fastening any Velcro closures. Unbutton all buttons (button holes can tear in the washer). Empty pockets and turn them inside out. Make sure socks aren’t bunched up, and unroll cuffs on pants and shorts. Tie any sashes or bows to prevent tangling. Put delicate items, such as lingerie and fine knitwear, in a zippered mesh bag.

5. Choose the perfect Tide detergent

Tide has a range of detergents to choose from, so consider your specific laundry needs. Do you want your colors to stay true? Do you want to avoid dyes and perfumes? Or do you want to fight sports-related stains and odors? No matter what your situation, we suggest using a Tide Detergent for all of your laundry needs. Read the usage instructions on the label to ensure you use the product correctly.

6. Protect against odors with Fresh Protect

If you want laundry that stays fresh all day, add Downy Fresh Protect to neutralize bad odors as you move through your day—it’s like a deodorant for your clothes.

7. Add Downy Fabric Conditioner

While detergent cleans and Fresh Protect neutralizes odors, Downy softens, freshens and protects clothes. Top loaders and front loaders behave differently, so first, check out how to use Downy with your washer. Downy conditions your clothes, not only softening, but also protecting them from stretching, fading, and fuzz.

8. Fight static cling with a dryer sheet

Determine which items can go in the dryer and which need to hang-dry. Add your machine-dryable clothes to the dryer, then place a Downy Dryer Sheet on top of them. Not only will using a Downy Dryer Sheet help fight static cling, but it also will help add even more softness and freshness to your finished laundry.

9. See 7 tips for doing laundry the Downy way

Watch the video to learn how the laundry experts at Downy wash their clothes.

Cleaning black clothing can make it fade, but it still needs washed. Try a detergent designed specifically for them.

How to wash darks and lights together

There’s something that’s incredibly satisfying about a black outfit. It’s an easy way to pull off the Parisian look I’m personally always striving for, while not having to worry too much about wrinkles. Plus, with a little extra weight since Covid, I’m desperately leaning into the notion that black is a slimming color.

And so, over the last few years, I’ve amassed my fair amount of black tees, jeans, beanies, and even a pair of overalls. It’s easy to match and I can fake looking put-together when really I just rolled out of bed for my next Zoom meeting. But there’s a downside to this uniform. Yep, you guessed it: fading. What was once my ultra-chic head-to-toe ensemble noir now is a bit more grey, which just doesn’t have the same Alain Delon (a famous French actor) effect I’m always striving for. On top of that, it’s a pitiable thing to try to match black jeans with an aged and grey tee. Something about it looks off. It ruins the mood.

Why Black Clothing Fades

Darker clothing contains dye. It’s a simple fact, no matter whether it was altered before or after being assembled. Washing a darker garment will not only clean dirt and debris from its surface but also strip the dye ever so slowly. It washes away. Wear can do this as well, because abrasions reveal light spots (see: raw denim) and the loosening of fibers causes less light refraction (making the shirt seem brighter). The sun, despite tanning skin, fades colored clothing, too.

How Dark Detergents Work

Detergents designed for darker clothing contain chemicals that slow the process. They can’t technically restore the color, but they’ll trap the ink before it lifts from the material. (I’ve heard coffee can bring back a bit of the lost black, though.) Some detergents tighten the fiber to reduce the shirt’s overall vibrancy.

The Best Detergents for Black Clothes

If you’re looking to save those perfectly inky Levi’s or that vintage band tee, keep reading.

The products and services mentioned below were selected independent of sales and advertising. However, Simplemost may receive a small commission from the purchase of any products or services through an affiliate link to the retailer’s website.

Nothing is worse than buying a fresh pair of jeans or black shirt, only to find that after a few washes, they have faded to a dull, muted color.

According to Real Simple, faded blacks are the result of warm water breaking down fibers, and although an easy suggestion would be to never wash your dark outfits, your clothes do have to get clean. Taking multiple trips to the dry cleaner is not only time consuming, but expensive too.

If you own a dark wardrobe and want to keep your clothing clean and crisp without fading, try these six tips that can help preserve your darker clothes.

1. Spot Treat Between Washes

Unless your clothing is really dirty or you’re very active in them, you can go four to five times without washing them. If you have any minor stains or spills, spot-treat them using a stain remover, gently blotting the affected area and letting air dry.

2. Wash On Cold

Whenever you do run a dark cycle, always use cold water. Warm water can hasten dye loss, so use a short, cool cycle to help preserve the fabric’s dye and fibers.

3. Turn Them Inside Out

Turning your dark clothing inside out minimizes the friction from rubbing against other clothing, which can break their fibers. Don’t forget to also close zippers and fasten any hooks.

4. Wash Only With Like Clothing

Keep your lights with your lights and your darks with your darks. Heavy items can ruin delicate clothing, and washing items of the same weight ensure they get properly cleaned with the appropriate cycle.

5. Use A Specialized Detergent

Use a specialized detergent for cold-water loads that can help neutralize the chlorine found in tap water, which can fade color. Use a small amount of detergent, as too much soap can leave a streaky residue on dark clothing.

6. Hang To Dry

The heat of the dryer can cause dark clothes to fade, so lay flat or hang dry whenever washing a dark load. If you do need to use a dryer, make sure you choose a short cycle time and the lowest temperature possible to avoid over-drying.

  • English (US)

Well, is your shirt light or dark? 😊

  • English (US)

It means wash dark colors separately from other light clothing.

  • English (US)
  • Spanish (Mexico)

all dark clothing is washed separately for white clothing

  • English (US)

separate the shirts in washing.

Dark colored shirts should be washed separately from the white colored shirts

  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • English (US)
  • Spanish (Mexico)

yes it does

  • English (US)

@ethantpe Does it say anything else?

  • English (US)

@ethantpe yes, it does.

  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • Traditional Chinese (Taiwan)
  • English (US)
  • What does He’s too ill to come in today. (does “come in” here have the same meaning as the single.
  • What does “At that time, more than eleven hundred people were inside the large dark facility that.
  • What does “this is the personal strength you have that enables you to do something.” could you ex.
  • What does Please explain the meaning of these words: Fellow Lad Lass Obliterate Breathtaking.
  • What does Could someone let me know the meaning of a “pullover” in the situation below? It does n.
  • How do you say this in English (US)? i have just finish wash dishes
  • wash supplies 是洗漱用品吗
  • You should hurry up and wash your face so that you don’t fight over the sink. Does this sound nat.
  • What does are you hitting on me? mean?
  • What does Killin’ it mean?
  • What does whenever mean?
  • What does I’m movin’on without you mean?
  • What does the body count mean?
  • What does You won’t catch me up that easily. mean?
  • What does That’s why we have to wear his consent mean?
  • What does digging over mean?
  • What does “chew his way” in “Don’t let Dennis chew his way out of this one.” mean?
  • What does The rabbit is bunchy mean?
  • What does what’s your body count mean?
  • What does smash or pass mean?
  • What does cum mean?
  • What does My heart goes tippity -tap-tap when I hold your hand. What does tippity-tap-tap mean mean?
  • What does What’s your body count mean?
  • Have Koreans heard of Nepal? what do they think about Nepalese people?
  • 毎月って何と言いますか。一番多くの言い方を教えてください。

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Consider matching bath and hand towels that feel like they came straight from the spa a new status symbol—or at least a sign that you’re finally an adult. But here’s a secret: You don’t have to spend money constantly replacing your towels—just treat them right the first time and they’ll last you for many years. Here’s how to wash towels the right way, and just in case you run into any issues along the way, some solutions for musty odors and dingy-looking towels as well.

How Often to Wash Towels

Before we dive into the right technique for washing your towels, let’s cover how often you should be washing them. Towel washing frequency is one of those things that divide even the closest of families—some believe they should be switched out after every use, while others swear they can survive for weeks without a soak. You only use your towel after getting clean, so it can’t get too dirty, right?

To put a hamper (ha) on this debate once and for all, we turned to a laundry expert. According to Tide & Downy principal scientist Mary Johnson (and Consumer Reports), a common bath towel can be used three or four times—under normal circumstances—before it needs to be tossed into the washer. Hand towels should be replaced very two days.

That’s because even if you can’t see it, a common towel can have a party of yeast, mold, and E. coli growing on it. Even though the water washes some of it off, others will stick around and transfer onto your towel during your post-shower rubdown. “Our body constantly produces sweat, salt, sebum, and skin cells, and much of this can be transferred to towels,” says Johnson. That’s not to mention other potential body soils and dirt that can collect over time, including mucus, dandruff, makeup, and beauty product remnants. These things will thrive in a dark, steamy bathroom, making your towels particularly vulnerable to bacteria buildup.

Note that this frequency specifically applies to normal circumstances, meaning they have been left to dry properly (spread out on a towel rack to reduce moisture), not bunched up and crumpled up on the floor. The condition of the person using the towel matters, too. If someone in your family is or has been sick, it’s best to replace the towel after every use to prevent the spread of bacteria.

If you’re convinced that you can go longer without washing, consider this: Rubbing yourself down with a dirty towel does not do your skin any favors. It can put you at risk for acne (and even infection), so your towels could be causing your recent breakouts without you knowing it.

If you can’t quite remember how many times you’ve used your towel, Johnson says a good indicator is the musty towel smell. “Stink and odor are caused by mildew invisible to the naked eye, but not to our noses,” she says. “If your towels look clean but still smell bad, it means they’re not truly clean.”

How to wash darks and lights together

Ah, the washing machine. Arguably one of the great inventions of our era, this device has freed up hours of time and energy. But even now, some questions remain. Namely, is washing clothes in hot water always the way to go? Or is all that heat doing your favorite shirt more harm than good?

Today, we’re breaking down the pros and cons of the hot-water debate. Here’s how to wash clothes with the proper water temperature.

How to wash darks and lights together

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Washing Clothes In Cold Water Vs Hot Water

Pro: Hot Water Gets the Job Done

Hot water is the best option for clothes that have been lived-in—workout pants, socks, and boxers, for starters. It’s not the most gentle temperature, but it powers through dirt and odors. Hot water has the most cleaning power because it speeds up the chemical reaction of the detergent. This means decreased wash times and less detergent. If you want to guarantee your clothes will smell clean and fresh the next day, wash them in hot water.

Pro: Hot Water Kills Germs

Flu bug going around your child’s school? Just got off an airplane? Washing clothes in hot water is a great defense against germs, bacteria, and viruses. To kill germs and allergens, you must wash in temperatures of 140 F or more, so toss the potentially infected bed linens and clothing into a hot wash and let the water do what it does best—kill germs!

But setting your hot water tank at 140 F can be dangerous, especially if you have children. A safer option would be to use a washer with a sanitizing setting. If your washer has a sanitize cycle that meets NSF standards, it will kill 99.9 percent of bacteria, viruses, and allergens.

If the water in your washer doesn’t get hot enough to kill germs, you can use white vinegar. When combined with your regular laundry soap or baking soda, white vinegar disinfects your laundry and gets it fresh and clean.

Pro: Hot Water Molecules Move Fast

Hot water will remove water soluble stains like tomato sauce, wine, and blood more quickly.
The faster the water molecules are moving, the greater the chance they will blast themselves into the fabric to loosen and remove dirt, grease, and stains.

That all sounds great. Unfortunately, all that cleaning energy comes at a cost.

Con: Hot Water is Environmentally Unfriendly

Over the last decade or so, we’ve grown increasingly concerned about the environment. A lot of the energy used to wash a load of laundry is funneled directly into heating the water—the latest studies suggest up to a third of the energy needed to wash a load goes into producing the heat.

That energy is produced via electricity, which is largely produced by fossil fuels—and when the power plant works harder to feed your laundry machines, more and more byproducts are released into the earth’s atmosphere. Consider how much laundry you do per week, and then think about how it will spike your power bill and affect the environment!

Con: Hot Water Can Damage or Discolor Clothing

The next time you’re doing laundry, consider what kind of clothing you’re washing. Hot water can cause bright colors to run and fade, and can shrink certain types of fabric. Hot water can also damage certain synthetic fabrics like polyester, nylon, and vinyl. The heat breaks down the fibers and can ruin the fabric.

Con: Hot Water Can Damage Delicate Fabrics

It’s often recommended to use cold water for delicate fabrics, such as anything made with lace, wool, or silk. Hot water can set stains on delicate fabrics and can cause them to shrink, fade, and permanently wrinkle. These fabrics are sensitive to temperature and cleaning solutions, so use a detergent made for delicates. If you don’t hand-wash these items, consider running them through a cold wash on the gentle cycle instead.

Do You Wash Whites in Hot or Cold Water?

You can wash whites in hot or cold water. Cold water will do the job for most of your laundry, but it won’t do any sanitizing. Sanitizing clothes and other laundry with your washer’s hot setting is necessary in certain situations, such as if someone in your home is ill, or you use cloth diapers.

Hot or Cold Water for Stains?

Should you use hot or cold water to remove stains? While hot water can often kill more bacteria, cold water is often best to get out stains. Fresh, stain-free laundry isn’t just about water temperature, of course. Not only do you have to know whether to use hot or cold water for stains, you have to consider the color of the fabric and type of stain. For the best results, you’ll want to pretreat stains using safe, natural cleaners you probably already have on hand.

For stains on whites, lemon or lime juice has a natural bleaching action that works on everything from underarm stains to rust stains. For colors, white vinegar is safer to use than bleach, doesn’t stain fabrics, and leaves your clothes smelling fresh. Along with pretreating, use these tips for removing stains from your clothes and which water temperature to use:

  • For coffee, wine or juice stains, dab the stain with a paper towel to get out the excess liquid, then wash in cold water.
  • For most food stains, like ketchup, mustard and jelly, scrape off the excess goop, then wash in cold water.
  • For blood stains, soaking the fabric in cold water then washing in cold water gets the blotch out.
  • For sweat stains, wash in cold water. Hot water can discolor clothing when mixed with the oil.
  • For chocolate stains, soak in cold water first to cut the grease, then rub with detergent and wash in hot water.

The best place to start when you’re debating between washing laundry in hot or cold water is to read the label. You’ll find the best care instructions to keep your laundry looking newer longer.

And if you don’t feel like folding those linens after all that washing and drying, you can count on The Maids to finish the job. Not only do our house cleaning professionals change linens, we also scrub hard kitchen floors, disinfect tubs, and clean the windows. Give yourself a break. Call 1-800-THE-MAIDS today for a free price quote.

you shouldn’t wash it with dark colors? Or that you should?

So basically does it mean “wash dark colors (including this) separately from anything else” OR “wash dark colors separately from this article.”

I’m confused because I have a brown sweater (which is kinda dark) and it says that on it. so idk. lol thankss! =)

7 Answers

only wash the brown sweater with dark things, it does not have to be washed by itself. but you are always supposed to wash dark colors seperately, at least the first time.

Wash Dark Colors Separately

Why is this posted in polls and surveys? Shouldn’t it be posted in laundry?

Don’t put whites or light colored clothes in the wash together with the dark clothes. The dark will bleed into the light colored stuff.

yes u wash dark colors with dark colored clothing. so your brown sweater will wash with ur dark denims or anything dark u have. together

you just wash dark clothing altogether, but separately from white and light colored clothing and any other article of clothing.

No just shove it all in.

A good tip is, in your white washing, put a red sock in there, it makes the wash more effective.

It means the colour will probably run so wash this item of clothing with similar items of dark clothing, not with your white panties otherwise you will get puce coloured panties.

People have appreciated linen clothes for many thousands of years. Made from the fibers of the flax plant, linen is a natural fabric with its own set of unique properties. People across different nationalities, ages and demographics love linen clothes, thanks to the many benefits this amazing fabric offers. Because what’s better than clothes that look great and feel wonderful too?

From your favourite summer linen dress to take on vacation to the linen shirt that take you from office to evenings out, linen clothes are versatile, effortlessly stylish and always in fashion.

How to wash darks and lights together

Why do we love linen clothes?

Linen fabric breathes well, helping to regulate your body temperature as well as wicking away moisture from your skin. This means that you stay comfortable, whatever the season or weather.

It is also stronger than cotton fabric, making it popular for clothing and other household textiles such as bed linen, linen tablecloths and linen towels as well.

How to wash darks and lights together

Whether you’re on vacation or heading to a business meeting, linen is perfect to throw on and look instantly stylish without seeming like you’ve tried too hard. Elegant and timelessly beautiful, it’s always a smart choice for the contemporary wardrobe.

Once you’ve fallen for the charms of linen clothes, you’ll be delighted to discover how easy they are to care for. But it’s also important to give linen the attention it deserves, so we’ve got some tips on how to wash your linen clothing. Good care will help keep linens looking beautiful and feeling luxuriously soft.

What to consider before you wash linen clothes

How to wash darks and lights together

If there is a stain or mark on your linen garment try to pre-treat it before washing. Dab the stain immediately with a suitable stain remover (baking soda and white vinegar are good home solutions), testing on a non-visible are first to check the colour stays fast.

We always recommend that you check the care instructions on the label on linen garments before you wash your linen clothing, or other linen items. Here’s why:

  • Linen works effectively with different dye colors and combines well with other materials, offering great versatility for any wardrobe. But these blended fabrics may require specific care.
  • Pre washed linen clothing and fabric is less likely to shrink when washed. But it’s still important to use the recommended temperatures – some garments require cold water while others can be machine washed in warmer water.
  • How to wash darks and lights together
  • Although you can wash all pure linen dresses, tunics, trousers and shirts in a washing machine, other materials used for stitching, trim or lining may need to be dry cleaned, or you might need to hand wash them. Ignoring or being unaware of that advice can ruin your garment.
  • Poorer quality linen clothing may not wash as well as finer linens. Buying from a reputable retailer that uses top quality linen fabric in its garments means your clothes will wash better and last longer.
  • Not following the item’s washing instructions may damage or shrink the fabric. Check the label before washing or ironing linen.

How to wash darks and lights together

Washing linen clothes: what you need to know

  • Always wash your linen clothes on your machine’s gentle cycle. Avoid washing in cold or very hot water. If it is possible to select the water level in the washing machine, always use the maximum offered. Your clothing should move freely.
  • Do not crowd the washing machine with too many items at once. This can twist or pull the linen fabric out of shape.

How to wash darks and lights together

  • Make sure that any other items in the washing machine are similar to your linen clothes in terms of color, weight and washing instructions.
  • If you hand wash linen clothes, only use a gentle swishing motion – never wring, twist or scrub the fabric. Hand washing is recommended for clothes that are not heavily soiled, or for linen fabric with a loose weave. This might be more easily damaged during a machine wash.

How to wash darks and lights together

  • Linen clothes, like all other linen home textiles, must be washed in lukewarm temperatures – never in cold or hot water. Does linen shrink? Yes it does, especially if you wash it in too hot temperatures (above 40C is not recommended). If your linen clothes are vintage or are not pre-washed you should expect them to shrink a bit after the first wash, no matter what water temperature you use.

How to wash darks and lights together

  • Use a mild detergent for washing and make sure that any residue is completely rinsed off the piece of clothing before drying.

How to dry your linen clothes

  • If your linen garment is pre-washed during the production process, it is safe to dry it in a tumble dryer. Set to a low the drying temperature and remove the garment while it is still slightly damp.
  • Always try to air dry your linen clothes flat. Hangers or clothespins can create marks on the fabric, and may also cause the garment to lose its original shape.
  • We love the natural wrinkles in linen fabric, but if you like to iron your linen clothes make sure they are still damp before you start.

How to wash darks and lights together

Treat your linen clothes well and they will keep on looking amazing for years to come. Which makes them a sustainable alternative to fast fashion fads. Whether they can be machine washed and tumble dried, or need more gentle care, linen clothes get softer with every wash.

From summer linen shirts to your flowy linen dress that you layer with woollens in autumn, linen clothing is an all-year choice.

How to wash darks and lights together

For tips on caring for linen bedlinen go here.

For more linen care tips visits Houserituals website.