It's not just pro athletes who need to take care of their sportswear; we should all be washing, storing and treating our sports clothing with a little love. So we're here to give you the top tips to do just that! Plus, we answer some customer questions about how to properly care for sportswear.
Sportswear or athleisure clothes are made from high tech synthetic fabrics, meaning they take a little extra thought when washing them - but don't worry, here are our sportswear care basics to get you started!
1. Always wash your activewear at cool temperatures - we recommend no warmer than 30 degrees. High temperatures are something that can irreparably damage performance fabrics - fibres like elastic or mesh in your sportswear will suffer especially from hot treatments, so washing cooler is always best.
2. Grab yourself a powerful liquid detergent. Our No.5 Eco Wash for Sportswear has a refreshing fragrance of lime and cooling peppermint, combined with deodorising essential oils, eucalyptus and lemongrass, leaving your clothes fresh and invigorated, ready for your next workout! It's a useful secret weapon for odours and stains caused by mud and deodorant.
3. Put down the fabric softener! That's right, fabric conditioner or softener is sportswear's worst enemy. It can inhibit the moisture wicking properties of fabric, as well as the water-repellent properties and breathability of the fabric - plus, it forms a kind of barrier over the fibres, making odours trickier to wash away. Absolutely avoid fabric softener in your sports laundry!
Those are the basics when it comes to washing sportswear - hopefully now you won't be making any sports kit faux pas.
To help you out even more, we've collated some tricky sportswear care questions from our customers, and given our best advice. You're welcome!
Q - "Should I be machine washing or hand washing my yoga clothes?"
Great question - we recommend doing whatever is easiest for you. It's true that hand washing is much more gentle than machine washing, so if you want to take ultimate care of your yoga clothes, hand washing will help them last longer. So long as you're washing at a low temperature though, either is fine!
However, when it comes to drying your kit, always air dry rather than machine dry. Dryers can wear down the delicate performance fabrics, and sometimes, machines don’t get clothes completely dry, and then they sit in a hot, moist pile, a haven for odours and bacteria!
Q - "Sometimes my gym clothes come out of the wash with random tiny holes, but I don't think it's moths, any tips?"
A top tip is to make sure all features, fastenings and embellishments are covered when washing your sportswear. Zip up all zips and fasten Velcro fastenings on garments before washing, as otherwise they may catch and cause tiny tears in your other garments. For extra protection, wash any garments with zips or Velcro in a microfibre bag, and wash the garment inside out to avoid any catching. This may have been the cause of those little holes, give our tips a try!
Q - "What's the best way to wash swimwear?"
Most swimwear contains spandex, which can easily stretch and break down when exposed to perspiration and body oils, but also pool chlorine and chemicals - so washing swimwear as soon as possible after wearing is essential! We recommend rinsing the swimwear under a cold tap as soon as possible, which will remove a lot of the chlorine or salt. Then, fill a sink with cool water and a small amount of No.5 Eco Wash for Sportswear , submerge the garment, swish for a couple of minutes and rinse well. Again, you'll want to steer clear of fabric conditioner, and air drying is preferable to avoid misshaping the swimwear, especially if it has padding or embellishments.
Q - "How can I stop my sports shoes from smelling after a workout?"
To prevent odours from lingering in general, we recommend airing your sportswear after use - try and hang/keep them in a ventilated are rather than shoving them straight into a teeny gym bag or washing basket. For shoes, it may sound odd, but popping tea bags into your shoes after a workout can absorb some of the nasty odours. It works because shoe odour is usually caused by bacteria in moisture, and tea bags are super-absorbent, so they dry out that dampness that tends to linger and replace it with a clean herbal scent.
If those odours in your trainers are persisting, remember, you can throw them in the washing machine for an extra clean - just make sure they're washed on their own, at a low temperature!
To help target lingering odours in your sportswear, you can also try storing it with our Natural Fragrance Bags, which'll fill your wardrobe with refreshing lavender and patchouli scent, and deter moths at the same time!
Got any more questions for us? Pop over to our Instagram @clothesdoctoruk or send us an email and we may answer in a future blog!
Now your sportswear is looking great, it's time to boss the rest of your laundry routine - shop our full range today!