- Follow your washing machine instructions and the washing instructions on clothing care labels.
- Stick to the temperature recommended by the manufacturer. If your clothes are really dirty, don't just increase the temperature of your wash: use stain remover.
- Don’t mix dark and light colours.
- Wash brand new coloured garments on their own the very first time.
- Always check the pockets of your clothes are empty before you put them in the washing machine and close Velcro fastenings.
- Don’t overload your machine: it encourages creases and makes for extra ironing!
- Turn coloured clothes, sweaters, jeans and tops with motifs inside out before putting them in the machine.
- To find out if stain remover will make the colour of a garment fade, test by pouring a tiny amount of remover onto a damp, hidden part of the garment, sandwiching it between two white sheets and then ironing on a hot setting. If no marks appear, the colour won’t fade.
- Protect your underwear, tights and stockings by putting them in a pillowcase in the washing machine.
- Don’t use too much washing powder or liquid. It won’t wash any better and the excess can end up clogged in your clothes.
- Tumble dry your clothes gently (eg at 800, which is less aggressive on your clothes than higher spin cycles).
- When handwashing, dry your washing in a bath towel to prevent it from twisting in all directions.
- Don’t leave your washing in the dryer to crease. As soon as it’s done, take it out.
- Natural drying is better than tumble drying. Wool and cotton garments should be air-dried flat to prevent them shrinking.
- Don’t expose drying washing to direct sunlight: it can make colours fade. Use good coat hangers, preferably wooden ones which won’t rust.
- Iron your clothes inside out to preserve their colour and avoid 'iron shine.'
- Stick to the recommended temperature on the care label when ironing and avoid using steam when ironing at a low temperature (110°C).
- Fold trousers and jeans along the crease and not the hem.
- Use non-phosphate washing products with over 90% biodegradable surfactant agents.
- Tumble-dryers use lots of energy. Dry your washing naturally as far as you can.