Denim, T-shirts, jogging suits — they may not be your fancy attire, but they’re yours, so why not make them last? Here are eight tips on how to take care of them.
1. Zip it up
Remember to close zippers on your favourite jeans before placing them in the washing machine. This will help keep the zipper’s teeth aligned.
2. Unstick a zipper
- If you can’t get the zipper up on your jeans, try some of these methods for lubricating it: rub a pencil, a bar of soap, a bar of paraffin, or a candle along the length of the zipper.
- Any of them will get it running smoothly again.
3. Salt softens your jeans
- If your new pair of jeans is too stiff and you don’t want to wait to break them in, throw a handful of salt into the wash with the detergent.
- The salt softens up the jeans so they won’t be too uncomfortable during those first few wearings.
4. Delay bottom fray
- There’s nothing more annoying than a pair of comfortable jeans fraying at the bottoms.
- Prevent this at the start by ironing on strips of mending tape to the hems inside each pant leg. This will keep threads in place before they start to come undone.
5. The knees go first
- If you are especially hard on your jeans, do a little preventive maintenance.
- When you get them home from the store, reinforce the knees from the inside with an iron-on jeans patch. You’ll be glad you did when your denim knees start to wear through.
6. Buy to keep: T-shirts
Though T-shirts are ubiquitous, you should still take care when purchasing this wardrobe basic.
Construction: Hold up the shirt and check the seams. Look at the bottom hems and the armholes. The T-shirt should have straight seams and should not twist to one side.
Size:T-shirts usually shrink when you wash them, so it’s best to buy them one size larger. A larger T-shirt also won’t stress at the seams when you’re exercising, working in the yard, or puttering around the house. It’ll last longer and be more comfortable to boot.
Fabric: Heavier-duty materials will outlast thinner ones and poly/cotton blends will last longer than all cotton. But on hot days, you may prefer the comfort of a lighter weight all-cotton T-shirt.
7. Turn T-shirts inside out to wash
- T-shirts with appliqués and other decorative touches should be turned inside out before washing.
- This will help preserve the embellishments and keep the T-shirt looking newer longer.