How to Care for Silk Clothing

Silk is an investment. You have to plan to buy this fabric for long-term use. Picking timeless designs and avoiding quick trends can help keep your investment pieces relevant beyond seasons, but how do you wash silk clothing? How do you care for them to ensure longevity? Let’s talk about washing tips and other silk care instructions.

The Basics of Washing Silk Fabrics

Silk is a delicate material, and you may feel nervous about washing silk clothing on your own. Bear these basic reminders in mind so you can give your luxurious items the care they deserve.

Always check the silk care instructions on the label. It will tell you how a particular garment must be cleaned and cared for.

  • Never use chlorine bleach on silk fabrics. It will damage your clothes’ natural fibers.
  • Do not expose silk to direct sunlight. Long bursts of sun rays can cause discoloration or even damage the fabric.
  • Never tumble dry. The high temperature of the dryer will shrink or damage your fabric.
  • Use a mild detergent. Some brands are specifically designed for silk.
  • Check for colorfastness. Some garments may bleed during washing. Test a small area by dabbing with a wet, white cloth. Check for any color leak.

How Do You Hand-Wash Silk Clothing?

This is probably the safest way to wash silk garments, and the steps are easy to follow.

  1. Submerge your silk in a basin filled with cool water.
  2. Add a few drops of mild detergent and use your hand to mix it into the solution. Let the item soak for at least 3 minutes.
  3. Using your hands, plunge the garment up and down to remove dirt.
  4. Rinse the silk under cold water until all the soap has been washed out.
  5. Soak up the moisture using a towel. Never rub or agitate your silk.
  6. Hang it on a drying rack and keep it away from direct sunlight.

How Do You Wash Silk in a Machine?

Yes, you can wash silk in a machine. However, you must invest in a mesh bag to avoid tangling and damages.

  1. Always check the label. Some items suffer damage or color loss in the machine.
  2. Sort your laundry. Never wash silk with heavy pieces of clothing like jeans.
  3. Use mesh bags to protect your silks from abrasion.
  4. Add a detergent that is specifically designed to care for silk garments. Check the dosing instructions on the bottle.
  5. Set your machine to a delicate wash option. Also, choose the shortest spin cycle and follow the recommended temperature in the label, if possible.
  6. Soak up excess moisture using a towel.
  7. Depending on the item, hang it up or lay it flat to dry. Again, avoid direct sunlight.

Can You Dry Clean Silk?

The fabric care label should tell you if the garment can be dry-cleaned. If the label says, “dry clean only,” it is best to take it to a professional.

Caring for Silk After Washing

Caring for silk goes beyond washing and drying. You must learn how to iron silk properly to address wrinkles and creases. Here are a few tips:

  • Turn the garment inside out. Use low heat or silk setting.
  • Iron silk when dry. Never spray or wet silk when ironing.
  • Put a cloth between the item and the iron.

Storing silk should be easy. You just have to keep them in a cool, dry place. If you are planning to put the item away for a long time, keep it in a breathable plastic bag. Use a moth repellent and keep it out of the sun.

Silk is a beautiful, luxurious fabric, so it is worth taking a few measures to care for it. If you need help washing and caring for your silk clothing, Kelly’s Dry Cleaners is here to help. Call our branches in Durango and Farmington at (970) 903-1642 or (505) 564-3333.