How to maintain your clothes!! How to get rid of hard to remove stains, & pilling

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We all know the basic maintenance of clothes.  You wash them, you dry them, fold them, put them away, wear them again, repeat.  What about clothes that are hand wash only?  How to get out hard to remove stains?  And when should I dry clean?  I’m here to answer all of your questions here, at a reasonable price.
First things first.  I read in one of Nina Garcia’s books (the editor of Marie Claire magazine) that you should NOT wash your clothes every day.  And I agree with her.  When it comes to wearing & washing clothes, washing takes the most toll on your garments.  I also agree with her that you should not walk around in smelly clothes; I generally wear clothes twice before I wash them.  I think you should only wash your clothes every day if you sweat a lot.  Undergarments, obviously, you should change every day.

And the best detergent to use?  I find Arm & Hammer Oxiclean liquid detergent.  Here featured in the photo is the 1 liter bottle, which is about $5.  I get the 4.25 liter bottle, and it only costs me $8.  And it works as a great stain remover too!!  I don’t have to worry about getting Shout, any Tide sticks, or whatever.  So far it has gotten out ALL my stains.  Food stains, dirt stains, even the rings around the collars of my shirts.  Usually you will need a bucket of some kind, and place the garment in the bucket, & pour on some detergent directly onto the stain.  Let it sit for a few days, (then soak it in water if you’d like) and then you can throw it in the wash with the rest of your clothes.

Best way to wash your clothes: Always wash them on a light cycle.  This lessens the wear & tear on your garments.  If you can, once you’re done, I put them on an extra rinse cycle, & this helps take out the detergent treated-stains.

Best way to preserve your clothes when you wash them: wash most of your clothes inside out, especially your sweaters.  This will lessen pilling.  Another way to lessen pilling, is to use fabric softener.

For clothes that need to be hand washed: I don’t know about you, but I haven’t got the time to wash anything by hand.  Solution: get some laundry mesh bags!  You know what I’m talking about, the zip up bags that you can use for your intimates, as well as clothes with any beading, sequins or lace on them.  I even put the clothes inside out, inside the bag.  You can get the mesh bag at the dollar store, or at Target/Walmart.
For sweaters that itch: Or any other garments that itch: best solution: Woolite.  I always keep a small bottle on hand in case I need it.  No need to wash them separately!  I just pour in some with the load that I’m washing, & it usually takes the itch out of my sweaters.
 
 

Best way to dry your clothes: To use a drying rack.  I know that if you live in a city (like me, I live in NYC) it’s hard to hang dry your clothes, simply because of the lack of space.  BUT if you can hang dry your clothes, you are saving yourself a lot of money.  You save yourself money on the utility bill, and plus dryers do do a bit of wear & tear on your clothes.  You know how to you have to empty out the lint tray every time after you dry them?  It’s not because you have lint all over your clothes.  It’s because the dryers pounds the lint out of them.   Hang your clothes to dry.  It saves you money & plus it’s the most environment friendly.  The best drying rack?

I used to live in Italy and EVERYONE hangs their clothes to dry on these drying racks.  I found this one exclusively for you guys, on Amazon, and it’s from Italy!  It’s wonderful, and you can put it almost anywhere.  You have guests coming over?  You can fold it up & put it away.  And it only costs $28!!  Click here to shop: Drying rack
Important tip for your knits / stretchy clothes: When storing your clothes, don’t hang (on hangers) any of your sweaters, or stretchy clothes.  Fold them, put them away in a drawer, or on a shelf, etc.  Gravity will stretch them out.
To get lint/hair off your clothes: We all know about lint rollers, you can pick them up in your dollar store, Target, Walmart, but personally I don’t like them.  I hate that you can only use them for about 2 min before you have to rip off the plastic sheet again.  Opt for something else that I’ve been using:
Lint gloves!  You can get them on Amazon.com for about $10 for 2 of them.  And there’s no limit on how many times you can use them.  You can use them again, again and again.  And they will pick up all the lint/hair off your garments.  No more plastic lint rollers!
Fashion no no: DO NOT wear pilled clothes.  It makes you look a lot, a lot older.  Or that you can’t afford new clothes.
There are all kinds of ‘pilling removers’ and ‘shavers’ that are battery operated, But here’s a simple solution: get some old fashion razor blades and you can ‘cut off’ the pilling.  Or you can even take disposable razor blades and do the same thing!  And why not?  They sell a pack of them for $1 at the dollar store.  Take you lint glove / roller to pick up the the lint balls.
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Clothes that you will have to dry clean: Your blazers, and evening dresses.  You can wash most clothes nowadays, but there are a few things you can’t.  Blazers will get messed up in the wash, as well as some of your evening clothes.  There are some evening dresses that you can wash by hand; always check the care label before buying.  Look around in your local area (use Yelp.com if you need to) to find an inexpensive dry cleaner.
When you buy leather: I believe that pleather can be machine washed, but real leather CAN NOT.  Ask your local dry cleaners on their prices of leather cleaning.  If you want a real leather jacket, you will have to maintain it.  ALWAYS look at the care take label before buying a garment.  You don’t want to buy clothes that you can’t afford to clean.
When you have to iron: how to get the best out of your iron: use a spritz bottle & spray your clothes before you iron them.  This helps bring out the wrinkles.  There are times to really get out wrinkles I literally pour water on the clothes & then press them.  However, if you’re in a rush, & need to wear it right away, then opt for the spritz bottles, which you can pick up at your dollar store or Target.  Or avoid the headache altogether & buy wrinkle-free clothing.
If you can’t stand ironing: like me, I use a garment steamer.  And it brings out ALL the wrinkles in my clothes.  The only stipulation is that I have to use filtered water.  This steamer is also on Amazon and it’s amazing.  It costs only $30.
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