There is an age old saying that “clothes make the man,” but it is probably safe to assume that clean clothes makes an even better man. In order to make the best impression at work, on a date or just heading out to the store you can’t be a stained or wrinkled mess. Cleaning clothes might not be on the same level as rocket science, but there are a few tips and tricks that can help you look (and smell) better regardless your destination.
Check Out Labels
If you aren’t someone who wears suits every day, chances are your laundering needs will be fairly simple. Just take a quick glance at the care labels to find out what can or can’t go in the dryer and what articles should be washed on the “gentle” or “delicate” cycles (this is particularly important if you are doing laundry for the entire family, you don’t want to ruin your wife’s favorite sweater or your daughter’s favorite dress).
Divide and Conquer
Don’t be the stereotypical single guy and just dump the hamper into the washer and hope for the best. If you want your clothes to last and to look good, separate the whites and like colors into different loads. This lets you use bleach on the white clothes and prevents lighter colored clothes from getting dingy before their time.
Towels, jeans and blended fabrics can generally go in the dryer without much worry. One hundred percent cottons can shrink in the dryer and other fabrics (like wool, etc.) can stretch or suffer damage in the dryer. Your care label will give you the best indication of the ideal drying situation – if there is no label or if you have doubts you should hang or lay flat to dry. (An added bonus to hanging dry is that it will save you money on your utility bill).
Invest in an Iron
You don’t have to become a professional with an iron; you just need to be proficient. The iron will come with instructions for appropriate temperatures for certain fabrics and will allow you to make quick work of wrinkles in virtually all of your outfits so you can look your best in any situation.