Tit bits: How to wash your bra

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When did you last wash your bra?

A question that was asked at my dinner table last night that led to a few awkward glances and thoughtful looks [granted that two of the four women in my house work for Pant Patrol, so we really have no excuse]. The answer for all of us was longer ago than we care to admit.

I’m of the school of thought that you don’t need to wash your bra very often, if you’re not staining, soiling or sweating in them then they should only be cleaned every 5-10 wears or so. But don’t panic, the majority of things in my bra-drobe haven’t seen the business end of a bar of soap in some time.

Bra washing can be a major topic of confusion, with delicate lace, moulded cups and firm wires sending some women into a spiral of fear; so I’ll try and break the ice a little with a few ‘Tit-Bits’ to get you started.

Hand Washing

Hand washing can be the “she-who-must-not-be-named” of the garment care world, but let me tell you there’s nothing to 'bra' scared of, brands such as Kinn and Norfolk Natural Living have excellent and easy to use detergents to give your bras a new lease of life.

Simply follow the instructions on the bottle, or submerge your bra under tepid, soapy water and gently clean the underarm area so as not to distort the bras shape. Hang to dry and don’t ring out. 

Whilst we do pop 'Care for me' advice next to all of the bras that we stock, here are some examples of styles that really must be hand washed or in the shower: Mint mesh series, Mesh wired series and Satin contour series

Shower

Because I am quite lazy and forgetful when it comes to doing my bra washing, my preferred way to clean them is wearing them in the shower. Unless you're spilling spaghetti sauce down them, they don’t need an aggressive clean anyway. Your own shower gel or bar of soap has antibacterial properties and will be far more sensitive to the areas that a bra would come into contact with i.e. under the arms and in between your boobs.  

This method also ensures no distortion to the many technical elements of a bra and that your bra stays moulded to you over time, making it last longer and fit better. 

Machine Washing

Although few will ever admit, a huge number of women will bung their bras in the machine on a daily cycle and cry out when their beloved balconette has stretched, warped or torn. But fear not, the machine is not out of bounds for all bras, we just have to pitch and choose which to wash with such rigor. 

I won't be shocking any of you when I say that most modern machines have a delicate or lingerie setting, but a lot of the time this is still too aggressive for our favourite wears or to at least keep them at their best both in terms of fit and fabric wear. I suggest putting any delicate items you have in a pillowcase that can be closed before washing in the machine, this will avoid any snagging on zips or buttons and keep your delicates in check.

Bras that 'could' be machine washed: Shape sports bra, D+ lace triangle and Full support t-shirt bra

 

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