Lingerie Care - How to Make Your Delicates Last Longer

Lingerie Care – How to Make Your Delicates Last Longer

Lingerie is a precious part of our wardrobe, but it can be easy to forget that it requires special care. Keeping your lingerie looking its best involves separating colors and fibers, washing correctly, and storing properly.

Start by sorting your delicates by color (lace with lace, cashmere with cashmere) and fabric type. Never combine lace and sequins, as they can snag or stretch.


Forget frayed lace, stretched straps, and discolored briefs – taking the proper care of your lingerie keeps it looking and feeling great for many years. The key is sorting your dirty laundry and washing your delicates properly. It’s easier than you might think with some planning and a suitable detergent.

Sort your lingerie into lights and darks before washing to avoid color bleed. Wash with cold or lukewarm water, as hot water can shrink your garments and fade colors. Use a detergent specially designed for delicates or a homemade cleaning solution (one cup of warm water, one teaspoon of mild detergent, and a few drops of essential oil) to get your delicates clean and bright.

Do not put lingerie in the dryer, which can damage fabric and elastics. Hang to dry or lay flat on a towel. Do not wring or rub dry, as this can cause creases and marks.

If you must wash your lingerie from Adam & Eve in the machine, always place it in a lingerie mesh bag to prevent hooks and straps from catching on other items in the wash and ruining your bras. Use the gentlest cycle, and never add fabric softener. If you can’t hang your lingerie to dry, skip the dryer and let it air dry on a drying rack or flat on a towel.


Whether lace, silk, or velvet, intimate apparel is filled with delicate fabrics and intricate details that require careful washing. A wrong wash can damage lingerie, making it look worn out and misshapen. It can also cause the elastic to stretch and lose its elasticity over time. This is why following the proper washing and drying instructions is so important.

The care label on your lingerie will often indicate how to wash it, but the most common recommendation is to hand-wash all delicates. This can help prevent fading and stretching in hot water. If you use a washer, choose cold or warm water and select the delicates cycle with mild detergent. A mesh delicates bag is an excellent choice to prevent hooks from bras catching on other items in the washing machine and can help keep the shape of your lingerie.

When washing by hand, sort your lingerie by type and wash them separately to avoid color bleeding. For example, don’t combine lace with sequined pieces, as they could snag each other. You can also sort by color to prevent the dark colors from bleeding into the lighter ones. When you’re finished, re-shape your lingerie as it dries to maintain its original shape and to avoid shrinking or warping.


Lingerie storage is essential in keeping your delicates fresh and feeling soft. Storing your lingerie adequately protects it from snags, pulls, and damage and allows you to locate items quickly when needed. Keeping your lingerie clean and free of dirt, dust, pet hair, and other contaminants is also essential. Wiping drawers, boxes, or storage containers regularly is a good practice. Adding fabric sachets or drawer liners can help keep your lingerie smelling fresh and soft, too.

Organizing and storing your lingerie depends on what type of pieces you have in your collection and how much closet space you have available. More extravagant pieces, like lace bras or camisoles that you wear with skirts or dresses, can be stored in the closet to avoid unwanted wrinkles. For more practical pieces, such as everyday bras or panties, you can keep them in drawers with dividers and organizers to prevent them from getting tangled.

When packing and storing your lingerie, placing each piece in its bag or pouch is always a good idea, especially when traveling. This will prevent the lingerie from snagging on other clothing or bags and help ensure the pieces stay intact in transit. In addition, if your lingerie has any fragile embellishments or delicate fabrics, you should place them in their bags or pouches to ensure they don’t get pulled or snagged on anything else while in transit.


The lingerie world is full of intricate details and delicate fabrics that demand special care. It is also surprisingly easy to make your intimates last longer by following simple yet effective washing and wearing tips.

Before diving into laundry day, check the label on your lingerie for specific washing instructions. Lingerie labeled ‘hand wash only’ or ‘cold water only’ will last much longer than those put through the dryer (one of the most common causes for bra wires to break and elastics to become snagged).

A chief executive of a cleaning product company recommends hand-washing your lingerie whenever possible, as it kills bacteria and brightens colors. She suggests filling a basin with cold to lukewarm water and adding a capful of delicate detergent. Add your lingerie to the soapy water and swish it around gently for a few minutes before rinsing.

Do not wring the garments, as this can cause them to stretch. Press the excess water and lay it flat to dry or hang it evenly on a clothesline or drying rack. Be sure to keep the garments away from radiators or direct sunlight, which can lead to fading and shriveling.

Remember to inventory your lingerie drawers at the start of each season. Discard any worn-out styles, snags, and rips, and the old ones that don’t fit you properly and take up valuable drawer space.

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