RESPONSIBLE LAUNDRY & ECOLOGICAL WARDROBE MAINTENANCE
Our products are designed to last and have a minimal environmental impact in production. We focus on water usage because fresh water is the most valuable resource on our planet.
It is estimated that 15-30% of the environmental footprint of any garment comes from the use, wearing and washing of our clothes. Therefore, we also want to help you take better care of your Pure Waste garment!
The quickest and easiest way to lower the environmental impact of the clothes we buy and wear is to make sure that our wardrobe maintenance skills are up to date. It's something each of us can do today. Taking good care of your clothes also saves you money as you don’t need to buy new clothes so often. Below, we have gathered some tips on how to take care of your clothes using less water, less energy or toxic chemicals. If you have any questions about how to take care of our products, drop us a line!
8 EASY STEPS TO RESPONSIBLE WARDROBE MAINTENANCE
1. REMOVE LARGE STAINS AND STRONG ODOURS BEFORE MACHINE WASHING.
If your clothes get stained, take care of it as soon as possible. If you are not at home, then a useful first aid is to rinse the stain with mineral water. For most stains, it is better than plain water. Most stains come off with olive oil-based Marseille soap (vegan) or gall soap. Rub soap on the stain when you get back home. When you then machine-wash your clothes, you won’t have to use a longer cycle or hotter water to get the stains out.
You don’t have to wash sweaty clothes immediately, just hang them up to dry. For sweat and other strong odours, we recommend soaking for a few hours in a bucket filled with white vinegar and lukewarm water (1/5 vinegar, 4/5 water). Smells are caused by bacteria, and they thrive in plastic-based fibres. Vinegar kills these bacteria, so it prevents and helps to fight odours. After soaking, rinse the clothes with lukewarm water and hang them to dry, preferably on finger-wide coat hangers. Washing them in a machine is not necessary after every time you use them.
2. MACHINE WASH LESS.
Generally, we machine wash our daily clothes too often. Unless you sweat a lot during the day, or your clothes get dirty daily, there is no reason to machine wash your clothes after every use. You can also freshen them up by taking them out to air. Using an undergarment (for example a tank top) protects clothes from sweating. The only clothes we should wash often are underwear, undershirts and socks.
3. SWITCH TO ECOLOGICAL DETERGENTS AND FABRIC SOFTENER.
Using too much detergent and fabric softener won’t make your laundry cleaner. The extra chemicals only add pollution, and they also cost you more. Use only the suggested amount. Adding 1-2 big spoonfuls of baking soda to each laundry load will help the detergent work more effectively. If you use liquid detergents, make sure they are free of zeolites and artificial scents. We picked our favourite laundry detergents for you.
The most ecological and easy-to-use fabric softener is white vinegar. It closes the fibres after washing, helps to keep colours better and cleans the machine as well. Use vinegar just like a regular fabric softener, but you don’t have to worry about overdoing it, as it is fully biodegradable and affordable. You can smell it a bit when the clothes are damp, but the scent fades away as they dry. If you want scented fabric softener, you can add a few drops of scented natural oils to the vinegar, such as lavender, sage or lemon.
4. LOWER THE WASHING TEMPERATURE.
When machine-washing Pure Waste clothes, we recommend using a max. 40 degrees cycle. This helps to conserve energy as the water doesn’t need to be over-heated. When using an eco-program, please put the clothes in a washing bag, so they are protected from the mechanical abrasion of the longer cycle.
5. USE A MICROFIBRE WASHING BAG TO CONTAIN LOOSE MANMADE FIBRES.
Synthetic fibres release microfibers into waterways in every wash. These microscopic particles are too small to get filtered at the water treatment plants, so some of them end up in nature. They harm aquatic ecosystems and in time they climb their way up the food chain and end up on our plates.
The best way is to machine wash synthetic fibres only when necessary. When your clothes need to be washed, put them in a microfibre washing bag to catch any loose fibres. We recommend Guppy Friend washing bags.
6. HANG TO DRY, STEAM TO REFRESH.
Clothes are best kept on hangers, rather than folded. They can also be dried on hangers. Thicker hangers help to keep the clothes in shape. Hung clothes often need no ironing after they dry. Steaming is a safe and fast option for ironing, and it is also an excellent way to freshen up clothes after a few uses.
7. DON'T CUT OFF THE CARE LABELS.
Cutting off the care labels and fibre information from clothes is a bad idea, so try to keep them, unless your skin is super sensitive. Clothing collectors and recyclers need the fibre consistency information on the clothes to sort the textiles correctly. If that information is not available, there is a chance that the clothes will not end up in fibre recycling, and all the materials and natural resources used while making them are wasted.
8. TAKE CARE OF YOUR WASHING MACHINE.
Your washing machine cannot do its job if you don’t take care of it. A clean machine will also last longer and not break down so easily. Always leave the door and detergent bowls open after the wash, so it will thoroughly dry. Clean the bowls and lint filters at least once a month from detergent residue. Using white vinegar helps to prevent bacteria growth and reduces odours in the drum.
We recommend using non-zeolite detergents, as zeolite will cake up over time inside the drum and possibly break the machine. If you mostly use low temperatures to wash your clothes, you should run a hotter cycle (60-95 degrees) once in a while for example with bed linens and towels. This will remove the zeolite residue and eliminate bacteria. Clean your machine once or twice a year with citric acid (C₆H₈O₇). Place 100 g of citric acid powder in the machine's detergent bowl and run a hot 95-degree cycle through an empty machine. Before machine-washing again, run a short hot cycle with some detergent.