How To Actually Wash Your Lingerie At Home

Photographed by Ashley Armitage.
Prior to the pandemic, dealing with delicate lingerie felt like another chore we could get away with side-stepping, like replacing the filter in our AC units or humidifier. But now, after spending the last five months at home being confronted with all the little things we so often ignored pre-COVID, we've come to realize that those tasks that used to feel daunting, aren't quite so bad after all. And that goes for washing our delicates, too.
When many laundromats and dry cleaners closed down due to stay-at-home orders, some of us took to washing all our clothing by hand, not just delicates. If you're one of those people, you might have learned about the importance of separation. You can't just drop your new red sweater and your favorite white lace panties into the same soapy tub — that is, unless you're hoping for a new pair of fire-engine red undies. Those of you with an in-unit washer and dryer may have discovered that lingerie shouldn't go in the dryer (hi, bent underwires, stretched-out straps, and lumpy padding). And that the gentle setting on your washing machine isn't as gentle as you thought.
So, it's to the tub (large bucket, sink, etc.) we go. And while it's true that the task at hand isn't actually very tasking at all — just remember this mantra: soak, rinse, and repeat — we thought we'd still go ahead and provide you with a guide for effectively washing your underthings (and also your cloth face masks).
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