(StatePoint) If you are like many people, your winter wardrobe requires a bit of extra care. Between fine cashmere sweaters, favorite woolen outerwear and your snazziest cocktail attire, your special care garments should look as crisp at the end of the season as they do today.
Unfortunately, winter often brings with it slush, mud, salt and other threats to fabrics. To protect your winter wear affordably, consider the following tips:
• Be smart about footwear: On wet or slushy days, tuck pants into durable, waterproof boots. Any delicate footwear should be brought along in a waterproof bag and changed into at your destination -- or protected by waterproof shoe covers.
• Use at-home dry cleaning: Many winter items carry tags that say “dry clean only” or will shrink when washed. Slash dry cleaning expenses up to 90 percent and skip the hassle and harsh chemicals by opting for at-home dry cleaning. Using your own dryer and the right product, you can safely and thoroughly clean your special care clothes at home without experiencing fading, shrinking or stretching.
In the case of Dryel -- which works in as little as 15 minutes for a quick refresh and in 30 minutes for a deep clean -- the heat of the dryer activates a cleaning solution that removes body soils and odors from clothes, and a fabric protection bag maintains the optimal balance of cleaning agents and heat, allowing the steam to work through the clothes, and then slowly vent vapors out of the bag and dryer. This is a convenient, cost-effective way to treat such gear as sweaters, jeans, hats, suits and more.
• Fight stains immediately: The more quickly you deal with stains, the better, so be prepared with a stain pen wherever you go, and, try to launder items that have been soiled as soon as possible. A stain pen, such as the kind provided by Dryel, can also be used at home to pre-treat garments before cleaning them.
• Know when to hang vs. fold: A big part of keeping winter clothes looking good as new is knowing how to store each item. While suit jackets, most dresses and anything that wrinkles easily should be hung (never on wire hangers), sweaters and knitwear, as well as anything stretchy that could lose its shape should be folded.
With proper care, you can protect your clothing from all of winter’s most common wardrobe woes.
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