Taking Care of Your Clothes

Make sure your clothes last

By TIERRA

Outdoor clothes that are well taken care of, will feel better, protect you better and last longer. In general, it’s all about washing your clothes and keep them clean, but not too often. To air your garment is often enough. This saves both the environment and your garment. If you follow these basic tips for taking care of your clothing, you will noticeably increase its lifespan:

• Do not wash it too often, and wash it correctly. Instead, air and use a clothes brush
• Close zippers and cords when washing, this reduces wear and tear
• Don’t use softeners since it effects the breathability of the material in a negative way
• Prevent wrinkles by hanging up your garment to dry using a good clothes hanger, and then fold
• Change clothes regularly, wearing the same clothes every day wears them out, layer up!

And most important, always check the care label for each garment to see how it is best treated.

If a garment breaks you are always welcome to a Tierra reseller to get advice and help. Find your nearest reseller in our Store Finder.

"In general, it's all about washing your clothes and keep them clean, but not too often"

Shirts, Tees, Tops and Knitwear

To increase the length of life, printed garments should be washed inside out. To keep the best possible fit of your garment, pull gently into shape after wash. Merino wool is sensitive to the detergents’ high pH level, and should not be washed too often, it’s much better to air it instead. Washing temperature for wool should not be any warmer than 30°C. See detailed washing instructions for wool further down in this article.

2FaceStretch (Softshell)

Avoid tumble drying. Drying cabinet however, is beneficial to use. The reason is that the heat re-activates the water repellant finish on your 2FaceStretch garment. If you don’t have a drying cabinet you can use an iron with low heat.

 

Wool

The magic trick to take care of your wool garment is to air, air and air. In other words, don’t wash it too often.

You can brush off dirt with a clothes brush and air your wool garment on a hanger outside. The wool repel dirt and breaks down bacteria, so it will clean itself and keep odeur away.

But of course, at some point you want to wash your wool garment, when you notice it no longer becomes clean and nice after being aired. Washing temperature for wool should not be any warmer than 30°C.

| How to Wash Your Wool Garment

Wool garments can be washed in the washing machine using mild laundry detergents and mild machine settings. You should also follow the washing and drying instructions on the label of your garment.

• Use a gentle laundry detergent. You may like to use a mesh laundry bag to protect the wool from the drum.
• Set the washing machine to the hand wash cycle or wool cycle. Temperature: no warmer than 30°C.
• To dry, lay flat on a dry towel or a clothes rack. Do not tumble dry.

Shell Garments

If you are misfortunate when out on adventure and get a rip or hole in a shell garment, a repair with tape or a specific repair kit can be carried out. The important thing is to make sure the fabric around the hole, is properly cleaned and that you wipe it off with a drop of spirit (not aceton or petrol, it destroys the garment), to make sure the repair patch will stick properly. Also, the repair patch should be at least 2 cm larger than the hole and it’s a great advantage if you round off the corners of the patch to decrease the risk of the corners to come off and rip the patch off.

Dry your shell garment in a drying cabinet or tumble dryer, since the heat re-activates the water repellant treatment. If you don’t have a drying cabinet or tumble dryer, an iron on low heat can be used.

It’s important to remember to reimpregnate your shell garment to sustain its properties and to increase its length of life. This can be done either in a washing machine or with a spray. Follow the instructions on the impregnation package carefully and make sure it’s meant for garments with breathability. Important for all types of impregnation is that it is exposed to heat after being applied, to maximize the effect. Be careful to only reimpregnate clean and washed garments since the impregnation otherwise with capture the dirt.

Specific care instructions from Gore-Tex® is available further down in this article.

| Shell Garments with Fluorocarbon Free DWR

More and more garments are treated with a fluorocarbon free DWR, please see the product description here on the website to find out what’s applicable for your shell garment. These garments need to be impregnated a bit more often. But it’s worth it in regards to the environment.

Fluorocarbons are often used as impregnation on textiles to repel water and dirt. Impregnation changes the surface tension of the garment so that water forms droplets and runs off. The disadvantage is that these chemicals also have other, less desirable, properties, for example they are broken down very slowly in the environment.

Garments with fluorocarbon free DWR (PFC Free DWR) need to be reimpregnated with a fluorocarbon free impregnation after about every second wash. The fact that the impregnation needs to be renewed more often is an alright compromise for that we don’t use fluorocarbons in the garment.

Flourocarbon free impregnation gives a good protection against water since it makes the surface hydrophobic and so the water pearls and runs off the fabric. If you experience that the water does not pearl and run off the surface, it is time to reimpregnate the garment. Fluorocarbon free impregnations lack the properties to resist dirt in the form of grease, oils and ketchup.

We recommend you to use a spray-on impregnation, not the type you pour in to the washing machine. With the spray you will need less impregnation, no unnecessary chemicals are washed out with the waste water and you can spray some extra on specifically exposed surfaces, such as shoulders and seat.

To a certain extent you can also re-activate the impregnation with heat. Dry your shell garment in a drying cabinet or tumble dryer. An iron on low heat can also be used.

Gore-Tex®

Many of our shell garments are made of Gore-Tex®. The following care instructions are taken from Gore’s website. Please visit them for further information on gore-tex.com. Also always read the care label of you particular garment. The general tips on top of this page is also applicable on shell garment; wash it and keep it clean, bot not too often. Tumble drying is beneficial, it helps to re-activate the water repellent treatment (DWR).

| Wash Your Gore-Tex® Garment

Machine-wash warm (104° F/40° C).
Powder or liquid detergent.
No fabric softener.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions.

| Dry Clean

If professionally dry-cleaned, request clear distilled solvent rinse and spray repellent. Follow manufacturer’s instructions.

| Iron

Steam-iron warm, placing a towel or cloth between the garment and the iron. No need to iron the garment until it is completely dry.

| Bleach

No chlorine bleach. It may damage your garment.

| Dry

Dry in a drying cabinet or tumble dryer. An iron on low heat can also be used. The heat will help to re-activate the durable water repellent (DWR) treatment on your garment’s outer fabric.

| Water Repellent Treatment

Gore recommends applying a topical water repellency restorative (DWR treatment) for outdoor fabrics, available at your local outdoor retailer. We do not recommend wash-in treatments as they can affect the garment’s breathability.

| Stain Removal

Use a pre-wash treatment such as Shout® or Spray ‘n Wash®, following its manufacturer’s instructions. Rinse well.

Down

Down can be washed, and clean down is always warmer than dirty down. In other words, it’s a good idea to wash your jacket at regular intervals – about once a year is fine for a jacket you wear a lot. For many of our down garments we recommend using a professional laundry service for water-based washing. You should also follow the washing and drying instructions on the label of your garment!

| General Tips for Washing Your Down Garments at Home

Your washing machine must be large enough for your garment to move around. Select a washing programme for delicates; 30°C or 40°C is a suitable temperature. Do up all zips and turn the jacket inside out.

Use a gentle detergent, preferably one of the specialist down detergents available from well-stocked outdoor retailers. The detergent must not contain bleach, and you must not add fabric conditioner to the washing machine.

Make sure that the jacket is rinsed properly, three to four times with a lot of water. Then use the fast spin setting so that it will be as dry as possible.

Put the spun-dry jacket into a tumble dryer with two or three tennis balls. The tumble dryer must also be large enough for the jacket to have plenty of room to tumble around. The balls help to distribute the down evenly and to ensure that it fluffs out again. Dry the jacket at a low temperature for as long as possible. You can help the down to spread through the down channels by removing the jacket from the tumble dryer every so often, shaking it in all directions and “breaking up” any clumps.

Drying takes longer than you might think. Many tumble dryers are equipped with automatic moisture detection, which can be “tricked” by the dryness of the garment’s outer fabric. That is why you may need to restart the tumble dryer several times. Make sure that the jacket is completely dry, light and fluffy before stopping the drying process. Then hang your down garment to air on a coat hanger.

| More work without a tumble dryer

It is possible to dry your jacket without a tumble dryer, but it is a lot more work. You will need a warm, well-ventilated room and you will need to give the jacket frequent and thorough shakes at regular intervals to prevent the down from forming clumps. If you have access to a hot-air fan, e.g. in a communal laundry room, this will be very helpful. Sun and wind will also reduce the drying time if the weather permits you to dry your garment outside. (But even when making use of the wind or electric fans you have to shake the jacket – there’s no escape!)

| More tips for taking care of your down garment

• When you are not wearing it, keep your jacket on a coat hanger in a dry, airy place.
• If it gets wet, make sure that it dries out properly before you hang it up and put it away.
• If you are forced to put a wet down jacket into a backpack, make sure that you hang it up somewhere airy and let it dry out properly as soon as possible.
• If the outer fabric gets dirty, it is sometimes sufficient to use a damp cloth to wipe it down. Or brush off loose dirt using a clothes brush!