Quality workout clothes should always help you perform your best. But how do you keep your activewear in tip-top shape? Here are eight easy ways to lengthen the life of your gear, keep colors bright, and fabric fresh.
- AVOID THE DRYER
To help your activewear retain its stretch longer, don’t throw it in a hot dryer. Excess heat not only weakens fabric over time, but it can also bake in gym stink. Try drying on low heat or, to make your leggings last even longer, hang them to dry on a drying rack. If the weather is warm and sunny, consider hanging them outside. Just be sure to turn them inside out. Sunshine kills bacteria, but it can also fade colors!
- USE QUALITY DETERGENT
Detergent makes a difference! Look for detergents made especially for activewear. Our favorites are Tide Plus Febreze Odor Defense, HEX Advanced Laundry Detergent Free + Clear, and Persil ProClean Power Liquid 2-in-1. Also, be sure to use the recommended amount. More detergent isn’t always better. In fact, using too much can leave a residue that actually attracts grime.
- DITCH THE FABRIC SOFTENER
Fabric softeners can also leave a residue on your gear. These products work by coating fibers with chemicals that make clothes feel soft, but also prevent fabrics from performing the way they’re supposed to. To maintain your gear’s stretchiness and sweat-wicking abilities (and to keep chemicals off your skin while you’re working out) skip the fabric softener.
- BOOST YOUR WASH
If you want to keep your gear fresh, stretchy, and soft, head for your kitchen cabinet. Adding ½ cup of vinegar or baking soda to the wash helps eliminate stains and odors while boosting the power of your detergent. Vinegar cuts through invisible stains from sweat, dead skin cells, deodorant, sebum, and even excess detergent that can build up on activewear and prevent it from wicking sweat. Baking soda absorbs odors and softens your water, boosting your detergent’s cleaning power.
- GET IT OUT OF YOUR GYM BAG
The dark, damp space of your gym bag is an ideal breeding ground for stinky bacteria. Yuck! Instead of leaving sweaty clothes in your bag, either wash them immediately or hang them on a hook by the washing machine to let them dry.
- KEEP IT COOL
Washing your gear in cold water will help maintain the fabric’s stretch and keep colors vibrant. If you notice your workout wear is getting a bit smelly, try a 20-minute cool water pre-soak immediately after your workout or a warmer wash with cold rinse. Plus, washing in cold water is eco-friendly!
- WASH INSIDE OUT
Sweat and other stains builds up on the inside of your activewear. Turning your gear inside out before washing targets the dirtiest spots.
- USE A LAUNDRY BAG
Most of us hand wash or use laundry bags for our regular bras. Do the same for your sports bras! You can also remove cups from bras if possible to get them cleaner and help them retain their shape longer.
Following these easy care steps will help keep your activewear performing at its best so you can, too.