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When to Wash Your Clothes

September 19th, 2011 Bed and Bath

Not everything in your wardrobe needs to be washed every day - in fact, some items last longer if you wash them less frequently. Here's a guide for when to wash certain items and why you need to.

1. Underwear and socks. Wash these every day, as they're exposed to a lot of bacteria and are close-fitting. You might be able to get away without washing your socks after one use if you just wear them around the house for a few hours.

2. Bras. You don't have to wash these after every wear - in fact, most manufacturers tell you not to because too much laundering can damage the elastic and ruin the form. It's okay to wear a bra three or four times before you toss it in the hamper, unless you know you sweat a lot during the day. Start a rotation system, as it's best to give each bra's elastic a break after a whole day's wear. Also, don't put your bra in the dryer. It will keep its shape much longer if it air dries.

3. Jeans. You can wear these four or five times before washing them because they're durable and mask dirt. If they start to stretch out, you may want to toss them in the wash or even in the dryer for 10 minutes to shrink them back down a bit.

4. Office clothes. You can wear these multiple times as long as you change out of them when you get back home. Be sure to wash suit separates together to avoid having one fade faster than the other.

5. Blazers. Since these go on top of your outfits, they don't come in contact with any of your body's oils or bacteria so you can wear them up to six times before washing. They can retain smells though, so it's best to let them air out or spray them with fabric freshener before rewearing them.