How to Tell If Clothes Are Safe to Bleach
Bleaching clothes can be a great way to keep clothes looking new. Unfortunately, it can also damage certain fabrics. As a result, it’s important to understand which clothes it’s safe to bleach, and which should never be bleached.
Steps to Determine If a Fabric is Bleachable
- Check the Label – The first step is to always read the label. Clothing labels can list different types of additives that tell you whether or not they are safe to bleach. Look for phrases like “bleach safe” or “not safe to bleach”.
- Consider the Material Type – Non-synthetic materials are generally safe to bleach though all materials should be test first to see how they react to the bleach. For example, cotton, linen, nylon, and acetate fabrics are generally safe to bleach. However, highly delicate fabrics, such as rayon and silk, are typically not recommended.
- Check for Colors – Colors also must be taken into consideration. Some materials may suffer discoloration if bleached. Generally, whites, ivory, beiges, tans, and pastels are the ideal colors for bleach. Colored fabrics should not be bleached.
Suggestions for Safe Bleaching Techniques
- Use only the correct amount of bleach for the material – Too much bleach can cause material to discolor and deteriorate.
- Perform spot tests – Spot tests are great for figuring out the right amount of bleach required for the material. For example, first try swabbing a small bit of the material with bleach and rinsing it out.
- Do not mix with other cleaning products – Some products may have a reaction with the bleach which can have different outcomes.
- Do not keep the bleach on too long – Bleach doesn’t necessarily need to sit on the material for a long time to be effective, although it can depending on the material. Too long and the material may start to deteriorate.
Bleach can do wonders for clothing by renewing their color and keeping them looking new. However, if bleach is used on the wrong item it might cause discoloration or deterioration. Be sure to identify which fabrics are safe to bleach. Also, pay attention to the amount of time bleach is applied to the materials and never mix with other cleaning products.