The care necessities

At The Style Space we believe in taking care to curate a collection that includes your next favourite wardrobe piece. And when you take care of your favourite garments—not only will you be able to wear them again and again, you’ll be doing the environment a favour by breaking the fast-fashion cycle.

The best place to start is always checking the label for specific wash instructions. Different materials need different approaches. But there are a few other things to keep in mind that will help you care for different fabric types, and keep the process eco-friendly.

Green cleaning tips

We all want to do our bit for the environment. Here are some simple ways we can our make our garment care greener.

CUT DOWN ON DRY CLEANING

Have you ever avoided buying a great piece of clothing because it’s dry clean only? You’re not the only one. It can be a hassle. It’s not great for the environment. And the chemicals can be harsh on fabric and even our skin.

But we’ll let you in on a secret: unless the garment has details that can become damaged in a machine, most delicate items that are labelled ‘dry clean only’ can be washed. Simply use a gentle, low-temperature cycle or wash by hand.

And if you really do have to dry clean your garment, consider using environmentally friendly services that have non-toxic ways to get your outfit back to its best.

WASHING LESS IS BEST

Before you put your outfit in the washing basket, ask yourself if it really needs it. There’s good reason to avoid washing your clothes, and not only because it saves you time and effort. By not washing when you don’t need to, you save water and detergent, avoid dry-cleaning, and your clothes will even last longer by preserving their fibres.

Try hanging your garment outside, or up in the bathroom while you have a steamy shower—it does a great job at refreshing the fabric. Or for those small spots, use a stain remover.

KEEP IT ON LOW

When you do need to wash, keep it at a low temperature. 30 degrees or less is effective for most garment types and will cut your environmental impact significantly—it’s estimated that 80-90% of laundry carbon emissions come from heating water and tumble drying. So dial it down next time you take the washer for a spin.

Exceptions might be items that come into close contact with your skin. So remember underwear, bedding and towels might still need a higher temperature wash.

WHAT ARE YOU WASHING WITH?

Did you know many standard detergents on the market are made from fossil fuel-based substances? That means they don’t biodegrade and will go back into the water system.

But thankfully these days there are a lot more specialist, eco-friendly options out there derived from plants. You can also look for refillable options that help cut down on packaging waste.

TURN IT INSIDE OUT

One really easy way to help prolong the fibres in your fabric is to wash them inside out. It might sound strange, but it helps stop friction to the outside layer of your clothing. Avoiding overfilling the machine will also cut down on fabric damage.

HANG ME OUT TO DRY

We all know that fresh smell of clothes that have just come off the line, and we can’t get enough of it. But there’s even more to love about air-drying your clothes. You skip using all that electricity from tumble drying—better for the environment and your wallet—and air-drying protects certain fibres from damage.

Simply give your clothes a shake before hanging them out to dry on a washing line, drying rack, or straight on their hangers. And remember, there are some things like woollens that are better dried flat, so remember to check your clothing labels.

Fabric care

Got a certain fabric you’d like to know some care tips for? We’ve got you covered.

HAND WASH, AIR DRY

Acetate is a material with a lot going for it. It’s often blended with other fibres to create easy-to-drape, flowing fabric. However, it’s a little sensitive and the fibres can get damaged by twisting or wringing. High temperature washes can also cause some damage, and dye transfer which you probably want to avoid.

To keep your acetate fabrics looking beautiful, wash it by hand or keep the machine on a gentle cold-wash cycle. Hang it up to dry. And iron inside-out on a low heat.

COOL WATER WASH, AIR DRY

Made from the flax plant, linen is as naturals it gets. Check if your garment needs to be dry cleaned, but if it can go through the wash follow instructions and remember to use water that’s right for the colour. Linens also tends to absorb more water during the washing process, so try not to overcrowd in the washer or dryer. Iron inside-out on a hot setting to get any wrinkles out.

COOL WATER WASH, TUMBLE DRY OR AIR DRY

We love polyester because it’s a fun, versatile fabric that has endless options for colour.

Most polyester pieces simply need a cool to warm machine wash setting but remember to check the labels first. They’ll also withstand a tumble dry—and if you get them from the dryer while they’re still a bit damp you’ll also prevent wrinkles and that static effect.

Lastly, if it does need an iron, it’s important to use a low heat—remember polyester can melt.

HAND WASH OR COOL WARM WASH, TUMBLE DRY COOL OR AIR DRY

Silk is a strong and natural fibre. But it needs a little extra care to keep it feeling luxurious.

Check the label—some weave patterns used for silk fabric will tighten or pucker when washed so they might be dry clean only.

If you can wash it, use products specifically for delicate fabrics. You can even use mild baby shampoo, as long as it doesn’t contain any added waxes or oils. And importantly, silk can’t be tumble dried. Instead, roll up your garment in a towel to press out any excess water and then hang it out to dry. If it needs an iron, use a warm setting.

HAND WASH, AIR DRY

We all love a little flexibility, and stretchy spandex gives it to us in spades. It can be washed by hand or machine, just remember to steer clear of hot water or chlorine bleach. And unless the label says it’s ok, hang your spandex items out to dry—the tumble dryer can cause some blends to pucker or bubble.

And lastly, a quick press with a warm iron will cut out any creases in your fabric.

HAND WASH, AIR DRY

Tailored tweed, soft challis, and luxury cashmere. Water repellent, warm and naturally insulating; wool is a wonder.

In its natural state, you can hand wash wool with a gentle detergent, and even put it through a machine wash if the care label allows. But the way many wool garments are constructed mean they need to be dry cleaned to protect the fabric.

And we know to avoid very hot water when it comes to wool, but cold water can also cause your garment to shrink, so washing at a lukewarm temperature is best. Many wools will also appreciate being laid flat to air dry, they get heavy when wet and can stretch on the line.