How to Make Your Clothes Last

In my 20s, fast fashion was my thing. I didn’t need my clothes to last longer than the season I wore them, or even past a few washes. Eventually, I realized how much I was spending on “disposable” clothing and realized that I could have purchased a classic leather jacket instead of the 4 pleather ones I was picking up. I could buy a pair of jeans that transitioned seasons and years instead of losing shape and wearing out in weeks. Here are a few tips I picked up through the years on how to make your clothes last.

Cleaner Detergent

Anyone out there just purchase whatever laundry detergent is on sale? Or whatever label you recognize from the commercial you missed fast forward through on your DVR? I used to use a particular brand of detergent and noticed some gunky blue buildup on a few pieces of clothing. The detergent wouldn’t wash completely away and left the clothes slightly sticky, which attracted dirt like a magnet. Ummm….that defeats the purpose.

I then tried Cleancult, and immediately noticed a difference. My clothes were actually cleaner, stains came out easier, and the detergent rinsed clean instead of hangin’ around and needing an extra rinse cycle. Cleancult is a green, non-toxic laundry detergent that comes in pod form and is available via monthly subscription. There aren’t any fragrances, dyes, surfectants, chlorines, phosophates…you get the idea.

Here’s the deal- if your detergent is full of harsh chemicals, it is going to be harsh on your clothing. Fabric fibers can only withstand so much, so use a more mild, natural detergent like Cleancult to make them last as long as possible. Want to give it a try? Use code Cheryl17 for 60% off your first order of Cleancult.

*On a related note, our pediatrician told me to switch to a “free and clear” detergent for my daughter (her skin looked like a lizard at her last check-up…#MOMFAIL). Cleancult did not irritate her super sensitive skin like others I have tried. 

Lingerie Bags

Have you ever washed your bras, then tried to untangle them from the massive nest of wet clothing? Yeah, that’s not so great for your “delicates.” I received a lingerie bag in a swag bag a few years ago, and I don’t know how it wasn’t part of my life previously. I put EVERYthing in there- from an item with embellishments to anything with zippers to yes, my delicates. This sucker has preserved so many items that would come out mangled, misshapen or LOST! You can even toss socks in there to keep them in pairs.

Drying Racks

The dryer is my nemesis. If I had enough space to air dry every piece of clothing I own, I would….but then I couldn’t blame any errant weight gain on the aforementioned dryer. I use a drying rack for anything that I wear on a regular basis (excluding socks and underwear). All that lint that piles up in your dryer? Yeah, that is comprised of the fibers of your clothing, slowly shedding and thinning the material. If your clothing is crunchy after line/air drying, you can pop it in the dryer for a few minutes to soften it up. I have had this poppy dress for years, and the color has stayed bright because I kept it out of the dryer.

Steam vs. Iron

I am not a pro when it comes to ironing. I usually crank up the heat way too high and melt my attire. Ugh. I invested in a mini steamer and now NEVER ruin a polyester piece. If the wrinkles just won’t come out with a steamer and you do need to iron a garment (cotton, linen), turn it inside out before pressing to avoid any mishaps. Let the garment cool for at least 5 minutes before putting on or else new wrinkles can form. Also, if your dryer has a wrinkle release setting, USE IT! I hadn’t ever tried this before but had a tablecloth full of wrinkles that I needed for a TV segment. I filled the reservoir with water, popped it into the dryer on the steam setting, and less than 10 minutes later it emerged immaculate.

Deal with Deodorant

A few items in my closet, particularly white t-shirts, have been ruined thanks to deodorant. I recently switched to a natural deodorant free of aluminum and noticed that my white t-shirts don’t get yellow under the arms anymore. Aluminum + sweat = stains. Also, I have learned not to overapply deodorant- this can cause transfer of oils that will stain clothing. My favorite natural deodorant is Schmidt’s Naturals Charcoal + Magnesium. If you use traditional deodorant/antiperspirant and do happen to get a white mark on your clothing, use a Magic Eraser to remove.

What pieces have you invested in lately? Any tips or tricks you want to share?

Disclosure: I received Cleancult for review purposes but all opinions are honest and my own as always!