Forever Purchases: How To Extend The Life Span Of Your Clothes - The Gloss Magazine
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how to take care of your clothes

Forever Purchases: How To Extend The Life Span Of Your Clothes

Your favourite wardrobe pieces? You want them to last forever, of course. Here’s how to take care of your clothes …

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The best way to take care of your clothes? It starts with washing them properly and at the correct times and temperatures. Firstly, the overall consensus with denim is to wash it as little as possible for longevity. Experts suggest it’s best to wash after every five to ten wears, and to spot clean in between washes. One fashion expert tells me she always washes her jeans on cold as a precaution, even if the label states otherwise, plus she uses a specialist detergent. (Try Steamery for a denim-specific detergent that prevents dark colours from looking washed out, €17.)

As for synthetics, extend their lifestyle by washing them on a colder temperature such as 30 degrees, plus skip the spin cycle and the tumble dryer. Not only will skipping the tumble dryer lessen risk of shrinkage, avoiding the spin cycle means less micro-plastics are released upon washing. Nifty tools such as a Guppyfriend, a mesh bag that collects broken fibres from synthetic textiles, preventing them from being released into oceans and rivers, are invaluable, €29.75 at

Meanwhile, generally silk is dry clean only. If it is machine washable, wash the item by hand, or in a mesh washing bag on a cold cycle, and avoid tumble drying. Equally, for harder to clean items such as canvas trainers, the key is to spot-clean them using a soft toothbrush and a small amount of washing up liquid. For a full garment guide, look to retailers such as Arket: it offers a care guide for every kind of fabric, with the aim of extending the life-span of each of your purchases. If you’re in doubt as to whether something needs a wash, revive it with a steamer and a spritz of fabric freshener: it works wonders!

Equally, buying pieces with longevity in mind is key: something we all know when thinking about being sustainably-minded. While some excel at re-wearing – or, to ditch the fashion speak, just wearing – their clothes often, even as much as we are all conscious, it can be hard to shake the old school notion that wearing an item on repeat is a fashion faux pas. Our advice? Seek out style influencers who embrace repeat wearing for inspiration. Look to British fashion editor Alexandra Stedman, below, or Anna Newton (Instagram @theannaedit) who often create multiple outfits around one key piece. The more examples you see of just how flexible your clothes can be, the more your mindset will shift when it comes to your own pieces.

Lastly, if something breaks, there’s always repair too. Zara offers a repair service for minor repairs such as buttons, small holes or tears and seam replacement, as well as depilling services for the advent knitwear aficionados, with prices starting from €3. You can also get the hem on your trousers altered for €9: perfect as the season’s lengths continue to puddle around the floor. You can request a repair in store or online, the usual wait time is 14 days for repair services.

And a final word: be sure to befriend your local tailor, they’ll be on hand for everything from tweaking the fit of jackets and trousers to completely reworking an item that doesn’t get as much wear as you’d like it to. It’s all about the long game…


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