Can you wash sequins? Are you confused about how to best care for your sparkly clothes? 

Follow these fail-safe ways to wash your sparkly or embelished clothes at home and avoid shrinking, faded sequins or loose beads 

Whether it’s festive season or festival season, the UK loves to dress up. In 2019 we spent an average of £73 per person on new outfits for parties at Christmas, and 1 in 5 of us said we wouldn’t wear that outfit more than once!The more you wear your clothes, the better. Lots of energy and resource goes into making them and yet 13 million items of clothes are going to landfill every week **. Washing your clothes with care helps them last longer - and you won’t have waste that £73 by shrinking them on the first wash! 

1) Check the care label 

Always check the label of the item you’re washing. It’s important to follow the care symbols to avoid shrinkage or degrading of clothing. If you don’t have enough to put in the wash just yet, wait until you have enough to run a full load. It’s important that items like wool or silk are washed on a Wool setting as it’s more gentle for your clothes. 

2) Hand wash your items

This may feel like a faff but it really is the safest way to wash your clothes with sequins, beads or embellishments. Clean your bath or skin first. Then fill with lukewarm water and a dash of gentle detergent. Soak your clothes for minutes. Swish the garment around in the water and use your hands or a brush to remove any really dirty areas. Squeeze out the water from the garment and drain the sink or bath. Then refill with cold clean water and swish your garments again until it feels like all the soap is out of the item. Repeat if necessary. Squeeze out excess liquid and hang clothes to dry.  

3) Wash on a gentle, cold wash 

Faster and hotter cycles will degrade the quality of the fabric and can lead to fading, shrinking or sequins/glitter coming off in the wash (and potentially even ending up in our oceans). Set your machine to it’s eco setting or hand wash setting and turn the temperature down to 30 or below.  If you’re not used to washing on low temperatures, we promise it will get your clothes clean but won’t cause them any harm.  

4) Avoid fabric softener or bleach 

Both can fade or wrinkle sequins and glitter. 

5) Zip or button them up and turn them inside out 

This will help keep sequins intact and reduce the chances of them coming off in the wash. 

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6) Spot wash or use fabric freshener 

Sometimes our clothes really aren’t in need of a full clean, especially if only worn for a few hours. Spot wash stains or under the armpits with soap and water in the sink and hang to dry. If you’re going to use a fabric freshening spray, only spray the inside of the garment. That’s because sprays can fade the colour of fabrics or sequins.  

7) Treat stains first 

Don’t jump to putting stained clothes on a high heat wash which uses a lot of energy. Soda water is a great way to get out red wine stains and so is a bit of salt. Treat the strain individually and wash as normal 

8) Go to the dry cleaners 

If you’re feeling nervous about washing your clothes and don’t want to risk causing any damage, visit your local dry cleaners. The experts will know how to clean that silk shirt or get that stubborn stain out of your party outfit. They’ll also return your clothes in a sleeve that can help preserve clothes from moths. 

9) Air dry 

Avoid the tumble dryer and let them air dry instead. The fast spin of a tumble dryer can cause features like sequins to come loose and the high heat can also cause issues such as shrinking, fading and increased microfiber release. Hang them up to dry instead.  

10) Don’t iron your sequins 

You don’t want to know how bad it smells when sequins melt. If you really need to remove wrinkles, hang your clothes up in the bathroom with you when you have a shower or invest in a clothes steamer (they retail for around £15). The steam will remove any creases without the risk of melting zippers or sequins or causing fabric burns.  

*Guardian
**Oxfam

It's a weird but wonderful life

Yes, things might look a little different this year but #YouGotThis, and we've got plenty of alternative ways to keep the magic alive this season. We’ll help you save money, have fun and come together (even if we can’t be physically together). There has never been a better opportunity to try something different than this year. Check out our tips, recipes and activities below, embrace the possibilities to try something new this festive period.

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