Capsule wardrobe rules
The most important thing about washing clothes is to do it sparingly—in fact, some experts recommend that you only wash your clothes once every six months.
This may sound like an impossible feat (or a terrible idea), but it’s not as hard as it sounds!
How to Wash Clothes
- Wash clothes by hand. Hand washing is not only kinder to the environment, it’s also gentler on your clothes than a machine. Plus, you can be sure that every piece of clothing is clean and stain-free.
- Hang dry as much as possible. Hot air drying too fast can damage the fibers in your clothes (not to mention shrink them). That’s why it’s best to hang dry most items in your capsule wardrobe—but don’t worry if you have no other choice but to use the dryer! Just make sure that you don’t overdo it: If possible, keep the temperature low and do an extra rinse cycle for each load.
- Don’t use fabric softeners! They coat fabrics with chemicals that prevent them from breathing properly, which means they’ll feel stiffer when worn again (and who wants that?). If smelling like Bounce dryer sheets isn’t your thing anyway…
Never wash clothes with towels?
But when you think about it, there’s a good reason why towels never get put in the washing machine. They’re made of cotton and all cotton is “natural” – which might sound great but it can be misleading. A lot of natural fibers—like cotton—are actually really bad for the environment and for your health. Cotton grows using a lot of pesticides that pollute waterways and harm wildlife (like bees) because they’re sprayed on crops and don’t dissipate quickly enough before water is used again by humans or animals after being used once by us to do laundry! This is why many environmentalists recommend buying organic cotton clothing items if nothing else!
Wash clothes by hand
Hand washing is a great way to get a load of laundry done. It saves time, energy and money, and makes it easy to keep your clothes looking clean and fresh.
READ NEXT: How To Build Capsule Wardrobe For Work
Before you wash your clothes by hand, check the care label attached to each garment. Some items of clothing can be machine-washed on cold water settings while others require hand washing only. If you have doubt about whether an item will survive the process or not, give it a test run before throwing it into the laundry basket!
When washing by hand:
- Use cold water—you don’t want hot or warm water ruining any delicate fabrics or colors!
- Fill up your sink with enough cold water for all of your dirty garments (this may vary greatly depending on how many loads) and add detergent according to package directions (usually 2-3 tablespoons per load).
- Add one scoop of baking soda mixed with two scoops vinegar—this helps remove stains from natural fibers like cotton or wool without damaging them like bleach would do! Let this mixture sit for at least 30 minutes before adding anything else so that no residual soap remains on any fabrics when rinsing them out later…
Hang-dry clothes as much as possible.
Hang-dry clothes as much as possible.
You should not only hang-dry your clothes when the weather permits, but also enjoy the smell of fresh laundry in the sunshine or wind. When you do this, you’ll notice that your clothes will last longer and save money on fabric softeners (which are bad for the environment). The great thing about hang drying is that it costs nothing to do (other than electricity for an electric dryer), so there’s no reason not to try it out!
Read next: How To Create A Minimalist Capsule Wardrobe
Don’t use fabric softeners
Fabric softeners are a big no-no for capsule wardrobes. They make your clothes feel softer, but they also make them less absorbent and can leave a residue on your clothes that attracts dirt and causes them to wear out faster. Additionally, they can actually make your clothes smell bad if you use too much.
So what do fabric softeners do? The main ingredient in most modern fabric softeners is silicone, which coats the surface of the fibers in your clothes giving them the super-smooth feeling we all love so much. This coating also makes it harder for water to fully penetrate into your fabrics—and when water doesn’t penetrate as well as it should be able to…well…you see where I’m going here! Fabric softeners cause increased drying time due to this lack of penetration and also reduce absorption rate during washing (which means more frequent washing cycles). And finally don’t forget about those nasty chemicals! They may help keep things smelling fresh between washes but at what cost? Most modern detergents contain some form of bleaching agent which will cause yellowing over time if used regularly enough—not exactly something anyone wants happening with their freshly washed whites!
Do an extra rinse cycle.
You’ll want to wash your clothes twice or more, to get rid of detergent residue. Your washer may have different settings for rinsing and spinning (wash, rinse, spin) or it might just have settings for the whole cycle. Use hot water for the first rinse and cold water for the next one.
Fold your clothes correctly.
Folding clothes is a crucial part of the capsule wardrobe process. It’s all about space-saving and making it easy to grab what you need when you’re in a rush (or on vacation). So, let’s get folding!
- T-shirts: Roll sleeves up and fold in half. This works for both V-neck and crew neck shirts. If you have more than one shirt of the same color, label them so that they stand out from each other in the drawer or closet.
- Shirts: Fold in thirds lengthwise and then crosswise, like a letter (think “letter” as in “L” not as in “mail”). You can also try rolling them up into cylinders with pleats at both ends if this feels more comfortable to you.
- Pants: Fold legs inward toward center seam and roll closed until it reaches waistband—then fold once again vertically along center seam (or horizontally if there isn’t one) before placing pants neatly over hangers or hanging them on hooks with pants facing outward (not inward). Do not hang by waistbands!
Don’t hang sweaters by their shoulders.
You might think that hanging a sweater in the closet by its shoulders is the right way to do it, but this method can cause pilling and stretching. Instead, hang sweaters by their cuffs or neck. For example:
- Cuff-hanging: Fold the cuff over once so that it’s straight across, then slip your hand through. Hook it on a hanger with one arm of your shirt on top of another arm (like you’re laying down an American flag). Repeat until you’re out of hangers or sweaters!
- Neck-hanging: Fold the collar up and over itself until it’s slightly folded over in a circle shape—this will allow for easy access later on! Slip both arms through and hang clothes like normal!
Dry clean some items sparingly.
- Dry cleaning is expensive.
- Dry cleaning can be damaging to fabrics.
- Dry cleaning is harmful to the environment.
- Not all clothes need to be dry-cleaned, especially if you’re washing them less frequently and more often in cold water (in which case they won’t need to be washed at all).
- If you’re going to spend money on dry-cleaning, make sure it’s worth it: only have items cleaned if they are actually dirty or stained, not just for convenience sake or because laundromats are convenient but full of germs or other people’s fuzzies!
Washing clothing can damage the fabric and the environment, so it is best to do it sparingly and carefully.
Washing clothing can damage the fabric and the environment, so it is best to do it sparingly and carefully. Here are some guidelines for washing your capsule wardrobe:
- If you want to make sure that your clothes stay in good shape, do not wash them more than once a month.
- Wash only full loads of laundry—this will save time and money on electricity costs.
- Remember that the laundry detergent you use has an impact on our planet’s health as well as yours. Make sure you choose one that’s eco-friendly!
How do you clean a capsule wardrobe?
The best way to wash clothes capsule wardrobe is to hand wash them. However, if you’re on the road and need to launder your garments in a pinch, there are other methods that can be used.
In general, washing machines are not the best way to clean your clothes capsule wardrobe because they may stretch or shrink them out of shape. You should also avoid dryers at all costs as they can ruin delicate fabrics such as silk and wool.
When traveling with a miniature collection of clothing items, it’s important that you know what types of fabric each item is made out of so that you know how these materials will react when washed in different ways:
- Wool: This material can be very delicate; therefore it needs special care when being cleaned by hand or machine-washed (always read the care tag). Wool can shrink a lot when washed so make sure you buy garments made from this material larger than what size would fit comfortably on your body after shrinking takes place!
- Silk: Silk is another delicate fabric which requires special care when being cleaned by hand or machine-washed (again always read the care tag). To minimize any damage caused by washing silk items turn them inside out before placing them in water bath filled with cool water mixed with mild detergent solution – gently rub both sides until clean then rinse under running water until no soap residue remains before hanging outside away from direct sunlight exposure until completely dry
How often should I wash my capsule wardrobe?
You should wash your capsule wardrobe when:
- It smells. If you can smell a shirt or pair of pants, that means it’s absorbing sweat and other body odors and needs to be washed. The same goes for socks, which tend to get wet in shoes and need frequent washing as well.
- It is dirty. Clothing can become soiled from everyday wear and tear (e.g., food spills), or from more serious accidents like spilled coffee or ink stains from pens that were left uncapped on the desk at work (yikes). As with smelling clothes, if there’s visible dirt on an article of clothing after just one use—whether it’s food stains or impenetrable stains caused by an accident—then it’s time to wash those pieces right away before they get worse!
- It is too small/big/out-of-style/worn out/too new. A good rule of thumb here is this: If a piece doesn’t fit properly anymore because it has shrunk due to being washed incorrectly or has stretched out over time without being worn much (i.e., not enough movement), then toss out those items immediately so they don’t take up space in your closet! Also remember that if something doesn’t fit anymore but still looks good enough on its own merit (i.e., no holes), then consider selling them instead rather than just throwing them out altogether; we’ve found this saves us money because we sometimes end up getting more cash back than what we paid originally for these pieces–and let me tell ya: That feels pretty good after spending all those $$ upfront buying fancy clothing off Ebay…
How often do minimalists do laundry?
If you’re going to be wearing your wardrobe items frequently, it’s a good idea to wash them weekly or every other week. This will help them stay clean, fresh and ready-to-wear all the time. You’ll have more flexibility in your life when you can wear an outfit that’s already clean and ready for use at any moment.
If you don’t wear your clothes that often, it might make sense for you to only wash them once a month (or even less frequently). This will allow for longer periods between washes without having any impact on the quality of what’s hanging in your closet!
How do you wash your clothes when you travel?
If you’re traveling with a capsule wardrobe, then you’ll want to know how to wash your clothes while traveling.
Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get the job done:
- If you’re traveling abroad and don’t have access to a washing machine or dryer, consider using a laundry drop off service. Many hostels offer this service as part of their amenities. You can also find them at many hotels throughout Europe and Asia (but not in the US).
- Wash your clothes by hand in the sink if you have access to water, soap and space for soaking. This method is best used when camping or backpacking; if these conditions aren’t met just yet then stick with hanging out in dirty outfits until such time as they are (as we’ve discussed earlier).
- Use paper towels and launderables like coffee filters or kitchen sponges to absorb moisture from wet clothing before hanging it up by hand drying racks which are often provided in dorm rooms. Be sure not overdo this step though since doing so could lead to mildew stains!
We hope that this post has given you some ideas on how to wash your clothes in a sustainable way! Remember, washing your clothes is not the most important part of living a minimalist lifestyle. The goal here should always be to live with less overall as much as possible and use items for longer before replacing them with new ones (or donating them).