You’ve just spent a lot of money on your cashmere cardigan. It is beautiful and you’ve started to wear it a number of times. So, how do you care for cashmere? What is the best way to clean it to ensure that it will last a long time? Below are a few tips to help in your cashmere cardigan care.
Cashmere cardigans should be washed after every 6-7 times that you wear them. Do not wash it too often as this can cause damage to the cashmere fibers. Cashmere can be hand washed, machine washed or dry-cleaned although it really depends on the garment. Before deciding which process to use, check the garment label to make sure that you can do so. Sometimes, the garment will say hand wash only or dry clean only. Whichever way you choose, follow the steps below when doing so to ensure that you do not ruin your cardigan.
Machine washing cashmere
Button up the cardigan and then make sure you turn it inside out before putting it in the machine. Then, make sure that your liquid detergent is a delicate detergent or a special cashmere detergent suitable for cashmere. Usually, the label on the back or the front will indicate what material the detergent can be used with. Use the handwash or delicate cycle on your machine. See the next area for drying instructions.
Unless the label specifically states that you can put the cardigan in the dryer, do not dry the cardigan in a machine. Instead smooth it out and put it back into its original shape. Put it on a flat towel and let it dry naturally. Do not put it directly under the sun or use direct heat (like a blow dryer). Let it naturally dry. Also, do not hang the cardigan while it is still wet. Hanging it up will cause it to stretch out of shape. Dry it immediately so that it will retain its shape. Finally, when your cashmere cardigan is dry, you can press it lightly with a cool iron over a damp cloth if there are still any wrinkles.
Hand washing cashmere
This process can almost always be followed, especially if you just have a small stain. Hand washing also keeps the garment soft and helps it to retain its color. Be sure to wash your garment in lukewarm water. When hand washing, use the same type of special detergent that would be used in for the machine and only use one whose label indicates that it works for cashmere. Do not rub, twist or stretch the fabric, it is very delicate and this will stretch the threads and change the shape. Try to gently squeeze the cardigan and work the detergent gently through the fabric. Afterwards, carefully rinse it out in the lukewarm water. Sometimes, you may need to rinse it more than once to make sure the detergent has been completely removed. Afterwards, follow the instructions above to dry the garment.
Dry cleaning cashmere
If the label on the garment says that it is dry clean only, take it to a reputable dry cleaner. At the dry cleaners, let them know that the garment is cashmere and has to be handled delicately. Make sure the dry cleaner uses good cleaning products to dry clean the garment. Note that the better option sometimes is to hand wash the item since the chemicals from dry cleaning can cause damage to the fibers in the cashmere and make the sweater hard rather than soft.