Washing sheets in the washing machine would seem to be a very simple action to perform: you open the drum, set the program, start the washing machine, and that's it. In reality, there are several pointers that it is good to keep in mind in order to have not only clean and fragrant sheets but also to preserve the quality of the fabric.
As a large household linen item, it is unthinkable to wash sheets by hand, an operation that, in addition to being tiring and impractical, would not guarantee the same standards of hygiene as washing sheets in a washing machine.
Whether it's a set of sheets or a parure or some pillowcases, bedding should be changed and washed regularly in order to ensure maximum disinfection and cleanliness. Sleeping among sheets that smell fresh and clean is, after all, a very pleasant feeling as well as good practice from a hygienic point of view.
Some introductory advice
We more or less all know the golden rule and it refers to seeing the symbols on the label with all the necessary information to avoid ruining the sheets during washing.
That said, here are some tricks and tips that apply to any type of sheet, regardless of the particularities of the fabric:
- Avoid overloading the washing machine. In fact, an exaggerated load does not allow the drum to spin as it should and allow water and detergent to penetrate the fabric of the sheets. In the long run, it can also impair the operation of the appliance;
- Separate whites from colors. Although there are color-catching sheets, it is always a good idea to separate laundry according to coloration to avoid unpleasantness. In addition, whites and colors have a different washing temperature: in fact, whites withstand higher temperatures. Washing white sheets in the washing machine at higher temperatures also allows for better sanitation since a higher temperature kills germs and bacteria more easily;
- Do not place rolled sheets in the washing machine but rather fold them on themselves in a fan-like fashion so that water and detergent penetrate every part of the fabric. The same goes for new sheets, which should always be washed before use anyway and never stuffed folded into the washing machine.
No-iron sheets: when you don't have time to iron
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At how many degrees should sheets be washed?
The washing temperature of bed sheets is a key issue and one of the most frequently asked questions, the answer to which depends on various factors including the type of fabric, its color and any treatments to which it has been subjected.
In general, cotton sheets can be washed at a temperature ranging from 30°/40° C to 60° C depending on whether they are colored or white. This also applies in the case of cotton percale, cotton flannel and/or cotton satin sheets.
For linen sheets, a fabric of natural origin like cotton, there is not much difference from washing cotton sheets. For white linen, 60° C can be reached while for colored linen the maximum recommended temperature is 40° C.
For washing silk sheets, on the other hand, since it is a particularly delicate fabric, it is recommended not to exceed 30° C in order to preserve its exceptional characteristics.
What can be washed with sheets?
The basic rule is to wash in a single load only linens that are similar to each other in terms of the required temperature and number of spin cycles, as well as the fabric specifications. It is therefore obviously inadvisable to wash fabrics with excessively different characteristics together.
Some people tend to wash sheets and towels together with the same detergent and fabric softener. In truth, the use of fabric softener is discouraged to prevent the towel from felting and losing its softness.
The best choice remains to wash the sheets alone along with their respective pillowcases at each bed change, without cramming the washing machine with other garments or clothes.
How to wash sheets with the spin cycle?
Another key step to have clean sheets and preserve the integrity and quality of the fabric, is to set the correct spin speed of the centrifuge. Again, it is important to follow the directions on the label.
For natural-fiber fabrics, such as linen and cotton, for example, it is recommended not to exceed 800 rpm and to set a washing program for delicates. This is to prevent the fabric from shrinking (usually on the first wash it is normal to have up to 3-5% shrinkage).
For silk sheets, on the other hand, it is recommended not to use the spin cycle, do a hand prewash and then wash in the washing machine with the delicates and cold program.
What detergent to use to wash bed sheets?
Bed sheets are in close contact with our skin. This is another reason why it is highly recommended to use natural detergents that do not attack the fabric and do not release residues that could irritate the skin.
Then, in the case of new sheets characterized by very colorful fabrics, for the first wash, vinegar can be used instead of fabric softener, which, in addition to being an excellent natural disinfectant, helps to keep the fabric soft.
Regardless of all the tricks you can take, the only thing that guarantees good durability is the basic quality of the product.
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