How to Wash Delicates

Caring for and cleaning your delicate fabrics

Delicate garments include: rayon, linen, wool or silk tops, shirts and blouses; lingerie, pantyhose and swimwear made of polyamide, polyester and Lycra.


It's important to wash delicate clothing separately from your other laundry. Since delicates are usually made of sheer or less durable fabrics, washing them separately helps avoid damage that can be caused by heavier fabrics and embellishments like zippers, buttons, etc.

Once you have the delicates separated, sort them carefully into light or dark colors. White delicate laundry should be washed separately from colors.


If washing in a machine, select an easy-care or delicates washing cycle. In the case of wool or silk, select the silk or hand wash cycle. (Follow the care instructions on your fabrics and clothing for best results.)

When hand washing:
Soak the garment(s) in the detergent solution and rinse thoroughly. Avoid rubbing and scrubbing. Do not leave damp garments in a pile. Do not wring out the garments, just squeeze lightly.

Detergent options:

Wash temperature:

  • Warm or cold


Check the care instructions on your fabrics. Many delicate fabrics cannot be dried in a clothes dryer. Those that can often need to be dried without heat. Others must be hang dried.

If possible, leave wool garments to dry flat.