Caring For Your Bikinis: How to Wash Bikinis And Keep Them In Good Condition

We often go through much to get just the right bikinis. Unfortunately, all that effort could go to waste if we do not properly care for them. Chemicals from pool water and sunscreen, constant exposure to the sun, salt water, and minerals can do a number on your favorites. But if you learn how to wash bikinis properly and take good care of them, they can remain in pristine condition for a long time. Consider some essential care tips to prevent stretching and color fading and keep your luxury bikini tops and bottoms looking new for longer.

Caring For Your Bikinis How to Wash Bikinis And Keep Them In Good Condition

Rinse Well Before and Immediately After Use

One of the most crucial care steps is to rinse your bikini off before you take a dip and immediately after every use. Rinsing before getting into the pool is not simply a matter of personal hygiene; it also serves an important purpose. The pre-swim rinse saturates the fabric of your swimsuit with fresh water, therefore wicking less of the chlorine or salty water. This will protect the ability of the fabric to stretch and to bounce back.

Most beaches and swimming pools have a shower nearby where you rinse off your hair and skin after a dip. Rinsing your swimsuit here or elsewhere, immediately after getting out of the water will reduce the concentration of harsh chemicals and minerals with a view to preventing potential damage. When it sits for a long time with these chemicals, there is a high likelihood of color loss and loss of elasticity.

How to Wash by Hand

It is recommended to wash bikinis by hand because this allows for a gentle touch that will not stress the fabric. Here is how to go about it:

  • Add a small amount of liquid soap to a tub of cool water and swish it around. Use mild dish soap rather than detergent because the latter use bleaches and harsh chemicals.
  • Turn the bikini top and bottom inside out and soak it in the solution for up to 30 minutes. Washing it inside out will protect the exterior and give you easy access to areas that are soiled by sunscreen and sweat. Never soak it overnight because doing so can make the fibers loose and stretch them out.
  • After soaking it for the required time, swish the suit around in the solution, gently scrubbing off any stains, especially around the neck area and armpits.
  • Gently squeeze it and drain the soapy water, replacing it with clean water for rinsing. Avoid wringing it at all costs. Simply squeeze out the excess water as gently as you can.
  • Roll it up in a towel and squeeze out water, then lay it flat against another towel or across a drying rack to dry up. Avoid hanging it on a line as it tends to stretch and become misshapen. To speed up the process, you could switch on the fan. If you decide to dry it outdoors, keep it away from direct sunlight to minimize fading and potential damage to the fibers.

How to Wash in a Washing Machine

Some bikinis allow for machine washing. Once again, be as gentle as you can to avoid damaging the delicate fabric. Here are some additional considerations for the best results:

  • Use the “Gentles” or “Delicates” cycle, mild detergent, and cold water.
  • Pretreat stains by applying mild detergent to affected areas.
  • Wash it together with similar synthetic fabrics.
  • Turn it inside out prior to the wash and prevent the fabric from stretching and snagging by placing it inside a mesh bag. This will also help protect delicate bikini bottoms and tops that feature lace or dainty strings.
  • Do not tumble dry unless your dryer has the “air fluff” feature and make sure there is no heat. If your dryer does not feature air fluff, use the procedure outlined above to dry it.

How Often Should You Wash Bikinis?

It is important to wash them after every single use. The rule applies even if you have not stepped in the water. The delicate fabric can sustain damage simply from exposure to the chemicals in your sunscreen. It is worth noting that certain SPFs are potentially more damaging than others. Over time, repeated exposure to these can result in a breaking down of the fabric or even cause yellowing in some parts of it.

How to Tackle Stubborn Stains

Bikini fabric tends to hold on to oil-based stains and this could pose a seemingly insurmountable challenge. After pre-treating the stain with mild detergent, wash it in warm water. Scrub it out gently concentrating on the stained area. Do not place a stained piece into the dryer as this will cause the stain to set further and make it even more difficult to remove.

If you discover brown or yellow stains after a wash, this could have to do with a chemical reaction between hard water and sunscreen. Certain chemical sunscreens contain an ingredient known as avobenzone. When exposed to hard water, it sometimes reacts with iron to form rust, hence the brownish stains. The only way out of this is to avoid sunscreens with that chemical or steer clear of hard water.

Tips to Avoid Damaging Your Bikinis Between Washes

In addition to following the right procedure for washing, you also need to protect your suit against damage in between washes. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • After swimming and rinsing it, avoid storing it in a plastic bag for hours or days on end, awaiting a wash. This common practice not only encourages the growth of mold and mildew but also exposes the fabric to stress due to moisture. Moreover, if there is a funky odor, such conditions increase the likelihood of setting in.
  • The best way to fight odors is to wash it promptly, preferably using soap that is mildly scented. To get rid of persistent odors, it is alright to rinse it in a baking soda and water solution or in diluted vinegar. These are among the mildest substances you can use for this purpose.
  • Before storing, ensure that it has dried up completely to prevent the development of mildew or mold. The manner of storage also matters – avoid damp basements and hot attics by all means, opting for a cool and dry room. For the best care, place it in a clean garment bag.
  • Sitting on a rough surface in your bikini can cause fabric piling due to abrasion. Avoid sitting directly on such surfaces as sandy beaches or concrete poolsides. Though fabric shavers or scissors can remove piles, they will also make the fabric thin, and thus prone to further piling.

Taking these pointers into consideration will ensure a long life and great performance from your favorite bikini sets.

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