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Special care for winter wear
 

In most areas, winter brings more rain, snow and extreme cold than any other season. And winter weather means fabrics such as wool, down, leather and cashmere. Here are some special care tips for best cleaning and care results.

Wool

Wool is a favorite winter fabric because of its superior warmth and durability. Before treating any wool garment, always first refer to the instructions on the care label. Then follow these basic suggestions:

  • Refresh by hanging in a steamy bathroom. Remember to empty pockets.
  • When pressing, use steam on slightly damp fabric; iron on reverse side or use a press cloth to avoid shine; lower and lift iron, don't slide.
  • Fold and store wool garments flat to prevent shape distortion.
  • Store with fresh cedar blocks.
  • For washable wool, rinse stains immediately with cool water and spot clean using Tide® Liquid or Ivory Snow® Liquid.
  • If hand-washing washable wool, follow these guidelines:

1.Use low temperatures, plenty of water.
2.Use a pH-neutral liquid detergent like Tide or Ivory Snow.
3.Wash inside-out; don't rub, wring or soak.     

For dry-clean-only wool fabrics, try Dryel®. Just zip it, steam it and hang it. In 30 minutes, you can care for your dry-clean-only and special-care garments for about 60 cents per garment.

Down

Whether it's a coat, comforter or pillow, down-filled items require special care. Before treating any down garment, always first refer to the instructions on the care label. Be consistent when cleaning — stick to dry cleaning or washing each time. If washing, follow these guidelines:

1.Choose regular cycle, normal spin.
    
2.Start washer and add Tide.
    
3.Submerge items when washer is half full.
    
4.Balance wash load by adding towels or washing two similarly colored and sized items at the same time.
    
5.Stop washer occasionally to press air from items being washed.
    
6.Tumble dry low. Add several dry bath towels and a clean pair of tennis shoes to the dryer to help tumbling action and fluff up down filling.

For dry cleaning:
Did you know that, when used as directed, Dryel is safe for pillows and other down-filled items?

Leather and suede

Garments made from these popular materials require extra care. Before treating any leather or suede garment, always first refer to the instructions on the care label. Then consider these general tips: 

  • Use a good conditioner to stop damaging moisture and stains and to maintain breathability.
  • Clean small leather stains with a leather cleaner and a damp cloth.
  • Lightly brush suede to remove stains and avoid nap damage.
  • For tough stains, consult a dry cleaner who specializes in leather/suede care.

Cashmere

Before treating any cashmere garment, always first refer to the instructions on the care label. If you own some of this luxurious fabric, also: 

  • Wash or dry clean after 6-7 wearings.
  • If dry clean only, use an experienced cleaner and instruct him to block your garment before drying.
  • Hand-wash knitted garments when possible.
  • If hand-washing, follow these guidelines:

1.Use lukewarm water.
    
2.Wash with Tide Liquid or Ivory Snow.
    
3.Squeeze suds gently through the garment.
    
4.Never rub or twist.
    
5.Rinse thoroughly, several times.
    
6.Dry naturally on flat towel — not in direct sunlight or heat.
    
7.Smooth out garment to original shape and size.

Everyday storage tips

Storing winter items isn't always the same as in other seasons: 

  • Allow all wearable items, including footwear, one day's rest between wearings.
  • Lightly brush garments, especially woolen items, after wearing and between cleanings to keep fresh.
  • Do not store near direct light or heat.
  • Make sure items are completely dry before storing to prevent damaging mildew

So, the next time you feel that slight chill, bring on your winter wear. You're ready!