Ahhh summer. The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and it’s time to get outside and enjoy the weather. That means hiking, camping, gardening, and of course swimming! Obviously, swimsuits are designed to be in the water, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t affected by environmental factors.
Sunshine, heat, salt water, and chlorine can all be hard on swimsuits. They cause them to stretch and fade. This means your swimsuits won’t last as long – and could even subject you to some embarrassing mishaps!
Luckily, at Coronet Equipment, we’re laundry experts and can share our advice with you about how to properly care for your swimsuits to keep them looking and feeling like new season after season. Here are a few of the best tips we’ve picked up along the way:
Rinse with fresh water
There are lots of reasons to rinse yourself off before and after taking a dip. The water we swim in can be hard on delicate fabrics. Salt, chlorine, and even mineral-rich lakes and rivers put stress on your swimsuits. A rinse after swimming allows you to wash off the water on your body and can save your suit from damage.
Did you know you should also rinse off before you go swimming? You’ve probably seen signs urging you to rinse before getting in public pools. It’s not just for hygiene purposes. When you take a quick shower before getting into a body of water, your swimsuit actually fills with the freshwater. This protects it from absorbing the harsher water and any damaging chemicals or minerals.
Handle stains at the source
Swimming often means you are in an environment where you may be more prone to stains. Substances in the water, sand, dirt and sunscreen can all stain your swimsuits. Luckily, most of these stains can be fixed with some simple detergent spot care and a thorough washing.
The reactions caused by water and sunscreen can also cause strange stains. Sunscreen stains are typically oily. If you accidentally get sunscreen on your swimsuit, it’s important not to wick it off or rub it in. Instead, get in the water right away and try to rinse it immediately. If you do end up with an oil stain on your suit, fill a spray bottle with equal parts white vinegar and water, and give your suit a spray before you throw it in the wash. This should be enough to get the stain out.
Another common stain culprit is an ingredient in sun protection called avobenzone. This can react with iron in hard water and create a rusty stain. Squirting some dish soap on your swimwear should be enough to get this stain out. If you can, try to look for a sunscreen without this ingredient, especially if you have to reapply your sunscreen a lot throughout the day.
Wash swimsuits with care
After a day at the beach or pool, you should wash your swimsuit right away. Many people leave swimsuits to dry in their bathrooms after a day in the water. This allows the swimsuit to absorb the water you’ve been swimming in, and if you leave it out for too long, you may notice a mildew smell. Simply rinsing with water and leaving the suit to dry isn’t enough either. You should take time to wash your suit with a gentle detergent as soon as you return home.
Protect delicate fabrics
Handwashing is often the best option for swimsuits. Because they’ve already been exposed to harsh outdoor conditions, take time to pamper your delicate swimwear. You could also wash your swimwear on a delicate cycle if your washing machine has one. Most new machines offer a setting that is just as safe and gentle as hand washing. For maximum protection, turn your suits inside out, put them in a mesh bag, and use a gentle detergent.
A delicate machine cycle works wonders on swimsuits but when it comes to drying, you’ll need to do it the old-fashioned way. Putting your swimsuit in the dryer can damage the lining, cause fading, and deteriorate the stretchy nature of the fabric. To air dry your swimsuits, lay them flat so they’ll retain their shape. You can help speed up the process by flipping them as they dry or putting them near a fan. Be sure your swimsuit has dried completely before you put it away. Storing it too soon can lead to funky smells and fabric damage.
Summer swimming is a favourite pastime for lots of us, and taking care of your favourite swimwear will help it last longer and look great. Use our tips to make sure you’re washing it correctly. If you’re looking for new equipment with more gentle hand wash options, come by Coronet Equipment to find out about our top quality machines. Summer fun doesn’t have to mean sacrificing your favourite swimsuit!