Keeping whites white for longer

White clothes are something I have consciously steered in the opposite direction from since having children. I mean white and kids just don’t mix do they?

Since my big two started wearing white shirts for school I’ve had to figure out ways to keep them looking bright, so I’ve been a bit more brave about getting white things for the rest of us.

How do you keep your whites white? Here are a few tips:

Always separate whites and colours

I’ve been guilty in the past of throwing everything in together. This has normally been when I’ve literally only had one or two white items to wash and I can’t justify doing a separate load.

Even if everything you are washing has been washed before and you are confident that the clothes won’t run, there will always be some colour particles released into the wash.

This means that over time you get that greying of your whites, where they have that constant dirty, mucky look – no one wants to wear whites like that, so avoid mixing washes. Many washing machines have a half load setting, so you can always use that if you only have a few things.

I probably only do one white wash a week, compared to 7-10 coloured washes a week (more if I’m washing bedding and towels). We have white school shirts, a couple of white t-shirts and then the odd smarter outfit like this one shoulder midi dress.

Use the hottest water safe for the fabric

The hotter the water, the more germs you kill and with whites in particular, the better your chances of getting them nice and white again – do check your garment care labels though to avoid shrinkage and damage to your clothes. You don’t want to damage that pretty lace dress when you’ve only worn it once.

Use an in-wash bleach

Using a specific bleach in with your whites wash can be really beneficial. These come out not only looking great, but smelling pretty fantastic too. I now use an in-wash bleach with my whites every time they are washed just to be on the safe side, as I think once things begin to get that grey tinge it can be hard to get them back from the dark side!

I love the freshness that this process brings to the white clothes. Meaning tops like this zip crop top stay super bright for much longer.

Have you had much success getting very discoloured whites back to a state of bright before? I’d love to know if you you have.

Don’t overload the washing machine

Hands up if you are guilty of this? I know I am. Normally on those days when I’m drowning in washing and completely run off my feet. Those are the days I try to cram far too much into the washing machine.

The thing is, you aren’t helping yourself when you do this because the machine can’t possibly wash your clothes well enough if it is crammed full. How can you expect to have whites that are super white, when this is your approach? Thing is…I know this when I’m piling stuff into the machine, I just get carried away trying to get stuff done I think.

Just fill the washing machine until it’s comfortable. Bedding and towels can take up a ton of room can’t they, so if you’ve got white towels to wash for example, don’t try and wash them all at the same time, pop a couple in and have some spares so you can rotate them.

Attack stains as soon as possible

If one of your whites has a stain, the quicker you attack it, the better. That doesn’t just go for things like ketchup and red wine, it’s also the stains you can’t see, like sweat marks. The faster you deal with things like this the better, especially when it comes to keeping your whites white. I manged to get chocolate off this white t-shirt pretty easily because I did it straight away.

Do you have any other tips for keeping white things white as long as possible? Feel free to share your tips in a comment below.

This is a collaborative post

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