Tips for keeping the colour in your colours

When you buy that red jumper, or that bright yellow top, you don’t buy those items hoping they will fade do you? Ideally you’d like them to stay as bright as possible for as long as possible. You’ve bought them for their colour.

Depending on the item, the way you wash your clothes and what you wash them with this doesn’t always happen and with some items you can be left with something that looks old and tired before it’s time, like that black t-shirt top that looks a bit grey. Not exactly the look you were going for I’m sure.

There are tons of products you can buy which are designed to keep the colour where it is, and not let colours run into each other, some are better than others of course, but there are also some natural ways of keeping on top of this as well.

Here are just a few of them I’ve pulled together to share with you, have you tried any of these before? :

Sort your washing by colour

I’m not just talking about the obvious whites and colours split here. If you’ve ever washed a red item with a load of white school shirts by mistake you’ll know about the pink tinge. It only has to be something small like a sock to cause a total disaster of course – and that is so easily done when you are in a hurry.

However, sometimes just washing other colours together can alter the look of a fabric. Try sorting your washing into blues, reds, yellows, blacks and browns and so on if you are concerned about items loosing their original colour. Don’t group your indigo skinny jeans with your pale blue skinny jeans as the colour from the dark pair could run onto the light pair.

Use Black Pepper

Sounds crazy right? Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it! Keep your colours fresh by adding a few teaspoons of black pepper when you wash. The flakes will wash away during the rinse cycle, so don’t worry about them being dotted all over your clothes. You won’t be picking them off your clothes for the next week, I promise!

Turn your clothes inside out

My grandmother always did this. Nothing ever got washed unless it was inside out. I used to think, jeeze what a ball ache, but now of course realise that she was absolutely right (as she generally was) and I should have been doing this for years.

You can prevent your colourful clothes from turning drab by flipping them inside out before washing them. The reason I got out of the habit of this is that it can add another step to the laundry routine, when you are already pressed for time. Although, with the children’s clothes they are often already inside out so this is not always the case. It’s worth doing as it certainly seems to keep colours brighter and more vivid for longer. Do you do this?

Use a cup of Vinegar

What now? Who wants their clothes smelling of vinegar, especially that slogan t-shirt your daughter owns, I can hear the teenage cries from here! I promise they don’t smell of vinegar at the end of the cycle. Try adding one cup of white vinegar to a load during the rinse cycle. Vinegar helps to “set” colours and prevents build-up of detergent residue, which can contribute to colour fading.

The other benefit to using a cup of vinegar is that it’s a natural clothing softener as well – so that’s a bonus!

Use half a cup of Salt

Pepper or salt? Salt or pepper? It’s really up to you. Try pouring ½ cup of salt in the wash cycle to prevent the dyes in coloured fabrics from bleeding. This method works especially well on new clothes. Salt can also help restore the once-vivid colours in fading fabrics. Give it a try!

Do you have any tips to share of your own? Leave me a comment below with your top tips. What’s your favourite method for keeping the colours in your clothes? Have you ever had any disasters when it comes to colours running? Were you able to fix this?

This is a collaborative post.

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