A Beginner’s Guide to Washing Water-Resistant Gear


You would think that water-resistant clothes are an indulgent purchase when in reality, they have a lot of utility. They don’t just serve hobbyists and athletes for skiing and snowboarding. They can also be used on a normal, snowy day out. They’re a great alternative to your regular pants. Surely, nobody likes getting their clothes wet.

Special fabrics (like waterproof ones) have special needs. They can’t be just treated under the same conditions as regular clothes. If you want to make them last, you’re going to have to care for them the right way.

To make your water-resistant clothes last, you have to know how to wash and dry them the right way. Here are some tips to help you with that.

Look at the Care Tag

If you’re a first-time owner of a waterproof garment, the best place to start learning about how to care for your it is through its care tag. Every piece of clothing has a care tag attached somewhere on the inner side of it (you know, that little white tag everybody usually ignores). It gives basic instructions on the dos and don’ts of caring for your gear. It usually tells you the best way to wash your clothes.

Treat Stains First

Treating a stain should come first before washing because the more time passes, the harder it is to remove it. Washing it right away may even spread the stain, rubbing it off to other parts of the garment. That would mean more work for you.

To get rid of a stain, spray a small amount of fabric spot remover solution on it. Scrub gently with a soft-bristle toothbrush. Rinse off the solution with lukewarm water. Afterward, soak the whole garment in lukewarm water with mild detergent and wash it by hand. Don’t forget to squeeze excess water gently.

Use the Right Detergent

Don’t use just any regular detergent. There are different kinds of detergents out in the market for specific types of fabrics. Might as well get something that’s specifically for waterproof clothes. Do your research, or ask your local outwear shop for advice.

Speaking of detergents, avoid using bleach. This will strip the fabric of its waterproofing layer.

Wash by Hand

It rsquo;s always best to wash by hand, and that goes for all other types of clothes. But because of busy schedules or for the sake of convenience, we let the washing machine do it all for us. You might have to skip the washing machine for this one. Doing it by hand is best so you get to have a close eye on how your Arcteryx ski pants are being washed. Aside from that, it may have buttons, pull strings, etc. that might break off.

Don’t Wring It Too Hard

When you’re washing it by hand, you’re going to have to wring it too. Be sure to remove excess water by gently squeezing the fabric instead of wringing it too hard. Wringing it forcefully might damage the waterproofing layer of the fabric, and even create wrinkle marks.

Air Dry It

Air drying or line drying, in general, prolongs the lifespan of your clothes. It takes away a fraction of the wear and tear your clothes experience. On the other hand, it helps conserve energy by using renewable energy sources such as wind and sunshine to dry your waterproof gear. However, be mindful of washing the garment too often. This may cause damage to the fabric, deteriorating its quality.

There’s no harm in using your dryer if it’s only on rare occasions. Maybe you don’t have the extra time to wait for it to dry. Unless absolutely necessary, hold out on your dryer.

Wash as Often as Needed

Don’t go walking around with your snow gear smelling funny just because you’re afraid of washing it. It’s still clothing after all, so it’s bound to need some washing.

Wash it as often as you need to. It could only be a couple of times throughout the season or every other week. It all depends on how often you use it. However, washing it too often could break down the components that make it water-resistant so watch out for that.

Iron if and Only if Necessary

Usually, you don’t need to iron outdoor gear. Once they’re dry, they’re good to go. But if the wrinkling bothers you you can always iron it out.

Be sure to set your iron to low to medium heat or the setting used for synthetic fabrics. Before it even gets wrinkly at all, you can fix the fabric while washing it.

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