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Professionally clean

The primary chemical solvent used in dry-cleaning, perchloroethylene (or perc), is a toxic chemical capable of causing liver damage and respiratory failure. Yikes. It can also lead to groundwater contamination and air pollution.
Skip the standard dry cleaning and opt for "green" or "organic" dry cleaners--a non-toxic, environmentally safe alternative. These cleaners often use CO2 or water as the primary solvent, but they have fancy equipment so it’s not like washing it at home. Be sure to ask if they use perc, hydrocarbons, or D-5 cleaners, and be sure to avoid the toxic stuff. Just say no to perc.

 

Hand wash

Fill a sink with cold water. Add a tablespoon of delicate soap--scan the label and choose a plant-based detergent free of fragrance, optical brighteners, chlorine, and phosphates that are all bad for you and the environment. We recommend brands like Seventh Generation, Meyer’s, Honest Company, Method, or Earth Friendly Products. Place your item into the water and gently swirl it around for a few minutes. Drain and refill the sink with clean, cold water. Rinse your garment by swishing it around once more, and then gently press it to remove excess water. Be careful to not wring or twist, as this can distort its shape. Reshape the garment on a dry towel. Roll up the towel, pressing as you go, to help extract the water still left in the garment. Finally, reshape the garment, and lay it flat on a drying rack or on a fresh towel to air dry.

Wash cold

Wash clothes in cold water, as opposed to warm or hot, and always wait until you have a full load. Scan the label and choose a plant-based detergent free of fragrance, optical brighteners, chlorine, and phosphates that are all bad for you and the environment. We recommend brands like Seventh Generation, Meyer’s, Honest Company, Method, or Earth Friendly Products. Hang or lay flat to dry.

 

Steaming & ironing

A lot of fabrics can be steamed or ironed on a low setting, but we recommend you test a small area first. Use a dry iron on low for anything structured like a blazer or jacket--do not steam as it may affect the shape. If a fabric is shiny or has embellishments, do not iron.

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