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General Washing of Dress Shirts

ProfessorShak

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Hey all,

I've been sending off my dress shirts to the dry cleaners for years now, knowing very little about the effects it has.

After looking over severa threads, I've decided to start cleaning and ironing myself. A couple of questions:

1. Can I stick my white dress shirts with the rest of my whites such as towels, socks, undershirts, etc...? Can I do the same with my Lite Blue and Gray Shirts with colors?

2. When drying, does it have to be in direct sunlight or does it just need to have enough space to breath? On that note, how far apart should each shirt be from each other to dry properly?

3. I've looked into OxyClean but am not sure how to use it. I use the public laundromat in my apartment which uses front loading machines. The washing won't start unless the door is closed and will lock after that. How can I safely use the OxyClean with Liquid Detergent?

4. I've heard different opinions with starch sprays during ironing, but if used sparsely, quick light spray 8 - 12" away, would that be ok? My wife uses Niagra Spray and it works AMAZINGLY.

Thanks all and any feedback is greatly appreciated
 

unicornwarrior

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only thing I have to say is I wouldn't recommend washing your white dress shirts with the rest of your whites. When I wash my dress shirts (if I choose not to dry clean) I make sure it's only a few shirts and on the most gentle of settings.
 

Sprezzatura2010

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I've been washing my shirts with the rest of my clothes, sheets, and towels for as long as I've been doing laundry. Just as long as you don't dry them, you'll be fine. (Ditto for nicer OTC socks; they're fine unless you dry them, after which they become decidedly UTC.)
 

flatfront

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All my whites go in together as do all my colours. Gentle setting unless heavily soiled. Occasional oxyclean (every 5washes) wih the whites to add sparkle and never ever put shirts in the drier.
Iron while slighty damp and you will have years of use and save yourself a fortune in cleaning bills and your shirts will last for ages.
 

trogdor

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Originally Posted by ProfessorShak
After looking over severa threads, I've decided to start cleaning and ironing myself.

Good man!

Originally Posted by ProfessorShak
1. Can I stick my white dress shirts with the rest of my whites such as towels, socks, undershirts, etc...? Can I do the same with my Lite Blue and Gray Shirts with colors?

Sure. I do. Stick a couple of scoops of Oxi-clean in as well, and you're good to go. I like the thought that the towels etc. will prevent the shirts from getting bashed about too much.

Originally Posted by ProfessorShak
2. When drying, does it have to be in direct sunlight or does it just need to have enough space to breath? On that note, how far apart should each shirt be from each other to dry properly?

Depends how warm the ambient temperature is in your house/apartment. I'd avoid putting them in direct sunlight (that can make the colours fade), but as long as there's enough room for the water to evaporate from them, you're fine.

Originally Posted by ProfessorShak
3. I've looked into OxyClean but am not sure how to use it. I use the public laundromat in my apartment which uses front loading machines. The washing won't start unless the door is closed and will lock after that. How can I safely use the OxyClean with Liquid Detergent?

Just put a scoop or two of Oxi-Clean in with the dry clothes before you close the door. That's what I do, and I've had no problem; as soon as the washer fills with water, it will dissolve and get to work, and it won't harm the clothes when dry.
 

Cornellian

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http://www.customshirt1.com/ASK/laund01.html

I usually wash my white things like dishtowels, undershirts, etc. in warm/hot water, but my white shirts in warm/cold water (i.e. separately). But you're probably ok putting them together.
 

Holdfast

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I tend to wash all dress shirts, regardless of colour, together. Never had any problem doing this. Apart from once when a red sock slipped in there too somehow, and then I found I had a new pastel pink dress shirt.....

Other coloured items in another wash. Towels, tea towels, and random other whites all in a 3rd wash. Bed linen in a final wash. If my washer-dryer was bigger, I guess I'd combine the bed linen an the towel wash, but it isn't, so I can't. I'd still wash all the shirts together and separately from everything else.
 

TCN

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I tend to wash my whites in warm water on a regular setting, while I wash my shirts in cold on gentle. I use unscented Tide powder with a little Shout in the collar. I do not care for OxyClean at all, in fact my wife (who likes OxyClean) and I are in a disagreement over whether or not OxyClean was the culprit in ruining a blouse of hers.

The only shirts I do at home now are my Charvets and Brooks non-irons, all the rest (even Borrellis, Hilditch, and T&A) go to a local shirt launderer who I know does a good job - they've let me tour they're facility and educated me on their methods and equipment.

Regarding spray starch and the like, I've been told that the spray on varieties are not as harmful as the washed in stuff the cleaners use, but I still just apply a little spray on sizing to the collar, cuffs and placket at home.
 

Sanguis Mortuum

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I just shove everything in (shirts, jeans, whites, colours), set it to 30 degrees, and hit go.

This will probably backfire on me someday though
 

Milhouse

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I wash all my shirts together. The color doesn't matter, good shirts seem pretty safe from bleeding color.

I use powdered detergent, and I wet the shirts, rub some detergent into the collars, and then throw them into a cool wash cycle. They come out looking great.

I hang them up on white plastic hangers to dry (just in case there is a color problem). Space them out and hang them where air can move. Sunlight is not necessary.

No starch when I iron them. I don't like the stiff starch look.
 

Spencer Young

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Originally Posted by Milhouse
I wash all my shirts together. The color doesn't matter, good shirts seem pretty safe from bleeding color.

I use powdered detergent, and I wet the shirts, rub some detergent into the collars, and then throw them into a cool wash cycle. They come out looking great.

I hang them up on white plastic hangers to dry (just in case there is a color problem). Space them out and hang them where air can move. Sunlight is not necessary.

No starch when I iron them. I don't like the stiff starch look.


I have the exact same process and it works wonderfully.
 

ziggyosk

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do you have to put them outside to dry or can you hang them inside?
 

spence

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Originally Posted by ziggyosk
do you have to put them outside to dry or can you hang them inside?
Don't think it would matter unless you have a better breeze. I hang mine in the bathroom and they do just fine.

-spence
 

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