Admit it, one of the first things you look for on a dress or blouse that you like is the care label. Can you drop it off at the dry cleaners to have it cleaned, or can you toss it in the washer at home? It’s a fact that garment care labels influence our purchasing decisions when it comes to shopping for clothing. Whatever your preference, properly caring for clothing based on the manufacturer’s instructions ensures that garments look better and last longer, saving you time and money.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Care Labeling Rule requires clothing manufacturers and importers to provide regular care instructions through the use of care labels. These care instructions are divided into six basic categories: washing, bleaching, drying, ironing, dry cleaning, and warnings. Instructions can be spelled out, as in “Machine wash. Tumble dry.”, but many manufacturers use graphic symbols in addition to the written instructions a kind of shorthand for care techniques. The symbols and standards used here in the United States vary from those used in Europe and other countries.
Check out this handy garment care symbol chart for more information:
Here are some things to remember:
For the protection of your garment, follow the instructions and take it to your preferred dry cleaner for professional care.