Is There Harm In Not Washing Clothes Right Away? Do Stains Set Over Time? The Answer.

October 18, 2016 by Justine Schwartz
shefinds | Style

We’ve all wondered–when you push off doing laundry for a few days, is it actually bad for your clothes? Like, say if you get a stain on your shirt–do you need to treat it right away, or can you throw it in the hamper and get to it later? Do stains become more permanent or more stubborn on clothes if you leave them for longer? I’m on top of my laundry game, but I’m just #AskingForAFriend. Swear.

Let’s see what the laundry experts have to say…

READ MORE: How To Wash Your Jeans So They Last Forever

“The sooner you treat stains, the better as some stains can become permanent over time,”  Tide & Downy Principal Scientist Mary Johnson told me over email. So the answer is yes, and what can people who hate doing laundry do about it? Johnson says that you can save your favorite clothes from stains by doing two things:

1. Turn the garment inside out from the stain and run cold water over the stain to “push” the stain out.

2. Reverse the garment and pre-treat the stain with a product like Tide Ultra Stain Release and wash per the instructions listed on the care label.

READ MORE: The Millennial’s Guide To Laundry: Everything You Need To Know

So, there you have it–the answer to whether stains set over time (unfortunately, yes!) and exactly what to do about it. Will you be better about treating yours now??

READ MORE: Why You Should Fold Clothes As Soon As You Take Them Out Of The Dryer


Editorial Director

Justine Schwartz is a veteran women's lifestyle editor; she's written extensively about style & beauty tips, health advice and wedding planning for more than a decade. Her work has appeared in New York Magazine, Huffington Post and New York Weddings. Justine has been with SheFinds since 2010; you can reach her via email at [email protected]

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