Many of us will admit to shoving our bras into a packed underwear drawer at the end of the day, or hanging them from door handles – hey, we’re not judging. But it turns out, that’s not the proper way to store them if you want them to last. (It’s news to us, too).
Katie Thacker, from the buying team at Boux Avenue, says while storage techniques are often reliant on the amount of space you’ve got to work with, customers are generally advised to store bras in a drawer that’s big enough to lay each of them down flat without folding in half.
This is especially important if your bra has underwire and is a moulded style – for example, it has some padding or a boost, as it “will help avoid losing the shape in the cup and any creasing,” says Thacker.
To keep the cup shape and “encourage firmness”, Michael Thomson, owner of Pour Moi, advises popping a pair of socks or knickers inside the cups, while they’re laying flat.
Folding your bra by twisting the cups under each other can damage both the cups and the wiring of it. Thomson says you should care for your bras the same way you would a suit – “you would never fold or misshape it, and the same level of care should be made.”
You should only fold your bra in half (better known as chucking it in the drawer) if it’s a ‘cut and sew’ or unpadded style, adds Thacker. Silk bras, or ones made of delicate fabrics like lace, should be folded inside out in the drawer to prevent damage.
Interestingly, to keep your bra in shape for longer, Agent Provocateur urges people not to wear the same one for more than three days in a row, as it causes it to stretch and lose shape. “When you wash a bra it returns the fibres back to the original state so helps to keep it fitting well,” they add.
While we’re on the topic of looking after our bras – how often should we be washing them? Experts from Persil and Good Housekeeping believe washing after 3-4 wears is best. In sweaty season, you might want to do it more often – and sports bras should definitely be washed after each wear.
“Washing gets rid of the oils and germs that accumulate, so the more oil you’re producing, the more frequently you’ll need to launder your bra,” says Good Housekeeping Institute’s Lexie Sachs.
Always check the label before washing, as some bras should only be hand-washed. Others should be washed on no more than a 30-degree cycle, as the hotter the water, the more prone bras are to shrinkage.
It’s also recommended that you fasten the hook and eye clasps before putting it in the washing machine, to prevent the clasps from getting caught in the drum and damaging your bra.
You might want to pop them in a net bag to keep them separated from all your other clothes, too. Haven’t got a net bag? A pillowcase should do the trick.
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