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How to wash polyester: a step-by-step guide

Polyester is a versatile fabric used in a lot of our everyday clothing. Read our guide where we’ll show you how to wash polyester, answer top FAQs, and help you ensure your polyester clothing lasts longer from wash to wear.

Updated By Cleanipedia Team

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Polyester is one of the most common and adaptable fabrics and is used for everything from clothing to upholstery. Knowing how to wash polyester is key to caring for this popular fabric, so read on to check out our tips and tricks for how to clean polyester in the washing machine and by hand.

Knowing how to wash polyester is only half the battle. If you want to brighten up white polyester, soak it overnight in warm water and a squirt of washing-up liquid. To get it even whiter, add 100ml of white vinegar into the drum with your wash.
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RequiredComfort Fresh Sky Ultimate Care
Comfort Ultimate Care Fresh Sky bottle
  • Washing machine
  • Ruber gloves
  • Laundry detergent
  • Fabric conditioner
  • Water

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100% polyester: how to wash it in the washing machine

If you want to know how to wash 100% polyester, we’ve got you covered. Read on for our simple 5-step guide for how to wash polyester in the washing machine.

  1. Check the temperature.

    Washing at a high temperature can damage polyester. Check the care label to see what temperature the item can endure.

  2. Turn the clothes inside-out.

    Polyester’s prone to snagging and bobbling in the machine, so turn it inside-out before you wash. Read our guide on how to stop clothes bobbling for more advice on this.

  3. Be gentle.

    To keep your polyester clothes lasting longer, use a gentle cycle. You can use regular all-purpose detergent such as Persil with polyester.

  4. Use fabric softener in the wash.

    Using a quality fabric softener like Comfort Ultimate Care will help to prevent static problems later on. For more on static prevention, look at our illustrated guide to how to get rid of static in clothes.

  5. Hang your clothes to dry once the cycle is done.

    Whether you have used these steps to learn how to wash a polyester coat, t-shirt, or other clothing, you should aim to air dry your polyester garment.

    In some cases you can tumble dryer polyester but always check the care label and only use a cool setting.

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How to wash 100% polyester by hand

If you wanted to learn how to wash a polyester blanket or jacket, it can usually safely go in the washing machine. However, you may choose to preserve your favourite polyester pieces for longer by washing them by hand. Follow these five simple steps for how to wash a polyester jacket or other garment by hand.

  1. Put warm water in a tub with a squirt of laundry detergent - we recommend Persil.

  2. Sweep your polyester clothes gently around in the soapy water.

  3. When they’re looking clean, rinse with cold water.

  4. Gently press the excess water out against the side of the tub, rather than wringing.

  5. Hang them up and let them dry.

Top tip: When using your hands to sweep your polyester clothing in the water, use rubber gloves to protect your skin from any unwanted adverse reactions. If you have noticed a rash or other allergy symptom, check out our guide to washing powder allergies.

So, there you go. You can now follow our steps for how to wash polyester puffer jackets, blankets, and other garments in the washing machine or by hand. With this guide, you have everything you need to know to do your polyester laundry at home with ease. For more top tips, check out our guide on how to do laundry like a pro.

Frequently asked questions on how to wash polyester

How do I wash a polyester blend?

First, you should always take a look at the care label. This will give you advice on how to clean the specific blended fabric you’re dealing with. In general, cotton-polyester blends will usually do just fine in a regular wash while a silk or wool blend will require special care.

Can polyester be tumble dried?

With polyester, how to wash it isn’t your only problem; you also have to think about drying. It’s best to hang your polyester clothes up to dry, however if you’re in a rush, you can throw your polyester clothes into the tumble dryer. Always check the care label, but as a general rule you will need to use a short, gentle cycle on low heat.

I have stains on my polyester jacket, how do I remove them?

The steps for how to get grease stains out of polyester after washing are relatively simple. Treat the stain as soon as you can. If the stain is already set into the fabric after washing, rub the area with a good-quality liquid detergent, such as Persil, and leave it for 15 minutes before washing as normal following the advice on the care label.

Originally published