How To: Bleach Safely
Whether you bleach your clothes to remove stains and odours, brighten your whites or pow-wow your patterns, there’s no question that it works.
But the truth is, bleach has a bad wrap. And we get it, it’s kinda scary. We’ve all had that one experience where we ruined our favourite wardrobe staple with bleach and told ourselves never again. But today, we’re going to conquer those fears with our tried-and-tested tips so you can bleach your clothes like a pro.
First up, when it comes to bleach, there are two types: Chlorine and Oxygen
So what’s the difference?
Chlorine bleach is often sold under the brand ‘White King’. This is the type of bleach that hospitals and public pools use to kill bacteria. It works by breaking down chemical bonds in a process called oxidation and when used in the laundry, eliminates the molecule’s ability to absorb light – effectively making the whole garment appear white. There’s no doubt, it’s a strong chemical and if not used properly, it can be hazardous. But it’s important to note that it’s not considered dangerous when used domestically, as it’s broken down by sunlight and other natural elements like water.
On the other hand, oxygen bleach is the safer cousin and our go-to. It still oxidises the molecules in stains to stop them from absorbing light, but it doesn’t have the same range. It will brighten colours, lift stains with gusto and leave the fibres of your fabric alone. In most cases, it won’t penetrate the dyes that colour your clothes, therefore it’s considered colour-safe. It’s also natural and biodegradable, which is why it’s our choice for stain removal.
How to bleach safely using our products
Here are our top three tips to always bleach safely:
- The spot treat rule. Find a discreet patch and pop a bit of Stain Remover or Powder Booster on. Wait 30 minutes – you’ll know if you’re going to have an issue. Look for any colour and texture changes.
- The 30 minute stain removal rule. Bleach will work effectively on a fresh stain within a 15 minute time frame. There’s no need to leave it lingering if you’re just looking to remove a stain.
- The two hour soak rule. If you’ve got discolouration, i.e. on sheets, white t-shirts etc, and you don’t mind if the bleach starts to fade out the colour of your items (i.e. it's white or faded anyway) you can even go for longer. It’ll keep looking for things to oxidise for up to 5-6 hours, so use that time if you want to.
Stick to these simple rules and make bleach work for you and your wardrobe.
And there you have it, everything you need to know about safely using bleach to clean your clothes. Now go ahead and enjoy your newly acquired life skill.
Got stinky activewear?
Find out how to wash your sweatiest activewear with our favourite tips here.