How To Preserve Printed Shirts

How To Preserve Printed Shirts

Posted on October 31st, 2022.

If you are like most millennials, you have several screen-printed shirts. They might be shirts with a company logo, a shirt from an activity, a shirt with your favorite movie quote or with your favorite characters. Cotton shirts with “ironic” quotes or images are particularly popular, though. You may have some ‘nicer’ clothes that have items silk screened for an added touch.

While there are some of those printed shirts we could care less about, there are a few that we’re sure you would like to keep in great condition for as long as you can. For example, that sweet, sweet Pulp Fiction T-shirt that you got for your birthday last year. If you just wash it like I would any other shirt, it will start to look old pretty quickly and lose it’s...charm. Taking all of this into account, today we bring you some very easy tips and rules for washing a shirt with a printed image or quote.

Always, always turn the shirt inside out when washing

Doing this will help preserve the design on your shirt, but at the same time getting it nice and washed and cleaned. If you end up ignoring any other rule on this list, make sure to follow this one. Turning the shirt inside out prevents the image from receiving so much agitation from the washer, especially if you have a washer with an agitator. The friction of the machine will likely cause the image to crack. If you’ve ever washed a shirt with a print of medium or bad quality, you know what we’re talking about. It comes out of the washer all cracked and discolored.

Don’t wash the shirt on hot temperature

It’s generally recommended to wash ALL shirts on cool and only rarely wash them on warm cycles – and only if it’s extremely necessary. The plastic-type property of the silk designs in cotton shirts are very susceptible to warm/hot water and they will most probably bubble, crack and peel under harsh conditions.

If you can, wash the garment on the delicate cycle and with a delicate, but effective detergent.

Because there is less agitation on a delicate cycle, there is less wear and tear on the printed image. Less wear and tear equals a longer shirt life. Delicate detergents are recommended, since harsher, stronger detergents may cause excessive wear and tear on that great Rick and Morty design.

  • Use fabric softener or dryer sheets when washing
  • Do this to avoid wrinkles (also, remove clothes as soon as the dryer shuts off!)
  • Don't overload the washing machine!
  • Even though it’s common knowledge that overloading your washer will definitely do some damage on its drum and affect its performance (both in front-load and top-load washers), overloading your washer will affect your white clothes! If the shirts are white, wash them with only whites!
  • Fold your shirts after washing them

To that end, it's generally recommended you fold sweaters and t-shirts to help them last longer because putting them on hangers can stretch them out.

Now you know! Just follow these quick and easy tips when washing your printed shirts (which we are sure are super awesome...) and extend their lifespan a bit.

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