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How to care for your maternity clothes

Posted on 9/01/2013 in Pregnancy & Baby, Style & Well-Being

Make your pregnancy wardrobe last by caring for your maternity clothes.  

Stretch jersey knit fabrics are commonly used for maternity clothing. Jersey drapes well and the added stretch means it will be comfortable and grow with you. 

Remember to turn them inside out to prevent pilling.  Also, do not wash your jersey knit tops and dresses with items like towels which produce lint. Knit fabrics have a tendency to pick up lint and will no longer look new. 

Heat is the enemy of stretch fabrics as it will degrade the fabric. These should generally be washed in cool water and laid flat to dry in the shade. 

Here are some laundry tips for caring for your new pregnancy clothes.
  • Start by sorting your laundry by washing method, colour and type of fabric
  • Turn your clothes inside out to reduce fading and prevent pilling
  • Check pockets - especially for items like tissues 
  • Delicates should be placed inside a mesh lingerie bag and the clasps done up on bras to prevent their hooks snagging and ruining other garments - those hooks are notorious for snagging knit fabrics
  • Do up zips to prevent them from snagging on other garments
  • Snaps should be closed
  • Secure velcro as this can snag and cause abrasions to delicate items and can cause pilling if rubbed against knit fabrics
  • Do not button up garments as this can place stress on the buttons and cause the buttons to fall off
  • Make sure the detergent is fully dissolved in the water before loading your clothes
  • Try to avoid fabric softener on sportswear as it can interfere with the moisture-wicking properties of the fabric
  • Don't forget to take the load out straight after the wash has finished.  Leaving the damp clothes combined together will lead to colors bleeding and discoloring other garments.

Important:  Items like towels, robes, flannelette and chenille create lint which sticks to other items of clothing. Jersey fabrics attract lint and will look pilled and old if washed with these lint producing items. 

cold machine wash
warm machine wash
hot machine wash
hand wash only
do not wash

The soaking cycle is generally used for heavily stained garments like cloth nappies. Part of the soaking cycle is the agitation to loosen embedded soils and stains. This agitates the clothes causing them to rub against each other. Soft fabrics like jersey can pill with excessive rubbing especially if there are harsh fabrics like jeans present in the wash.

Hand wash means that the fabric is delicate. Beware of machines that have a hand wash cycle as this usually includes a soaking cycle that can harm your delicates. Do not wring, twist or rub the clothing as this agitates the fabric causing it to pill.

can bleach if needed
bleach with chlorine
bleach with oxygen
do not bleach
do not bleach

tumble dry low
tumble dry normal
do not tumble dry
line line
drip dry
dry flat

Most maternity clothes contain some stretch in the form of elastane or lycra or spandex. These elastics are degraded by heat and generally cannot be tumbled dried. Many jersey fabrics should be pulled into shape and dried flat - this will also reduce the wrinkles and creases.

iron with low heat
iron with medium heat
iron with hight heat
do not iron

dry cleanable
with PCE
dryclean with 
hydrocarbon solvents
wet clean
do not dryclean

Garments that have dry clean only on their label do so for a reason. The fabrics are delicate or may contain embellishments like beading. These types of garments are not everyday clothes and are usually designed for special occasion wear.

Remember to follow the care instructions on the label inside your clothes to keep them looking their best. Each of our product descriptions include these care instructions for your garment so that you can make the right choice for your lifestyle and enjoy a stylish pregnancy.

Please let us know your handy washing tips in the comments below...... And if all else fails just give it to your mother!!  She'll know how to do it......



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