It can be very frustrating if your black clothes have faded in the wash, but you don't have to let it get to that point. By adhering to a few rules while washing, you can prevent your favorite black garments from losing their color. If that's not enough, below are a few more tricks you can try.
1 Wash your clothes less often.
No matter how carefully you treat your black clothes and how many precautions you take during washing, the washing cycle will fade the dye, eventually causing the clothes to become faded. To combat this, you should only wash your black clothes when absolutely necessary. If you can skip a wash here and there, do so to keep the color nice and deep.
2 Sort by color.
If possible, only wash your black clothes with other black or dark clothes. Paint tends to run during washing, but if there are no light garments to absorb the black paint, the paint will be reabsorbed by the dark garments themselves.
◦ You can also sort them by weight. Then you better protect the fabric and color of your more delicate black garments.
3 Wash the clothes inside out.
The side of the fabric that comes into contact with the washing machine drum will experience the most wear. This will cause the paint to fade more quickly there. Protect the outside of black clothing by turning each garment inside out before putting it in the washing machine.
◦ Black colors also fade due to the friction of the garments against each other.
◦ The friction damages the fibers, and the ends of those fibers are what you see. If the surface of the fabric is damaged, you will see less color there, even if the paint has not faded.
◦ You can reduce the amount of friction even more by closing the zippers and hooks.
4 Use cold water.
Hot water causes more dye to be lost from the fabric, so bright colors and black clothes are more likely to fade if you wash them at warm temperatures. If you wash them at colder temperatures, the paint will remain beautiful longer.
◦ Hot water breaks the fibers, making the colors fade more quickly.
◦ Wash your clothes on the coldest setting possible. The water should not be warmer than 30ºC.
5 Use the shortest washing program.
Just as you should put your black clothes in the wash as little as possible, you should also try to keep the washing cycle as short as possible. The less time your clothes spend in the washing machine, the smaller the chance that the paint will run.
◦ A program for delicate fabrics works well, but you should of course choose a program depending on how dirty your clothes are and what fabric the garments are made of.
6 Add a special detergent.
Nowadays there are all kinds of special detergents for dark fabrics. These agents help retain the dye during the wash cycle, making your clothes less likely to fade.
◦ If you don't have a detergent intended for dark clothes, use one that is suitable for washing at cold temperatures.
◦ Note that detergents do not necessarily contribute to fading, although some are better at preventing it than others. Any liquid detergent is fine, but make sure it does not contain bleach.
◦ Liquid detergent washes better at cold temperatures than powder. Powder does not completely dissolve in cold water, especially if you use a short cycle.
7 Skip the dryer.
Heat is the enemy of black clothing. Hang black clothing on the washing line, or place it on a rack to dry. Do not use the dryer unless absolutely necessary. If you must use the dryer, do not add a sheet of fabric softener.
◦ If you line dry your clothes, make sure they are not hanging in the sun. Sunlight acts as a natural bleach, which will fade your black clothes.
◦ If you still want to use the dryer, set it to the coldest temperature. Keep a close eye on it so that you can feel whether the clothing is becoming too dry or too hot. Remove the clothing when it is still slightly damp.
1 Add a little vinegar.
Add 250 ml of white vinegar while rinsing the washing machine. Pour the vinegar directly into the drum, not into the detergent dispenser.
◦ By adding vinegar you can keep the clothes nice and black, because it fixes the color and removes detergent residues. Otherwise, those residues can leave a film on your clothes, making it look like the color has faded.
◦ Vinegar is also a natural fabric softener.
◦ The vinegar evaporates during the rinse, so you should not smell anything. If it still smells a bit like vinegar, it will disappear after you let the clothes dry on the washing line.
2 Try salt.
Add 120 grams of salt to the washing program. Put the salt in the drum immediately when you put the dark clothes in.
◦ Salt prevents the paint from bleeding through clothing. It's especially useful when washing new clothes for the first time, but it can also freshen faded colors by removing any lingering detergent residue.
3 Use a pinch of pepper.
Add 1 - 2 teaspoons of black pepper to your laundry drum as you put the clothes in. Do not put it in the detergent drawer.
◦ Pepper scours away any remaining detergent residue, and the black tint of the pepper can enhance the tint of the paint.
◦ During rinsing, the pepper disappears from your clothes.
4 Put some baking soda in the drum.
Put 100 grams of baking soda in your drum when you put the black clothes in it. The baking soda should be put in the drum and not in the drawer. Wash the load as normal.
◦ Baking soda helps whiten white clothes. But you can also make colors, including black, brighter.
5 Harness the power of coffee or tea
Brew 2 cups (500 ml) of black coffee or tea. Add this to the washing machine rinse water after washing.
◦ Coffee and black tea are both used as natural dyes. Light fabrics turn brown, but black fabrics enhance the dark color.
6 Fabric paint
Have your clothes become faded despite the above tips, or have you found a pair of dull black trousers at the back of your closet? Then textile paint can offer a solution. This paint is available for all kinds of textile colors, including black clothing. This allows you to breathe new life into your faded garments by dyeing them. It is important to always read the instructions on the packaging, this will prevent anything from going wrong during the painting process.