November 16, 2018 4 min read

One of the most appreciated linen’s feature is its durability. Coming from nature and only treated with high-quality materials, it can last you for years. 

There are two common concerns regarding linen that we see. One is that linen is high-maintenance, and it takes more time and effort to take care of it when compared to cotton or similar natural fabrics. And the second concern is that linen gets unbelievably wrinkly after washing.

While linen does indeed tend to wrinkle, both of these concerns are not completely true. Linen does not require any special treatment like dry cleaning. In fact, taking care of it is easier than it seems. Linen fabric can be washed in a washing machine or hand washed using regular washing detergent. It even dries faster than most other fabrics!

This time, we have prepared you with some useful tips and tricks on maintaining linen’s cleanliness without damaging the fabric. Whether you’re interested in general rules or how to deal with specific stains, you’ll find some useful information below.

In photo: Cafe Creme Linen Placemat + White Linen Napkin

How to wash linen fabric? General rules.

– During the first wash, it is best to use a temperature lower than 40°C.

– Linen should be washed at 40°C. If some heavy-duty stains appear, you can increase the temperature up to 60°C. However, high temperatures shouldn’t be used too often as linen tends to shrink.

– Linen should be washed separately from other fabrics and colors.

How to wash linen fabric in the washing machine?

– Linen is machine-washable. If yours allows, choose the highest possible water level.

– Do not overload the washing machine. Overloading can result in pieces of laundry intertwining with each other, twisting, and changing their original shape.

How to hand-wash linen fabric?

– If you decide to hand-wash your linen pieces, use lots of water, as linen tends to absorb great amounts of it.

– Rinse the linen carefully. Do not twist, crumple, or rub the fabric hard – it can result in damage.

– Hand-wash is best for thin linen fabrics, which could get damaged in the washing machine.

What detergents should I use for linen fabric?

– It is advised to choose soft, neutral detergents for delicate fabrics.

– Avoid detergents with bleach (i.e. chlorine, peroxide).

– Do not put detergents directly on the fabric.

– Detergents must be fully rinsed after washing.

In photos: Thin Black Stripes Linen Placemats + Dark Grey Linen Napkins

How to dry linen fabric?

– Linen can be dried in a tumble dryer at a low temperature, hung, or left to dry flat on a white towel. 

To avoid bigger wrinkles and to maintain the normal shape of your linen piece, it is best to flat dry it. Arrange your linen on a flat surface and let it dry naturally. When you hang linen on a hanging rack, bigger creases may form in places where the hanging line goes. Also, this may cause linen to stretch as the water travels to the bottom and weighs down the edges of the pieces.

– If using a tumble dryer, take the linen out when it’s still damp and complete drying by hanging it or laying it flat on a white towel.

– If possible, allow white linen pieces to dry out in the sun. It will help to maintain fresh whiteness.

– Do not overdry linen as it can weaken or shrink the fabric.

How to iron linen fabric?

For the best result, iron the pieces while they are still a bit damp.

– Use medium or high temperatures and steam. If needed, you can also spray some water on the fabric.

– Iron on the reverse side.

– If you like the natural, slightly crinkled look of linen, you can skip the ironing. Spraying some water on the biggest wrinkles will help to even them out slightly. Simply lay your linen piece on a flat surface, spray some water, and even out with your hand. Allow to dry.

Can I bleach linen fabric?

– You can only bleach white linen pieces. Do not bleach the colored items.

– It is recommended to use oxygen-based bleaching agents.

– Do not use chlorine-based bleach. It changes the hue of white fabrics and weakens the fiber, which results in quick weariness and even ripping.

– Use bleach carefully. Avoid doing it too often.

In photos: Cafe Creme Linen Placemats + White Linen Napkin

How to clean stains from linen fabric?

– There are plenty of tips and tricks on cleaning specific stains, but not all of them are effective; while some can even damage linen fabric. If you’ve spilled some wine on a tablecloth, coffee on your shirt or some chocolate ended up on your napkin, follow the general rules of washing linen fabric.

– If you decide to use a stain remover, try a small amount of it on a discrete spot (reverse side, stitch, etc.). Use a Q-tip to pick a tiny amount of stain remover and apply it to the fabric. If any color remains on the Q-tip, it means the stain remover should not be used on linen. If Q-tip remains white, you’re good to go.

– If you cannot get rid of the stains, it is best to use dry-cleaning and leave it to professionals to take the best care of your linen pieces. That way, you can rest assured that any stains will be removed safely and protectively from the linen fabric.

 

By the way, if you are not sure how to take care of your linen bedding, clothing, or any other linen item, feel free to contact us atinfo@linentales.com or drop us a message on Facebook or Instagram, and we will be happy to help. 

We hope these simple tips will resolve any concerns you may have regarding linen care and wrinkling. With all this said, we invite you to embrace the natural properties of linen, even the beautiful wavy wrinkles. After all, you could say that linen is a “live” fabric as it tends to get softer and less wrinkly after every wash.

Photos by Lina Juškė

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