How to Safely Wash Silk Sheets

Raw Silk
Raw Silk | Source

By Joan Whetzel

Silk Sheets can cost hundreds of dollars, and for good reason. These sheets are made from a natural fiber that is more difficult and time consuming to make than other fibers. But the result is a set of sheets that feels incredibly soft and luxurious next to the skin. As silk is easily damaged, it is often recommended that these sheets be dry-cleaned. However, they can be washed, if care is taken.

Silk Defined

Silk is usually defined as a lustrous fiber created from the filament of the silkworm cocoon. This filament is spun into a thread, from which silk fabric is woven and turned into garments or sheets. These silkworms are cultivated for the express purpose of creating silk fabric, instead of obtaining the fibers from the wild as was done originally.

General Care of Silk Sheets

These care and washing tips are general in nature. Be sure to read the label and care instructions for your silk sheets for specific information.

· Keep your heels, elbows, knees and hands from getting rough and cracked as this can cause some snagging and pilling of the silk as well as pulling fibers.

· Keep fingernails and toenails trimmed and not ragged for the same reasons as above.

· Silk sheets will shrink a bit after a few washings (3-4%). So silk sheets are made a little bit larger that actual mattress size to take this shrinkage into account.

· To clean stains on silk sheets, use Silk Spot Out (T) for spot treatment. Treat the stains right away as food and beverage stains can quickly become permanent if allowed to dry.

Washing Silk

Silk is a natural fiber. To keep it strong, avoid harsh detergents when washing your silk sheets. Those harsh detergents will break down the fibers and strip the luster out of them. Instead, use Woolite, which is for designed delicate fabrics. It cleans well and rinses out easily without causing staining or leaving soap deposits.

If you are not taking the silk sheets to the dry cleaner, wash and rinse them by hand in cool water, gently squeezing the water out of them. Lay them flat to dry on a thick cotton towel. After the first few washings by hand, you can switch to the gentle cycle in the washing machine, using cool water and Woolite. Use the spin cycle sparingly. Wait for the water to drain out of the tub and gently squeeze the excess water out of the silk sheets. Fabric softener is okay to use with silk sheets, but bleach is not.

Do not place silk sheets in the dryer as the heat will break down the fibers. Dry them flat on cotton towels, indoors. Do not dry outdoors in the sunlight as the sun causes fading. If you absolutely must iron your silk sheets, set the iron to the coolest setting, no steam, and press by quickly running the iron over the silk sheets while still slightly damp.

Resources

Wiki How.How to Wash Silk Sheets.

http://www.wikihow.com/Wash-Silk-Sheets

Silk Sheets Guide. Caring for Silk Sheets.

http://www.silksheetsguide.com/silkcare/

Simo Silk. How to Clean Silk.

http://www.simosilk.com/cleaning-silk.htm

How Products Are Made. Silk.

http://www.madehow.com/Volume-2/Silk.html

Dictionary.com. Silk.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/silk

How to Wash Silk

How to Wash Silk

Wasing Silk

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