We I’ll be looking at the symbols on the label of your clothe and their meaning. I’ve been reluctant to pay keen attention on the label of my clothes, until I ruined one beautiful shirt I bought, I only wore it once. Since then I always pay attention to the label on any clothe I buy.
The little laundry symbols found on clothing tags aren’t just suggestions. They’re basically your user’s manual on how to take care of your clothes or garment so it lasts as long as possible.
Ignoring these icons can leave you with shrunken, discoloured or mangled clothes.
You may have tried looking at the label on your clothe, only to see it in another language. Well, no need to worry, the idea is that once you learn the symbols, you can theoretically use them to wash clothing from any country even if you don’t speak the language.
The wash basin symbol. The wash basin icon is basically a tub or bucket with water in it. If you see it on the label, it means that your clothing item can be washed. If you see a bucket of water with an x through it, that means the garment can’t be washed — it’s dry clean only.
On some you’ll see dots or number in the bucket, it tells you the temperature of the water you should use to wash it.
A label that says 30 means a water temperature of 86 degrees Fahrenheit, 40 means 104 degrees Fahrenheit, 60 means 140 degrees Fahrenheit and 95 means 203 degrees Fahrenheit.
And if it’s the dots, one dot means you can wash with cold water, two dots means warm wash, three dots and above means hot water wash.
The bucket symbol has more signs to it, like a line(s) under the bucket, and also a hand in the bucket. The photo above will show you more symbols with a little explanation for your understanding.
Bleaching. The bleaching symbol comes in triangle shape. Many people just assume, if a garment is white, it can be bleached. Hold up there, buddy. Make sure to check the label first.
An open triangle means you can go ahead and use bleach, but a triangle with lines through it means you should use non-chlorine bleach. A triangle that is crossed out(x) means bleach of any sort is a bad idea and should be avoided.
Ironing symbol. The ironing symbol just looks like an iron. If you see the iron symbol, it means you can iron the clothe, and if you see the iron symbol with an x on it, it means you shouldn’t iron it.
It doesn’t stop there, if you see dots in the iron, it tells you the temperature at which you should set your pressing iron.
Lines are important, too. Lines coming from the bottom of the iron icon means that you can steam the clothe or garment. Lines crossed out below the iron means the garment can’t be steamed.
Drying. The typical drying symbol is a circle inside a square, which basically looks like a dryer. Sometimes, the ideal dryer setting is indicated with lines below the dryer. If you see the dryer symbol crossed out, don’t put your clothing item in the dryer. It may shrink or be damaged by the heat. Preferably you dry them outside to receive air. Always take note of the dots, they serve the same purpose like the ones we talked about earlier.
Dry cleaning. The dry cleaning symbol is a circle, not everyone can afford to have a dry cleaning machine at home, what we’ll advice you do is to take your garment to a professional who knows this stuff inside and out, make sure the laundry attendant understands how you’ll want it to be treated, based on the instruction on the label, but just in case or for knowledge purposes: A circle means “dry clean.” A letter inside indicates what type of solvent the garment needs.
No letter or an “A” means any type of solvent works.
“P” means any type of solvent works. (The “P” stands for “perchloroethylene,” a widely used solvent.)
“F” means petroleum solvent only. (The “F” stands for “flammable.”)
A circle with a diagonal line on the outside means dry clean with no steam.
A circle with an x through it means do not dry clean.
For now, these are the basic or universal symbols you’ll be seeing on your garment. The pictures above will give you more insight, just in case you see a strange symbol.
If this article was helpful to you, please do share with others, and if you have any question, feel free to ask.