Bleach; some love them and some loathe them. When you think about it, bleach has become an essential laundry product especially when you have a lot of white clothing items. However, one wrong move and bleach can ruin your favorite white shirt you usually wear to work. The guide below can tell you what you need to know about bleach, how they work, and how to properly do your laundry with bleach.
What does bleach do to clothes
In a nutshell, bleach contains oxidizing agents or chemicals that can remove colors and stains from clothes. There are several types of bleach and the most widely-used ones are chlorine bleach that contains sodium hypochlorite, oxygen bleach with hydrogen peroxide, and bleaching powder containing calcium hypochlorite. Most household bleach contains sodium hypochlorite which is derived from salt.
These chemicals remove colors and stains by breaking the bonds of a chromophore, or atoms containing color, and change the molecules so they no longer have color or reflect colors visible to the eyes. Other than removing stains on clothes, bleach act as a great disinfectant and can clean your floors, counters, and even swimming pools.
The correct way to bleach your clothes
Bleaching clothes doesn’t have to be scary and intimidating. Follow these simple tips so you won’t ruin your favorite white clothing and rid those stubborn stains.
- Separate your whites and your colored clothes. Avoid including your delicates like lace undergarments or shrinkable cotton shirts and only include those that can be safely washed with hot water. It is recommended to look at the label and the washing instruction of each item to avoid any mishaps.
- Next, measure out your bleach. Be sure to read the manufacturer’s instruction as adding the wrong amount of bleach can be disastrous. Brands like Clorox recommends only adding ½ a cup of bleach to every load. Larger machines and larger loads require more bleach. Use 1 cup of bleach and add it before you put the clothes in the wash water.
- Pour the detergent to the water first before adding the clothes and the bleach. For machines with no bleach dispenser, add the bleach five minutes after the washing process has begun. If your machine has a bleach dispenser, simply fill the container up to the maximum fill line.
- When washing clothes by hand, wear gloves so you don’t end up with rough, scaly, bloody hands. Separate the washing water first and add ½ cup of bleach into the water. Afterwards, pour the solution little by little to another basin containing your clothes.
- To treat a specific spot, first identify the type of stain. Coffee, juice, and grass stains can easily be removed with bleach. Afterwards, mix a bleach solution by combining 1 part bleach to 30 parts water. Mix well and clean the stain spot with a damp cloth or sponge.
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