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You have finally secured yourself an authentic piece of techwear clothing and now you’re wondering what is the best way in which you can take care of it.

This handy guide will give you the know how to take care of your most prized techwear possessions.

How to Read Laundry Symbols | Real Simple

Image credit: realsimple.com

The tag on every single article of clothing is one of the most important aspects of said clothing. Why, you ask? Well for starters, the designer of said clothing usually puts their branding on the tag.

The wash tag is even more important than the actual branding of the designer in which you acquired these clothes from.

 Let’s dive into these symbols and what they mean regarding washing and drying your techwear.


Common symbols on tags

Let’s start with the circle symbol. If any of your techwear contains this circle, it is meant to be DRY CLEAN ONLY. The letter within the circle tells the dry cleaner what chemical to use so as not to damage the piece of clothing. The circle with the giant X through it means NO DRY CLEANING EVER.

This next one refers to ironing your fabric. The iron by itself means the clothing can withstand any temperature. A single dot in the iron is meant for delicates: i.e., silk and wool. Two dots in the iron are synthetics. Three dots are for linen and cloth. The three lines below the iron symbol means you can use the steam function on your iron. A giant X through the steam lines means DO NOT STEAM. The giant X through the iron means, DO NOT IRON.

Even though this symbol looks like the dry clean symbol, it is not one in the same. There is a square surrounding the circle, which means the item of clothing can be thrown in the dryer and tumble dried. The dots within the circle within the square are meant for the temperature setting on the dryer. One dot means low temperature, two dots mean medium temperature, and three dots is for high temperature. If you once again see the giant X through the circle and square, DO NOT DRY this item. 

If you see the hand in what looks like a tub of water, it means HAND WASH the item or put it in the delicate cycle for your washer, which is usually 40°C/104°F, or lower. Hand washing is typically used for more delicate items like silk or cashmere, because hand washing doesn’t result in snagging or shrinking. The twisted symbol means you can ring the wet item out and the giant X means DO NOT WRING ITEM.

The tub with water symbol means the piece of clothing can be thrown into the washer. The dots refer to temperature of water. One dot means 30°C. Two dots mean 40°C. That number increases by 10° per dot. Except when there are six dots, it means 95°C. The number inside functions in the same way. The number 30 means the article can be washed at or below 30°C and so and so forth. The lines below the tub refer to what sort of spin cycle can be used. One line means the spin cycle should be reduced and two lines means reduce the spin cycle even further. A giant X through the tub means DO NOT DRY.

Full list of symbols on tags

Free Wash Care Symbols - Labels SAImage courtesy of labelssa.co.za

Now that you have been taken through the wonderful journey of tag knowledge, you can go forth and spread the gospel of tag-dom to all your friends and family. Now let’s get into the specifics for washing and drying your pieces of techwear clothing.

Washing and drying techwear

You may be wondering how water repellent technology laden clothing is meant to be washed, and we are going to detail that right now.

Now, let’s follow some easy steps:

  1. Remove all straps and buckles: Typically, most techwear comes with detachable straps or buckles. Remove them! The metal that could be incorporated on these straps could be scratched and damaged from tumble drying. There are really no reasons to wash straps and buckles, unless you somehow got them dirty. In that case, hand washing, and hand drying might be the best course of action.
  2. Turn clothing inside out: you will see the breathable fabric from the inside of your product and turning the clothes inside out will protect the interior pockets from deforming.
  3. Wash in warm water and low tumble dry: this is the easiest and last step. According to what your tag says, most pieces of techwear, especially those with GORE-TEX, use a warm water cycle and dry on a low setting. See that you check your tag and reference this article when wanting to know how to properly take care of your item.
  4. Should the waterproof technology not be reactivated through washing, you might need to reapply a layer of durable water repellent (DWR). Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to reapply the DWR. Should the clothing use 3M Water Repellency or Teflon Repellency, check their websites for proper application procedures. There could be a way in which ironing, or tumble drying will reactivate the water repellency of your item but refer to the manufacturer’s specific instructions on how to accomplish this.

There you have it! Here is the breakdown for the potential steps and symbols that will allow you to keep stunning in your techwear.











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