How to Care For Your Cashmere Sweater
A staple that will last for years, cashmere sweaters are a wardrobe essential that’s worth investing in. The fluffy fibers (taken from the hair of cashmere and pashmina goats) feel luxuriously soft to the touch and get even softer with each wear.
For a cozy night in, a fitted cashmere turtleneck like this one from Reformation is great for layering over a shirt and jeans. If you’re a fan of crew necks, this relaxed ribbed option from Lafayette 148 New York is a winner.
As winter temperatures drop, a good cashmere sweater will keep you warm and stylish. It’s a versatile staple that can be dressed up for a night out or worn with jeans for a casual look. However, the delicate fabric requires special care to prevent damage and keep it looking new season after season.
Whether or not your cashmere sweater is machine washable depends on the label. If it’s marked “dry clean only,” you’ll need to visit the dry cleaner, but if you see the words “hand wash” or “machine wash” on the tag, you can wash it at home. Hand-washing your cashmere is a gentler alternative to using the washer’s spinning action, which can put stress on fibers and cause them to stretch or lose their shape.
A few simple gadgets can also help you maintain the condition of your cashmere sweaters, including a sweater comb and steamer. The comb gently gets rid of pills (tiny fibrous build-ups) and smoothes the surface of your sweater, while the steamer provides a controlled way to release wrinkles and deodorize in-between washes.
Also, avoid rubbing your cashmere against rough surfaces like your purse or desk. This can result in snagging and pilling, which can quickly ruin the look of your sweater. Instead, use a lint tape or electric fabric shavers designed specifically for this purpose to remove unwanted fuzzballs.
No one can resist slipping into a cashmere sweater on a chilly fall day or snuggling into a comfy hoodie on a brisk winter night. But, like any wool garment, the material requires special care, particularly when it comes to washing. Fortunately, it’s not that difficult to keep your cashmere soft and silky.
Before you wash, check the care label on your Cashmere Sweater garment to see if there are any specific instructions. If there are, follow them exactly. For example, the label might instruct you to only wash the piece with cold water and a gentle, cashmere-safe detergent (check out our favorite laundry products here).
If there aren’t any specific instructions, you can simply fill a tub or sink with lukewarm water and add a load’s worth of your chosen laundry liquid. Then, dip your cashmere piece(s) in the mixture and swirl them gently around for a minute or so to ensure they’re soaked through. Next, gently squeeze the excess water from the piece (don’t wring it!), and then roll it in a dry towel to press out any remaining water.
The Laundress recommends using a sweater comb to get rid of any pilling or fuzz, and a steamer to help release any wrinkles from your piece after it’s washed. They also advise to avoid putting your cashmere in the dryer, which can stretch the fibers and cause it to shrink.
When washing cashmere, it’s important to read the Cashmere Sweater label carefully and follow the instructions. Some sweaters can be machine washed, while others require to be hand washed or even dry cleaned (via John Smedley Blog). You should also avoid using fabric softener, as it damages the natural fibers and slows down the wicking process of the wool.
Fill a sink, tub, or basin with cold water (but not ice cold) and add a small amount of detergent that’s specifically made for wool and cashmere. Let your sweater soak for 30 minutes before dumping out the soapy water and rinsing it in cold, clean water. Do this several times until all the soap is out of your sweater.
The best way to dry your sweater is on a flat drying rack. Avoid hanging it up or putting it in the dryer, as these methods may stretch your cashmere and pull it out of shape. If you don’t have a drying rack, you can roll your sweater up in a towel sleeping bag-style, and gently press out the excess water.
Once your cashmere is dry, it’s important to store it properly. Keeping your sweaters in cotton storage bags will help prevent them from attracting moths, which can eat through the natural fibers and damage your sweater. Adding a cedar block to your sweater drawer is another effective moth-prevention tool.
Cashmere is a very delicate material, and it can get even softer with each wear. However, it is important to not overwash your sweater or use fabric softeners because this can damage the fibers. Instead, allow your sweater to become softer naturally over time by wearing it throughout the day with minimal wear and tear.
A great way to dress up a cashmere sweater is to pair it with a skirt or pants. This creates a more formal look and is perfect for work or other occasions where you want to dress up. You can also add stylish accessories to this outfit to make it more elegant.
You can also wear a cashmere sweater with jeans or leggings for a more casual look. This is a great option for everyday wear and can be dressed up with a nice pair of shoes. Try wearing a pair of lace-up boots or heels to really make your outfit stand out.
When shopping for a cashmere sweater, it is important to consider the fit. Many brands make their cashmere sweaters in a wide range of sizes, so you should be able to find one that fits well. You can also look for a sweater that is slightly oversized for a more relaxed look. In addition, you should also look for a sweater that is made from high-quality materials.