How to Hand Wash Wool
Hand washing is often considered to be the safest method of washing wool accessories because it offers complete control over how the material is handled. While the newer washing machines today offer settings and cycle that mimic hand washing, a good old bucket of water is still the preferred method for many wool lovers.
- Fill a bowl with water that is just warm to the touch. As you may know, wool can shrink in very high temperatures, so it’s always best to use lukewarm water rather than hot. If you’re worried that this will affect the cleaning process, don’t be – many laundry detergents are designed to work in cooler temperatures as manufacturers strive to encourage homeowners to wash at lower temperatures to conserve energy.
- Add laundry detergent to the warm water. It’s best to use a laundry detergent that is specifically designed for wool, like Persil Silk & Wool, or that is designed for delicate fabrics. Follow the directions on the label for accurate dosing advice. If using a powdered detergent, use your hands to agitate the water and encourage the grains to dissolve.
- Add your woolly hat or scarf to the bowl, and gently swirl it around in the soapy water, ensuring it becomes well-saturated in all areas. Be very gentle as you don’t want to stretch the wool. If your hat or scarf is stained, pay particular attention to this area, gently massaging the soapy water into the fabric, helping to lift the stain. You can leave your hat or scarf in the water to soak for a while, which will allow the stains to loosen.