What’s the Right Way to Sort Your Laundry?

Are you tired of dingy whites, dye-streaked socks, or your favorite shirt turning a whole new color after a trip in the washing machine? No matter what laundry store in Forest Hills or the surrounding area you go to or how many color catchers you toss in the washer, you just keep encountering the same problems.

To save your wardrobe, try sorting your laundry before washing. Ideally, you will have one laundry basket each for whites and lights, colors, and darks.

Whites and Lights

Your first load should include all whites, along with pastels like light pink, yellow, and tan. The best way to keep your whites bright is to never expose them to the small amounts of dye released when colored clothes are washed. For the best whites, pre-treat any colored or underarm stains on your whites, then use hot water.

New Items

Any time you buy a new, richly-colored piece of clothing, you need to make sure that it is colorfast. Colorfast clothes will maintain their color without fading or running. Sometimes, you have to run a new T-shirt or pair of jeans (alone!) through the wash once or twice before it becomes safely colorfast.

To test if a piece of clothing is colorfast, try spraying it with water and then blotting with a paper towel. If the paper towel comes away colored, then that item is still a color-leaking danger to your wardrobe.


Once you are sure that your brightly-colored clothing is colorfast, you can pile those hot oranges, bright reds, and deep purples in one load. While some color loss is inevitable, you can keep bright colors vibrant by turning items inside out and choosing short wash cycles.


Darks include any darker colors that can stand up to the dye in a pair of blue jeans. Clothes in this pile may be black, navy, brown, grey, or a darker shade of red. Cold water and a short cycle will help to preserve these items’ rich color. Also consider hanging them up to dry, or if you decide to use the dryer, choosing a low-temperature setting.


You’ve separated your lights, brights, and darks, and that suspiciously vibrant new T-shirt is already tumbling in the wash. Are you done? Not quite. A delicate, navy blouse and rugged blue jeans should never share a machine, no matter their color. Sorting by material means that your stronger clothes come out properly cleaned and your dainty ones emerge unscathed. For fragile items, use cold water and a gentle cycle.

Dry-Clean Only

Not every fabric can survive a pounding by the washing machine. Some of the most expensive and well-worn items in your wardrobe (such as business suits, wool sweaters, and leather jackets) are dry-clean only.

Feeling Overwhelmed?

Doing laundry the right way–the way that ensures the safety of your favorite clothes–can feel like one more time-consuming chore during your busy week. That why many New Yorkers trust Lux Dry Cleaning. Our experts know how to handle dry cleaning, alterations, and laundering for any fabric, from Ugg boots to bridal gowns.

With Lux, you don’t have to give up the time to sort your laundry and wait for the washer and dryer to wind down. We offer drop off laundry in Forest Hills, Queens County, Rego Park, and the surrounding area. Our extra-friendly team members will pick up a laundry bag from your home and deliver your spotless, neatly folded clothes right to your door. To start your first online order, visit the Lux Dry Cleaning website today or call 718-459-7770.

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