Here’s What the Laundry Symbols on Your Garment Tags Mean
Who here hates laundry day? Washing clothes is not really anyone’s favorite. Not only is it exhausting, you also cannot do it with little effort or care because not washing your clothes can damage your favorite pieces.
One of the best tips that you can learn is to pay attention to the symbols on every clothing label. These symbols are there for a reason—to tell you how best to care for the specific garment to maintain it.
Before we go into what the icons mean, we will be covering a little on how the laundry labels came to be.
What are laundry labels?
Symbols on garment labels are part of the clothing manufacturing standards since 1963 when GINETEX, the International Association for Textile Care Labelling, was founded in Paris. In the same year, GINETEX made clothing care symbols that have since became the international standard.
Before GINETEX, a big portion of manufacturers wrote care instructions in the languages of the respective countries where it was produced and sold. A few years later, the fashion world grew and several countries manufactured and exported more garments internationally. This was what prompted the creation of a worldwide standard for garment labels so that every consumer, no matter what language they speak, can read the labels. Thus, GINETEX came out with care symbols that is used universally and can be easily understood.
The problem is, a lot of us do not actually remember or understand what the symbols mean in the first place, which is why we will be looking at the meaning behind these laundry symbols
This is the symbol for washing that we commonly see. This symbol shows the highest washing temperature which is indicated by the temperature number in the bucket symbol. The symbol with lines below the water-filled bucket means the garment requires a mild wash, and two lines means very mild wash. If the symbol has a hand going into the bucket, it means the garment should be hand washed. If the symbol has an X, it means that the garment should not be washed.
Washing using bleach is usually indicated with a triangle. If it is a simple triangle, it means that you can use any type of bleach. If the triangle has two diagonal lines inside of it, it means you can only use non-chlorine bleach. If the triangle has an X inside of it, it means the garment is unsuitable for bleaching.
The drying symbol is indicated with a square. If there are two dots inside the square, this indicates that you can put the garment in a dryer with no issue. If it is just one dot, it means that you have to use a mild setting on your tumble dryer, and if there is an X inside of a circle within the square, it means you should not tumble dry.
If the drying symbol has a line in it, you should dry it naturally, whether line dry or flat dry. Line dry is indicated with a vertical line inside the square, whereas a Flat dry is indicated with a horizontal line inside the square.
The iron symbol is aptly indicated with a symbol of an iron. If this symbol has three dots inside of it, you can use a high heat setting on the garment. If there are only two dots, use a medium heat setting, and a low temperature with one dot. If there is an X on the symbol, it means that you shouldn’t iron the garment.
Dry Cleaning symbols
Last is the Professional Cleaners symbol, which means the garment needs to be dry cleaned. If the clothing you have has a circle symbol indicated on the tag, it means that the garment needs to be dry cleaned by a professional. If the symbol has an X on the other hand, it means that you shouldn’t dry clean the garment. If the circle was a W in it, that indicates that you can have it wet cleaned by a professional.