If you buy laundry detergent and go to the grocery store, it’s very likely that you take the same detergent you’ve been using for years every time, or you’re in the “I will take what’s on sale” category. The problem that many of us have, without even realizing it, is that in most cases we choose the wrong detergents, and the reason for this is, as always, being unaware of the types of detergents there are and the main differences between them. As a result of the wrong use of laundry detergent, either our white laundry becomes greyish, or our favorite shirt with beautiful colors becomes slightly pastel and faded.
All detergents are chemical formulations that improve the characteristics of water, but their main task is to remove dirt and stains without damaging the delicate threads of the fabric or the washing machine. In today’s post, we present all types of laundry detergents and how to use them properly.
Universal detergents contains a high proportion of grinding agents, and is suitable for all types of fibers except wool and silk. The use of universal detergents is recommended for washing temperatures between 20 and 95 degrees, and since they contain a high concentration of bleach, they can only be used for washing white laundry. Using universal detergent when washing colored laundry is not recommended as you will irreversibly wash away the colors as well as the stains.
Detergents for colorful laundry
Detergents intended for washing colorful clothes, unlike universal detergents, contain special active substances for color care as well as agents that prevent the transfer of color from fabric to fabric during the washing cycle. We use these types of detergents for all colored fibers, except for wool and silk, due to their great sensitivity to temperature as well as to the chemical properties of detergents for colorful laundry. Detergent for colorful laundry is not recommended to be used when washing white clothes, because due to the lack of bleach and optical brighteners, laundry washed with this detergent becomes gray and loses its whiteness, so instead of a bright white, you get 50 shades of gray shirt.
Detergent for fine fabrics and wool
Silk and wool are natural materials that are most sensitive to detergents as well as water temperature. Apart from the fact that there are special washing cycles for them available on washing machines, there are also special types of detergents whose task is to wash stains and refresh clothes made of these materials, but also the most important – to protect them.
Detergents used for washing silk and wool do not contain enzymes, which are the main ingredients against stains in universal detergents and detergents for colorful laundry. The reason for this is that enzymes break down the proteins to remove them from laundry, but as wool and silk are fabrics of animal origin that consist of proteins, using enzymes can irreversibly damage those fibers.
These detergents are used at much lower washing temperatures, up to 40 degrees, because both fibers are sensitive to high temperatures. Those detergents contain a very high proportion of foaming active substances that create a protective layer against strong mechanical stress on the fibers during washing. Considering that these detergents are extremely mild and do not contain bleaches,so it is not recommended to use them with other laundry because they will not be able to wash stains from standard fabrics such as the cotton.
In addition to the three types of detergents already mentioned, there are other options that we use when washing special fabrics, but you can only find them in specialized shops for detergents and maintenance. There are detergents for:
- Washing curtains
- Clothes with feathers and functional clothing
Now that you have learned what types of detergents there are and perhaps found out the answer to the question why your bedding turned gray in the wash, you now know which detergents to use to keep your clothes sparkling white or brightly colored for as long as possible. If you are still not sure how to use these detergents, you can always bring your laundry to our laundromat and we will thoroughly wash it for you and prepare it for new wear.