Why should we use bed sheets

Washing sheets: 6 mistakes we all make

Washing clothes always looked so easy at Grandma's. You throw a few items into the drum, add a little detergent, select a program and you're done: The result is soft, well-smelling, crease-free and clean laundry. With Grandma, however, it only looked so easy because the woman is a real professional and has acquired valuable knowledge and tricks through years of experience!

But you have to get there first and, over time, learn what deficits you have yourself. If the laundry stinks after washing, if your favorite items fade or become hard, it is mostly our own fault. You can also go astonishingly wrong with the washing of bed linen. So that you don't have to make every mistake yourself, we'll tell you what can go wrong and how to do it right.

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Video by Jane Schmitt

Mistake # 1: washing too hot

When it comes to bed linen, the rumor persists that it should be washed at least at 60 degrees. Otherwise not all germs would be killed. This is considered out of date. Modern washing machines manage to clean the laundry completely even at low temperatures. First and foremost, it depends on the material at how many degrees bed linen can be washed. Color or pattern also play a role.

At how many degrees should you wash bed linen?

For colored or patterned bed linen, 40 degrees are recommended to protect the colors and patterns. If you sweat heavily at night, you can also add a disinfectant to your laundry (order here from Amazon) * so that all germs are really eliminated despite the low washing temperature.
White bed linen does not necessarily have to be cooked either. With a heavy-duty detergent, white laundry will be clean even at 40 degrees.

A look at the label reveals whether the bed linen can also be washed at 60 degrees. Most often this is the case with terrycloth, beaver, linen, cotton and many microfibers. Satin, seersucker and silk, on the other hand, must not be washed with hot water.

At temperatures above 90 degrees, laundry does not actually have to be washed at all. Even if you could, this would put a lot of strain on the material. For the sake of the environment, your wallet and the durability of the fabric, you should avoid hot laundry. Germs and bacteria usually die at over 60 degrees.

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Mistake # 2: Wash too infrequently

Bed linen is quickly forgotten, and this fabric comes into contact with our skin for around eight hours every day. Since we lose body fluids, hair and flakes of skin at night, bed linen is quickly soiled. Our body heat and night sweats also create a warm, humid climate that creates ideal conditions for bacteria and germs. Mites can then also spread and trigger allergies in us.

How often should one change the bed linen?

In general, it is recommended that bed linen be changed every two weeks. But for many of us this recommendation does not apply at all. There are some cases in which the bed linen should be changed every week (!):

  • When pets sleep with you in bed.
  • When you sweat profusely.
  • When you are sick or have just recovered.
  • If you have a house dust allergy.
  • When the bedding is used in a baby cot.
  • If you smoke yourself, or if you are frequently in a smoky environment.
  • If you work in the restaurant business.
  • When you sleep naked.

Ultimately, of course, everyone decides how often the bed linen is washed according to their own preferences. However, these points help as a guide.

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Mistake # 3: Using the wrong detergent

Many people use one detergent for everything. That is definitely not enough. Heavy-duty detergents should be used for white bed linen. This contains bleach, which ensures that the laundry stays white and does not get a gray haze. Colorful or patterned bed linen, on the other hand, would fade if you used heavy duty detergent. It is better to use colored detergents here. For dark bed linen, there are even special detergents for black linen (order here from Amazon) *.

The material also plays a major role in the detergent. Satin, silk, beaver and linen should be washed with mild detergent. This has a lower pH value, which protects the natural fibers. If you use a heavy-duty detergent instead, the fibers can be roughened so that they are then less soft.

Danger: You should avoid using fabric softener for bed linen. Softener can cause sensitive fibers to stick together. But fabric softener is not recommended even for cotton bed linen. It reduces the absorbency of the material, which can be problematic, especially in summer when we sweat at night.

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Mistake # 4: Improper handling of bed linen

It is best to put bed linen in the washing machine as a set. So the colors are coordinated and you wash the same material together. Coarse material can damage fine material.

If you wash the bedclothes in a set, the amount is then exactly matched to a drum. When washing clothes, an upright hand should still fit into the drum for an optimal amount. If there is not enough laundry in the drum, this wastes water and energy; if there is too much laundry in the drum, the individual items will not be rinsed properly. The laundry comes out of the washing machine dirty.

It is also important that you turn the bed linen inside out before washing it. This protects colors and patterns and the bed linen does not fade so quickly.

Another important point: the zipper. You should always close the zipper (or buttons) of the bed linen. Otherwise, the entire bed linen could get caught in a sheet and turn into a heavy ball of fabric. This can knock out during spinning and, in the worst case, lead to an imbalance in the washing machine.

The individual teeth of the zipper can also damage the fabric, which is why zips should always be closed before washing.

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Mistake # 5: The wrong program

Most modern washing machines have a special program for bed linen. This is aimed at common bed linen made of cotton or microfibers. In other words, fabrics that can be washed at 60 degrees. With older washing machines you can use the program for colored and whites for bed linen.

Sensitive bed linen made from fibers such as silk, on the other hand, should be washed in the delicates program. Modern washing machines also have their own program for silk.

Mistake # 6: You're drying wrong

You can also make a few mistakes when drying, because not all bed linen can be put in the dryer. Cotton, beaver and linen can usually be dried in the dryer. Silk, microfiber or seersucker, on the other hand, should rather be air-dried. However, there are always exceptions, which is why it is important to look at the label. Find a square with a circle in it. If this symbol with an X is crossed out, the bed linen must not be put in the dryer. If there is a point in the circle, the bed linen can be put in the dryer, but only at a low temperature.

If your bed linen can only be put in the dryer on the gentle cycle, just put some dryer balls (order here from Amazon) * in the drum. They accelerate drying and ensure soft laundry.

If you have bedding made from a material that cannot be tumble-dried, that's not a big deal. Drying takes a little longer and you need space for it, but it is environmentally friendly and materials that are not allowed in the dryer usually have a close-knit structure that dries quickly even on the clothesline.

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