General Care Of Towels - A Brief Summary

  • Washing a towel at 70℃ acts as a thermal disinfectant eliminating most bacteria.
  • White towels may be brightened slightly by using SPARING amounts of Bleach.
  • Always wash coloured towels seperately. Coloured towels must not be bleached using Chlorine bleach as this will cause the towel to change colour, usually an orangery, rusty colour.
  • You do not need to iron your towels as ironing usually flattens the loops on the towel. The best towels have a soft fluffy handle with upright loops . A cool iron setting is highly recommended.
  • If a towel is stained, rather spot out the stain with a recommended stain remover.
  • For tumble drying, it is not recommended to exceed 60℃. This temperature is sufficient to restore the pile and maintain a soft fluffy towel at all times.
  • When using fabric softener use it sparingly and follow the manufacturer’s minimum dosing guidelines. Too much softener will cause the absorbency of your towel to be hampered resulting in a greasy feel when drying yourself.
  •  Some hair dye and other beauty therapy chemicals contain Benzyl Peroxide that can cause some colors to be destroyed resulting in a discolored towel

Care for Dyed Towels

Problems can occur with dyed towels if precautions are not taken. Please note that no absolute colour fastness of dyes exists. Even though Nortex uses the best dyes available, a small amount of un-fixed dye remains in the fabric, called excess dye, which will be eliminated during the initial washes without the original colour  fading. It should, therefore, be remembered that deeper and bright coloured towels should be washed and dried separately. Dyed towels should not be treated with bleach and should be thoroughly rinsed after washing to remove the remaining detergent and excess dye.

Care for towels when Machine Washing

The following elements increase wear and tear as well as shrinkage of towels during the washing cycle, and it is therefore advisable to determine whether some or all are absolutely necessary.

  • Increased Loading
  • Longer Cycles
  • Stronger Detergents
  • Higher Temperatures
  • Bleaching Components

The purpose of using softeners is to improve the softness of your towel and increase the bulkiness. They are best used when your towels are feeling a little harsh, but it is paramount to note that they can have adverse effects, such as:

·         They do make towels less absorbent.

·         Weakening of the fabric of towels, shortening the life of the product.

So the bottom line is…….Use softener sparingly.

While chlorine is a great stain remover and whitener, it can significantly reduce the life of your towels by damaging and weakening the fibers. Instead, use an Oxygen-based bleach/whitener or spot-treat the stains.

Always make it a habit to wash new towels. New products have many unwanted chemicals and debris from the manufacturing process, plus you don’t know where they’ve been since coming off the assembly line. Also, towels are shipped tightly packed in bales to distributors, and the compression removes the feel and fluffiness. Always wash new towels before their first use.

Care for towels During Drying

Over drying in the tumble drier has a negative impact on towels so large, that it can initiate the body of the towel to deteriorate prior to the actual longevity of a brand new towel. Over drying has two effects

1)      Greying

2)      Hardness/harshness of the towel.

When manufacturing a towel, the yarn is woven in such a way to form loops on both sides of the surface. These loops also known as pile, increase the surface area and determine the rate and amount of water absorption.

A generally accepted shrinkage for terry towels is between 7%. Nortex Towels will shrink on average between 2 – 4%, as we pride ourselves on using a unique process which leads to little or no shrinkage at our factory.

The towel greying effect can also be attributed to over drying towels in the tumble dryer. Calculated on a bone dry weight, the optimum moisture content of a finished towel is 4-6%. Drying towels below this stipulated percentage will lead to towels exhibiting poor qualities with regards to feel and physical appearance. Once the tips of the terry loops (pile) are bone dry, they do not have any free moisture embedded that can dispel the static charge generated whilst the towel rotates in the metal drum of the tumble drier. The static generated then causes the towel to be a magnet for every particle from the airstream leading to greying. This explains why towels can be radiant and bright after washing but become dull and lifeless after drying.

Lastly always remember that it is always ideal to start drying at lower temperatures and finish off at cooler temperatures. This will allow the terry loops (pile) to slowly open up regaining their full thickness before drying has commenced. Starting the drying cycle on very hot temperatures will cause rapid drying before the terry loops (pile) float freely on the surface of the towel. As a result the towel will appear flat with a harsh feel to the touch.

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