How to Care For Lycra and Elastane Activewear

It is important to treat a lycra and elastane garment properly to allow it to retain its elastic qualities as long as possible. The care is quite easy and the garments will last a long time as long as you follow all the "nevers".

  • Never use hot water when cleaning, use cool or tepid water for both washing and rinsing. Hand-washing is best to prevent excessive wringing and stretching. If using a washing machine, place the spandex garments in a mesh lingerie bag and use the gentle cycle.
  • Never use fabric softener or dryer sheets. Most detergents are safe to use on spandex but you should skip the fabric softener or any combination detergent/fabric softener product. Fabric softener leaves a residue on spandex that can dull the finish and attract bacteria that causes excessive odor.
  • Never use chlorine bleach to whiten or remove stains from any fabric containing spandex as it will destroy the fibres. 
  • Never place any lycra garments in a hot clothes dryer. Hang to drip dry away from direct heat and sun or dry flat. If quicker drying is necessary, use a low temperature on a clothes dryer and check the garment frequently.
  • Never use dry cleaning for garments that contain lycra. If you have clothes that are a blend of fibers and contain spandex, lycra or elastane and are labeled as dry clean only, a professional cleaner will know how to handle them properly. 
  • Never iron clothes that are made of 100 percent lycra fabrics.
  • Foiled fabrics should only be hand washed in cool water, to prolong the life of the sparkle.

How to Remove Stains and Odors from  Lycra and Elastine Clothes

It is particularly important to treat oily stains as soon as possible because they can be difficult to remove. 

To remove strong odors from exercise clothes that contain lycra, fill a sink or bucket with cool water and add one cup of baking soda.

Allow the clothes to soak overnight. Then wash as usual or rinse with cool water and dry in a breezy spot.