July 26, 2019

The light pitter-patter of rain on your roof, a humid afternoon, cool and windy nights and a greener garden are all signs of something Indian cities can’t escape – the beautiful season of monsoon. No matter which part of the country you live in, you will have rainy days ringing your doorbell by mid-July.

While everyone loves a little respite from the terrible summer heat, monsoon also brings with its own share of laundry troubles. If you fail to take care of your clothes and shoes during monsoon, you will end up ruining them.

Here are some cardinal rules of storage and laundry that you must follow for your clothes during monsoon.

Use Proper Washing Methods

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While you should always follow washing instructions specific to different fabrics, monsoon requires special care for your clothes. Most kinds of cotton, georgettes, and chiffons tend to absorb moisture quite easily. They also turn frizzy and retain a damp smell after washing. Here’s what you should follow to avoid destroying your precious tops and dresses:

• Use scented detergents, preferably liquid ones.

• Add baking soda or vinegar to your clothes while washing them. Baking soda is a natural disinfectant and will neutralize bad odour.

• Try to wash wet clothes as soon as possible. Leaving them unattended for long will invite fungi and bacteria, which makes them smelly and musty later.

Dry Clothes Properly

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Monsoon can sometimes mean days without sunshine. Whenever you wash your clothes during the rainy season, don’t leave them to dry on your terrace, balcony or porch. Drying clothes inside your house can result in a lot of humidity in your house, which is both unhealthy and inconvenient. It will also result in your clothes being only partially dry. To make sure you don’t end up leaving your clothes damp:

• Place a bag of salt or rice in the room where your clothes dry. Salt absorbs moisture and keeps the air of your room dry, which makes it easier for your clothes to dry faster.

• Always use the dryer of your washing machine before hanging your clothes to dry. Also, use hangers whenever possible as clothes that are spread out dry faster.

• Light incense sticks or scented candles in the room where you hang clothes to dry. Their smoke will prevent your clothes from getting a musty smell while drying.

Storage Methods Are Important

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During monsoon, even the best of closets tend to become home to moisture. The damp walls of your closet risk fungi infesting your clothes and giving them an unpleasant smell. To make sure you don’t have a musty odour in your favourite pair of jeans:

• Place dried neem leaves in your closet. This age-old trick keeps all kinds of microbes away from your clothes, keeping them fresh all the time.

• Place a muslin bag filled with camphor in your closet. Camphor not only has a pleasant smell but also absorbs moisture. This will guarantee that your clothes remain fungus-free during monsoon.

• Place naphthalene balls between your clothes. Naphthalene keeps insects and termite away from your closet. It also prevents the growth of microbes on or around your clothes and helps your closet smell fresh.

If you love your footwear, monsoon might have you worried about them. Be it leather, cloth, or suede, shoes and sandals are not friends with moisture. While footwear is more difficult to manage than clothes, they need as much care and attention. Different shoes are made of different materials, some of which might get ruined if they are exposed to even a little bit of water. If you want to avoid destroying that perfect pair of winter boots you possess, it’s best to take care of them carefully.

Clean Footwear Only As They Should Be Cleaned

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Many of us tend to take footwear cleansing lightly. We are sometimes lazy enough to ignore dirty shoes and sandals. During monsoon, however, this laziness can cost you dearly.

If you possess leather shoes or sandals

• Try not to wear them during monsoon. If you have to, avoid getting them wet in the rain.

• Polish your leather shoes with wax-polish of the same colour. You can approach a specialist who will do that for you, but investing in a good shoe polish is never a bad idea.

• Always remove stains with wax-based cleaners. These are easily available at local markets or footwear brands’ showrooms.

• Use gentle foams and balms on stains that are particularly difficult to manage.

• Store your leather items in a breathable bag, preferably made out of muslin. Plastic bags are the worst storage choices during monsoon since they do not let moisture escape from your shoes.

• Try to keep camphor, naphthalene or salt in the cabinet where you store shoes to absorb moisture.

For suede shoes

• Use wax polishes that are designed for suede.

• Use a slightly damp cloth to remove particularly difficult stains, but be careful enough never to wet your shoes while cleaning.

• Use a hairdryer to dry your shoes even if they are slightly moist.

For all other footwear, rubbing a partially melted wax candle on them can make them resistant to a little water. Note that this does not make your shoes completely waterproof, but is only to keep droplets off your footwear.

Storage Rules For Footwear

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All footwear follows the same rules when it comes to storage methods:

• Place silica gel packets inside your shoes before locking them in your cupboard. In case you can’t find silica gel, use muslin bags filled with salt or camphor.

• Place your footwear away from walls, in a non-wooden cabinet that is at least 3 feet above the ground. This will protect them if your walls turn damp.

• Always use muslin bags or cardboard boxes to store shoes that are small. For knee-high or thigh-high boots, use support to keep them upright before storing them in a velvet or muslin bag.

Following these basic methods will ensure that you don’t end up with ruined shoes and smelly clothes during monsoon and will also make your clothes and footwear last longer. For the latest in this season’s fashion, Shop at Shoppers Stop online or at the retail store!

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