Washing symbols

Washing symbols

How to decrypt the wash symbols

Textile conservation labeling is a very useful tool to take care of all clothes, so it is important to decipher the washing symbols before putting the washing machine.

For a long time, all garments have on the label a number of symbols that inform how to wash them, how to dry them and whether or not it is possible to iron them or use bleach.

This code of graphic symbols for the labeling of textiles is approved by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), according to the recommendations of the Groupement International pour l’Etiquetage d’Entretien des Textiles, and they are inscribed in a precise order on the labels.


Some key precisions about the symbols of the label

While there are many people who fail to follow these specifications, after this article you may decide or declines the purchase of a garment according to the symbols you see on your label.

Maybe you already have some experience shrunken, faded garments, stains dyed by other garments, wrinkles impossible to eliminate, garments that have no remedy …

Well, for washing, there are the following symbols on the label:

  • A bucket indicates that aqueous washing is allowed.
  • If the bucket is crossed out, the press cannot be wetted or washed with water.
  • If the cell carries a number inside, it indicates the maximum temperature in degrees centigrade.
  • The buckets can also present points: If there is 1 point inside the bucket, the maximum temperature is 30 °, if there are 2 points it is 40 °, if there are 3 points it is 50 °, 4 points is 60 °, 5 points is 70 ° and if there are 6 the maximum temperature can exceed 95 ° without damaging the fabric.
  • If the tray has a hand inside, it indicates that the garment must be washed by hand.
  • If the tray has a horizontal line below, it indicates that washing and bleaching can be done in a washing machine.
  • If there are two lines below the bucket, the wash program should be soft.

For the treatment with bleach, which should always be done in cold water, the indications are in a triangle:

  • If the triangle is crossed out, bleach or any other type of bleach cannot be used.
  • If the triangle is empty, any type of bleach, including bleach, can be used.
  • If the letters CL appear inside the triangle, chlorine bleach can be used.
  • If the triangle has parallel lines, any oxygen-based bleach can be used.

To pass the clothes through the dryer, the indicative of the label is a square:

  • A square with a circle indicates that the dryer can be used at normal temperature.
  • If the circle is completely filled in black, or the square is crossed out, the garment does not accept a dryer.
  • If there is 1 point in the inner circle, the dryer must be used at a low temperature.
  • If there are 2 points on the inner circle, the temperature may be high.
  • If there is a line below the dryer symbol, the drying program for delicate or cold clothes should be used.
  • If a square or curved line appears in the square, drying must be done outdoors, without a dryer.
  • When the square has diagonal lines in a corner, it should be dried outdoors and in the shade.
  • When there are 3 vertical lines in the square, the garment should be dried outdoors and on hangers, smoothing by hand.

The symbols of dry cleaning, on the other hand, are represented by a circle and the inner letters represent the solvent that the garment admits.

Consider each of these recommendations on labeling to preserve the textiles before taking the clothes to the laundromat, so you ensure you properly separate the garments and choose the washing and drying programs indicated to take care of them.

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