Every year we spend more money than we’d like to admit on gear. Knowing how to properly care for the expensive stuff that cares for us is important to understand. Here’s a quick rundown on three categories: down, technical shells, and base layers.
The wisdom of the down ages is to stay away from washing, period. The thought is that washing down prematurely shortens the life of your down gear by negatively affecting its loft. However, with much of the new down apparel & gear, you can wash carefully, actually prolonging the life of your gear.
Most technical shells are coated in a Durable Water Repellent (DWR). Over time, this layer deteriorates due to dirt, sweat, oils, and more, resulting in a garment that needs to be washed more than people expect to keep you warm and dry.
Obviously, base layers should be washed frequently as they are the closest to your body and pick up oils, odors, and dirt. Many types of base layer materials, such as merino wool, can be worn several times between washings, so we’ve provided separate guidelines based on two categories: wool blends and synthetic blends (such as nylon, polyester, and spandex).
Wear, Rinse, Repeat 🙂