Hosieries can be delicate, with even those in the highest of deniers prone to wear and tear, color fading, and decreasing elasticity. Having said that, proper care for your favorite stockings is not as daunting as it may seem, whether you own knee high hosiery or thigh-high ones. So, without further ado, here’s how to properly care for your hosiery:
Handling Your Hosiery
First things first: you should know how to handle your hosieries right the way. Here are some tips that you need to keep in mind:
Always Trim Your Fingernails and Toenails
Before handling your hosiery, make sure you’ve cut your fingernails short to keep any of them from potentially doing any damage to your precious stockings. Do the same for your toenails so that they won’t get in the way every time you wear and take off your hosiery. Make sure to also cut your fingernails and toenails evenly because hosieries can easily snag on jagged or chipped nails.
Moisturize Your Hands and Legs
Believe it or not, the roughness of dry skin can damage your hosiery little by little. Indeed, your skin can rub too much on the nylon and eventually pull threads or even cause laddering. To prevent this, moisturize both your hands and legs with the appropriate skin products. This will keep your skin smooth and supple. This way, your hands and feet won’t have rough, uneven spots or calluses that can damage hosieries in the long run.
Remove Your Hand Accessories
A common mistake women make when handling hosiery is doing so while wearing accessories such as rings. If you do this, you risk having your hosiery catching on said accessory, causing small holes or ripping the fabric. Don’t make the same mistake by always taking off your hand accessories every time you handle your hosiery.
Putting On Your Hosiery
There’s an art to putting on your hosiery correctly such that its integrity is preserved for the long term. Here’s the right way of doing things:
- Make sure to do everything specified in the previous section. Alternatively, put on a pair of gloves to keep your fingernails or accessories from snagging on the hosiery.
- Roll up your hosiery completely, from the toe to the waistband.
- Insert one foot gently into one leg of the rolled-up hosiery. Then, carefully unroll the hosiery leg up to where the top band is supposed to sit comfortably, whether that’s on your knee or your waist. Take your time and do this gently, especially if your hosiery has back seams or patterns. Do the same for the other leg.
- Once you’ve pulled your hosiery over both legs, carefully stand up and delicately smooth out or straighten the fit of the top band. Avoid overstretching your hosiery while doing this.
For hosieries with waistbands, avoid just yanking at the top if you want to roll them up higher. Instead, roll the hosiery back down to your knees first. Then, slowly start pulling the hosiery back up, making sure that you stretch more of the fabric to get the hosiery where you want it to be.
Taking Off Your Hosiery
There’s also a fine art to taking off your hosiery, and the steps are as follows:
- Again, make sure that your nails are trimmed and that you’ve taken off your accessories. You may also opt to put on gloves instead.
- Sit somewhere sturdy and comfortable.
- Roll down your hosiery carefully from the top. Then, work on rolling it down on each leg. Take your time doing this and don’t pull on it at any point.
- Once you’ve rolled down your hosiery a little past ankle level, slowly and carefully remove them from your feet.
As with putting on your hosiery, the key in taking them off is to do so gently and delicately, which means you need to be patient during the process.
Washing Your Hosiery
No matter how expertly you put on and take off your hosiery, you can ruin it just as easily if you make even a single mistake while washing them. That being said, you can either hand wash them or machine wash them, as long as you handle them with care. Here are some step-by-step guides to help you out:
Hosiery Hand Washing Instructions
- Get a bucket and fill it with cool water.
- Mix in either some baby shampoo or any delicate liquid laundry detergent. This is because regular laundry detergents are oftentimes too harsh. Also, regular detergents may contain chemicals that can cause the hosieries’ colors to fade or compromise the fabric’s integrity.
- Gently place all similarly colored hosieries into the bucket. Swirl them softly in the water, then massage them gently with your hands. Give the soles a bigger squeeze as dirt normally accumulates there.
- Let your hosieries soak in the water-shampoo mixture for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Give the hosieries a final massage.
- Rinse your hosieries well using fresh cold water.
Machine Washing Instructions
- Make sure you have a wash bag for delicates or a mesh washing bag on hand.
- Put your hosieries into the appropriate wash bag.
- Fill the washing machine with cold water and mix in some delicate liquid laundry detergent.
- Wash your hosieries using the “Gentle” or “Handwash” option.
Drying Your Hosiery
Whether hand or machine washed, never dry your hosieries by wringing them. Doing so will only stretch the fabric and affect the elasticity of your hosiery. Neither should you tumble dry them as the heat can damage the fabric of your favorite pairs or even cause them to shrink. Instead, give the stockings a light squeeze and drape them over a clothes rack for air-drying.
Storing Your Hosiery
For storage, make sure you have a drawer reserved only for your hosieries. This way, you can keep them away from clothing items that have hooks and similar accouterments, which can onto your hosieries and cause holes, rips, or tears.
Also, make sure that you’re storing your hosieries in such a way that they aren’t becoming entangled with one another. Should they indeed become a jumbled mess, attempting to pull them apart from each other can cause them to ladder or become misshapen.
Follow the steps above, and you’ll find that your hosiery will be less likely to tear, ladder, or stretch unnecessarily. As long as you handle these garments with care, your favorite stockings are sure to stay in good condition for a long time, especially if you stick to these pointers religiously.