Nothing is more frustrating than purchasing a new pair of trousers or a black shirt only to discover that they have faded to a drab, muted tone after a few washes.

According to experts, faded blacks are caused by warm water breaking down fibers, and while it would be easy to say that you should never wash your dark clothes, they do need to be cleaned. Multiple trips to the dry cleaners are not only inconvenient, but also costly.

If you have a dark wardrobe and want to keep it clean and sharp without fading, consider these six strategies for preserving darker apparel.

  • Use a spot treatment in between washes.

You can go four to five times without washing your clothes unless they’re filthy or you’re highly active in them. Spot-treat any minor stains or spills with a stain remover, gently blotting the affected area, and allowing it to air dry.

  • Use a cold wash cycle

Always use cold water while running a dark cycle. To help protect the fabric’s dye and fibers, use a brief, cool cycle instead of warm water.

  • Take them apart and turn them inside out.

Turning dark clothing inside out reduces friction caused by rubbing against other clothing, which can cause fibers to break. Don’t forget to zip up your jacket and secure any hooks.

  • Only wash with like colors.

Keep your lights where they belong, and your darks where they belong. Heavy goods might harm delicate clothing, but washing items of the same weight ensures that they are cleaned properly and on the right cycle.

  • Make Use Of A Specific Detergent

For cold-water loads, use a specialist detergent that can help neutralize the chlorine in tap water, which can degrade color. Because too much soap might leave a streaky residue on dark clothing, use a minimal amount of detergent.

  • Allow to air dry

When washing dark clothes, avoid using the dryer because the heat can cause them to fade. Instead, lay them flat or hang them to dry. If you must use a dryer, select the shortest cycle time and lowest temperature feasible to avoid over-drying.

  • Dryer Sheets

To remove pet hair and repel lint, use a dryer sheet. Also, remember to clear your dryer’s lint trap after each and every use.