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can bras go in the washing machine

You’ve tried on all your bras (plus an adhesive bra and even going without one), but nothing feels right. You’re not sure if you can work with the bras you have or if you’ll need to buy a new one for your outfit. Sound familiar? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

In this series, we’re tackling your lingerie questions and sharing the best bras to wear for every occasion.

Next up: a popular lingerie care question. If you’ve ever wondered “Can bras go in the washing machine”, this article is for you.

Here’s what you need to know:

Can you wash bras in the washing machine?

The answer is two-fold: You can wash most bras in the washing machine, but your bras will last longer if you hand wash them.

how to hand wash bras

Machine washing your bras

Most bras can be washed in the washing machine, but not all. The washing machine can be too harsh for delicate fabrics like silk, lace, and satin, so it’s best to follow the garment’s care tag instructions exactly. If you prefer machine washing your bras, avoid using hot water, bleach, and heavy detergents and never mix your lingerie with denim or anything that isn’t within the same color family because the dye can transfer.

Always use a mesh lingerie bag – it will add an extra layer of protection for all your delicates (be sure to wash your bras and underwear in separate bags) so they don’t get snagged, ripped, or ruined in the washing machine. Also, don’t leave your lingerie soaking in the wash for a long time. A quick delicates cycle will do the trick. Lastly, be sure to hang dry your lingerie after washing it. Never ever throw your lingerie in the dryer – the heat can completely ruin lingerie. Press out the water and hang your lingerie to dry instead.

how to machine wash bras

Why handwashing is better

A good rule of thumb: the gentler you are with your bras, the longer they’ll last. Of course, it’s also important to factor in whether or not you’re wearing the right bra size (a bra that’s too small will have to do twice the work to provide some support for your bust), how often you wear your bras (do you wear the same bra everyday OR do you rotate them so you never wear the same bra two days in a row) and how often you wash your bras, too.

Bras can be expensive – no one wants to spend money on replacing damaged bras every few months. For the most part, handwashing your lingerie will keep it looking new for longer while helping to maintain its coloring and shape. Though it might take longer, handwashing is much gentler on lingerie than running it through the washing machine – and absolutely necessary for luxury lingerie and all of your favorite pieces.

Unsure how to hand wash your bras? Check out our helpful guide to hand washing lingerie here.

We Highly Recommend

Whether you’re shopping for new everyday bras or lingerie for a special occasion, it’s always a good idea to seek out a second opinion. We know how hard it is to find bras that fit well and feel good, especially when you’re doing it on your own. If you’ve ever felt unsure about your bra size or you just don’t know where to go to find good bras, it’s time to let a bra fitter help.

Many specialty lingerie boutiques offer bra fittings. Their expert bra fitters will take the pain and frustration out of bra shopping and do all the work for you. Even better, their product knowledge can save you time and money. Plus, they know where all of the best bras are hiding.

If you’ve struggled with finding bras in the right size, it’s time to make a change. Visit our specialty store locator to find a store near you and schedule an appointment.

Happy bra shopping!


How do you wash your bras? Let us know in the comments below.

Published by

Katie Donnelly

Katie Donnelly is a full-time freelance writer, content manager, and founder of Katie Rose Creative. An experienced bra fitter, Katie has helped hundreds of people shop for lingerie. Her favorite bra is the Sandrine Plunge Longline Bra.

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