The American Cleaning Institute (ACI)

Keep Dark Clothes from Fading

black jeans

Are your black jeans, t-shirt or your little black dress not as black as they used to be? For the most part, it’s pretty inevitable that dark clothes will fade after repeated washings.

  1. There are laundry products that are formulated to lessen the fading. Be sure to read the product label and look for features like color guard or "for black" or "dark clothes". And always follow the product and garment label instructions before using.
  2. If machine washing is recommended, you can turn the garment inside out, so it won’t come into contact with other clothes, and use a shorter wash cycle.
  3. Consider washing dark clothes in cold water, then air-dry. Hot water and drying clothes in a dryer can cause fading to happen faster.
  4. Use a dryer sheet to help remove pet hair and repel lint. And remember to clean the lint trap in your dryer after each and every use.
  5. Oily stains can be trouble for black fabric. Make melted chocolate disappear by pretreating with a product containing enzymes. Don’t put in the dryer until the stain is gone. You may need to rewash with a color safe bleach.

Be sure to check the ACI Stain Removal Chart for more stain removal help.