Halloween is almost here! Soon, a bunch of pirates, princesses, cowboys, and Elsa’s are going to be running around your neighborhood. Halloween is absolute fun for all involved, but cleaning up after can be a bit of a headache. Most costumes are made of synthetic materials that stain easily. That means if you want to be able to use your kids’ costumes next year or even as dress up, what you do on November 1 is rather important. Below, we’ve shared some ways to wash various types of costumes.
- Animal Costumes: Typically, these are full body suit with hoods and faux fur. They’re adorable and keep your toddler warm, but they can be difficult to clean. Because younger children wear these, the fronts of these garments will often be covered in stains or candy. To remove a lollipop that is stuck on the front, do not pull as you will damage the costume. Instead, soak the garment in a tub of warm water for an hour or so. Follow the directions on the garment, but you might try washing it on gentle with a gentle detergent. Putting a stain cleansing aid, like Oxi Clean, in the washer might help too. If you have to dry the costume, only do so on tumble dry low. You might dry it halfway and then let it air dry.
- Princesses: These dresses are fragile and tend to rip easily. We suggest rinsing these out as soon as possible. Avoid Oxi Clean as this might melt the fabric. Don’t use anything acidic either. Be gentle, your best bet might be using a small amount of detergent and hand washing these royal robes.
- Superheros: Most superhero costumes come with a sixpack. If there is a way to remove these foam inserts (like you can in some sports bras) you might start there. Sometimes, these can get misshapen if they go through the machine. Again, wash these on a cold, gentle cycle. Don’t use too much detergent either.
- Anything Vinyl: Whether you’ve got a little hippie or a pirate, your child’s costume might have some vinyl or faux leather components. You already know not to wash these. Instead, lie the garment flat and gently rub the stain with a soft cloth dampened by a one parts detergent five parts water solution. Rinse with a cloth dampened by only water, and then let dry.
- Anything Wispy or Flimsy: We’re talking fairy wings, zombies, ghosts, the whole nine yards. Do not put any thing fragile in the washing machine as this could damage the costume and your machine. Instead, get an empty storage tote and fill it halfway with lukewarm water. Put in 2 tablespoons of a gentle detergent and churn the solution with your hand. Next, place the stained garment in the bucket and gently swish it around in a figure-8 motion. You might have to let the item soak for a few minutes and then try the process again. Fill a second bucket with clean water and rinse. Gently wring the item out and allow it to air dry by hanging it on a plastic hanger or laying flat.
As you can probably tell, cleaning a costume is a long process. Instead of spending all that time yourself, send Freshly Folded all your kids’ disguises and we’ll take care of it. That way, you’ll have more time to corral all the sugar highs that are about to ensue.