How to Wash a Wool Blanket

Did you know that wool can last  more than 20 years, provided it is well cared-for? The classic wool blanket is a winter staple for any home, but at this point in the year, yours probably needs a little TLC.  There’s no need for an expensive trip to the dry cleaners: you can wash your blanket safely and easily by using Eucalan in the washing machine! Today, we’ll show you how to wash an organic wool blanket from Shepherd’s Lamb, a working family ranch located in New Mexico whose flock provides the fleece for their heirloom-quality woven blankets.

Lanolin is a naturally-occurring waxy substance which coats a sheep’s fleece, which is often removed when processing the fibres. The lanolin in our no-rinse formula naturally conditions wool fibres to keep them supple while also reducing static.  We recommend our Eucalyptus or Lavender scents, which are both scented with essential oils that are naturally antiseptic and moth-repellent.

Before washing your blanket, it’s important to remove soils and stains as soon as possible, either by pre-treating with a Stain Treating Towelette or spot treating with full-strength Eucalan  where needed.

Then, follow the instructions below for the type of washing machine you have:

Top Loading Machine:

  • Set your washing machine to delicates.
  • Fill drum with cool water.
  • Add 4 Tbsp Eucalan for a large blanket.
  • Submerse blanket and run through gentle/handwash cycle (tip: try adding a few towels to balance out the load!).
  • Hang blanket to dry thoroughly.

Front Loading Machine:

  • Place blanket in drum.
  • Set to delicate cycle with cool water.
  • Add 4 Tbsp Eucalan to detergent compartment in drawer.
  • Run cycle.
  • Hang blanket to dry thoroughly.

We recommend washing your blankets a few times throughout the winter, and also before packing them away for the season. Do not pack away a damp blanket – make sure it is fully dry before storing, and be sure to use air-tight containers to keep out unwanted pests, and when you unpack them from storage, always examine your blankets for small holes which can be a sign of moths (click here for tips on dealing with these unwanted pests).

With proper care, you’ll enjoy the warmth and durability of your wool blanket for years to come!

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How to Care for Your Sports Bras

Depending on how frequently you work out and how many sports bras you have, your sports bras will need to be replaced every 1-2 years. But with proper care, you can help extend the life and shape of your sports bras to maximize their performance and ensure they last as long as possible.

It’s best to have a few  that you can rotate through, as they need to be washed after each wear and the more sports bras you have, the less wear and tear on any one bra. We also recommend using a natural detergent like Eucalan, as harsh chemicals can have adverse effects on technical fibres and cause faster deterioration.

You will know it’s time to replace your sports bras if:

  • Your weight has changed by more than 5 pounds
  • The fabric no longer feels as snug and supportive as it did when it was new
  • It is moving around too much when you are working out

Considering how expensive sports bras can be, you will want to do everything possible to take good care of them. Here’s the best way to wash your sports bra to ensure it will stay like new for as long as possible!

Important! No matter which way you choose to wash your sports bras, always wash them after each wear to remove sweat and odours.

Hand Wash/Sink Method

For hand washing, add one capful (or one pod) of Eucalan in the scent of your choice to the water. Submerge your sports bra (or bras), and let soak for ten minutes.  We recommend Eucalyptus, Grapefruit, Lavender or Wrapture (scented with jasmine) for their naturally-occurring antibacterial benefits, as they are made with pure essential oils. Gently agitate the water, and then drain the water. Don’t wring the fabric, gently roll the sports bras in a towel to help absorb the excess water, and lay flat to dry away from heat and direct sunlight.

Washing Machine Method

Set your washing machine to cold – hot water can contribute to fabrics shrinking, and speed up the breakdown of technical fibres like spandex!  If your sports bras have small straps on them, use a mesh lingerie bag to prevent the straps from getting tangled or caught in the machine. Add one pod or a capful of Eucalan in the scent of your choice to the washing machine.  Eucalyptus, Grapefruit, Lavender or Wrapture (scented with jasmine essential oil) have naturally-occurring antibacterial benefits, and are a great choice. When the spin cycle is complete, lay your sports bras flat to dry away from heat and direct sunlight.

P.S. – If it’s been a while since you last cleaned your yoga mat, we have a post showing  just how to do that, too!

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How to Care for Shearling

Shearling requires a little bit of TLC to keep them looking brand new. Those wonderful Sheepskin rugs, shearling coats, and even Ugg boots are all so deliciously soft, but when you get them for the first time, it can be tough to know what to do.  But we have you covered!

Eucalan is recommended for washable sheepskins and furs. The tanning process determines whether the skin is washable or not. If you wash a skin that is not washable, the hide will become brittle and you will not be pleased with the results.

To determine if a skin is washable, check for a care label, contact the manufacturer or retailer you bought the skin from, or cut off a small piece of the skin and place it in water for a short time. Allow it to dry away from direct heat or sunlight. Once dry, if the skin is pliable and the fur/wool does not pull out and looks good, you can go ahead and wash the whole skin.

Most of the time, you can spot clean spills or specific marks that appear on your item. This technique works on shearling boots, too! To spot clean:

  1. Dab a small amount of full strength Eucalan delicate wash in the scent of your choice onto the spot.
  2. Wipe in the same direction as the sheepskin with a damp cloth, until the spot disappears.
  3. Blot any excess moisture with paper towels.
  4.  Lay out your rug or boots, or hang your coat to dry away from direct light or heat.
  5. Once the sheepskin is dry, brush gently with a soft bristled brush.
  6. If the shearling or sheepskin has a longer pile, shake it out to restore the fluffiness.

Thanks to Sprout Natural Parenting for the great photo!

Sometimes, you will need to wash the entire item due to normal dust and dirt, a really big spill, or perhaps it’s starting to look a bit grimy. Here is how to wash your sheepskin/shearling:

  • Fill washing machine (or bathtub for really large items) with water, then add Eucalan.
  • Soak for 1 hr, squeezing soap and water through item from time to time.
  • If the item is really dirty, repeat the process.
  • Spin to remove excess water and lay over a rack or rail to dry away from direct heat.
  • When nearly dry, give it a good shake.
  • May take 2-3 days to dry.

You can also wash your shearling boots the same way described above, and will no doubt contribute to them looking like new for a lot longer!

These tips will help keep all your shearling and sheepskin products looking great, but if you are concerned about a dark stain or a lot of dirt, it is worth taking the item into a professional cleaner. Many cleaners offer wet cleaning services and may also use Eucalan!

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How to Remove Common Party Stains

It’s that time of year- ramping up for party season! Fall brings more family gatherings, Thanksgiving, and the never-ending carousel of holiday parties won’t be far behind. Here we’ve put together a review of the best way to remove the most common party stains: Red wine, oils (olive, avocado, safflower, etc.), candle wax, coffee and chocolate.

Read on, and you’ll be prepared for anything at your next party!

Red Wine

Sprinkle salt liberally over the red wine mark , as much as needed to help absorb the wine. When as much is absorbed as possible, vacuum up the salt and pour club soda over it to help dilute the remaining wine. Then apply full strength Eucalan to any remaining marks, and let sit for 15 minutes. Wash item as normal.

 

Oils

Blot the oil immediately with a paper towel, and sprinkle baking soda or cornstarch onto the remaining oil mark and let sit. In the morning, apply full strength Eucalan to the remaining oil mark, and let sit for 15 minutes. Then wash item.

Candle Wax

Let the wax dry completely before trying to clean it. Apply an ice pack to make sure that the wax is completely solid before beginning to remove it. Remove as much wax as possible by scraping it with a butter knife. Get two paper bags, and place one underneath the fabric and another on top of it- you will be using a clothes iron to remove the rest of the wax. Gently iron the area with the wax on it repeatedly, moving the paper bags around so that any wax that transfers from the fabric to the paper bags isn’t being reapplied to the fabric again.

Coffee

Blot spill immediately until no more colour is coming away on a cloth or paper towel. Apply full strength Eucalan directly to the remaining coffee marks, and leave for at least half an hour before washing item as normal.

Chocolate

If possible, flush the fabric from the wrong side with warm water to help prevent the chocolate from being driven further into the fibres. When as much chocolate has been rinsed off as possible, saturate the remaining mark with full strength Eucalan, and let sit for 30 minutes. Gently scrub at the stain after 30 minutes, and repeat if necessary. Launder as usual once the mark is removed.

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How to Keep Your New Clothes Looking Great All Season

Even if you aren’t much of a shopper, there is something indescribably wonderful about purchasing new clothes for fall. The seasons are changing, all your summer clothes are looking tired, and the rich fall colours are calling your name. For many of us, the clothes we buy in fall serve us all through the winter as well- which means that they are some of our hardest working wardrobe pieces. Whether you want to protect the longevity of your favourite sweaters, or just aren’t a fan of shopping and want to minimize how much of it you need to do, we have great tips on how to care for your new fall clothes so that they keep looking great all through the season.

Clothing Care

  • Rotate your clothes. It might seem minimalist to only own one grey t-shirt or only two bras, but constant wear (and the subsequent washing) will cause fabrics to deteriorate faster. Make sure you have enough of any key pieces so that you can rotate them regularly.
  • Buy better quality clothing. Cheap tops are going to stretch out and look terrible after one wash, so why bother? It’s worth buying fewer items of higher quality that you can enjoy over and over.
  • Store between seasons. Storing clean items between seasons by using big ziploc bags to protect your sweaters and woolens from moths or pets.
  • Room to breathe. Don’t cram so many items into your closet that they are getting fold and crease marks because they are too squished together.

Laundry Tips

Take a quick look at the lint trap in your dryer – it’s plain to see that washing your clothes contributes substantially to the wear and tear of the fibers.  To reduce the damage washing does to your new clothes try:

  • Treat stains right away. Put some full-strength Eucalan or use a stain treating towelette on any spots before putting them in the laundry hamper. This will make it much easier to get the stains out of items when they are washed.
  • Using the gentle cycle as much as possible. The less aggressive the agitation in the washing, the less fibre damage. It’s that simple.
  • Only wash when items smell or look dirty. You know how long you were wearing it, and if all you did was sit still in an air conditioned office, that blouse might be fine to wear again without a wash.
  • Use a gentle but effective fabric wash. Harsh chemicals will speed up fabric deterioration. We recommend using Eucalan for all your washing needs, but we are a bit biased!
  • Turning clothes inside out to minimize signs of wear due to washing. It really does. Especially good for dark items.
  • Using mesh laundry bags for delicates. Ever try to pull something out of the washing machine and a sleeve or shoulder strap has fully pretzled around another item or two? It’s always scary when that happens, because you know that has totally caused some damage.
  • Wash in cold water. Hot and warm temperatures can cause more damage to clothes, and increase risk of shrinking. Plus, cold water is better for your electric bill!
  • Air dry your clothes away from bright light.  The dryer causes a lot of stress on fabrics, and causes many fibers to shrink. Air drying is better for your clothes, and your electric bill.

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Caring for Your Summer Whites

Wearing white feels so fresh and perfect for summer, but keeping your whites truly white is hard work, especially if you prefer to use plant-based detergents. We’ve put together a guide on keeping your summer whites looking as fresh as the day you bought them, all summer long! Read on for all sorts of tips.

General Rules:

  • Wash your whites after each and every wear. Body oils, sweat, perfume, and antiperspirants all contribute to the yellowing of fabrics. The less time your whites spend with any of that on them, the less likely they will yellow.
  • Treat any stains or marks right away- Eucalan wipes are perfect for this, and are so weightless you can carry them with you all the time.
  • Always separate your whites from other colours when washing. Even if it seems like the other fabrics are also light, it’s easy for other items to leech a little leftover dye into the water, especially if they are newer items.
  • Never use bleach. Bleach will yellow whites in just a few washes, and will also thin fabrics, shortening the life of your garment.
  • Don’t add too much detergent, or overload your wash. There needs to be enough freedom of movement between the items to ensure a full rinse of detergent from the fabrics. Using a delicate detergent like Eucalan helps protect your clothes while being effective on removing oil and dirt from fabrics.
  • Use deodorant instead of antiperspirant. Antiperspirant chemical bond with sweat and create the chemical reaction that causes yellow stains to occur in the underarms of your clothes. If you can make the switch to deodorant instead, it will help a lot.

And here are a few bonus tips that can really help go the extra mile on keeping your whites bright:

  • Don’t iron whites on too high a heat setting. Irons can scorch fabrics, leading to yellowing.
  • Check to make sure that your washing machine is clean. Wipe the inside with a damp white paper towel and check – you might be surprised at the dark lint that can build up inside the drum and contribute to dingy whites.
  • If you have hard water, add a water softener to each load. The minerals in hard water can remain on your whites and cause dinginess and yellowing.
  • If you know you are going to be eating stain-prone foods (we’re looking at you, spaghetti and tomato sauce!), wear a dark colour, not white. No point in tempting fate, right?

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Best of Eucalan: Our Top Spring Posts

Ah, spring! A time when everything feels fresh and new, or at least you want it to feel that way! Spring is indeed a great time to freshen up your home and wardrobe, but that doesn’t mean it has to be all work. Here’s a round-up of our top spring posts to get you in the mood to freshen up your wardrobe, your home, and your routine!

Click here for great Tips for spring cleaning your wardrobe.

Click here for the best tips for spring cleaning your home to get it feeling airy and fresh.

With Earth Day upon us, here are 4 ways to celebrate Earth Day all year round.

But it’s not all cleaning – you have to make time for a bit of fun! Click the links below for crafts, recipes and fun decor ideas.

Washi tape tutorial to upcycle old Eucalan bottles

Think Spring – Time for a bit of fun!

Of course, this list wouldn’t be complete without our most recent spring post, all about the best way to shift your wardrobe from winter clothes to spring.

Happy Spring, everyone!

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Season Shift: Packing Away Winter Coats & Clothes

Ah, spring! It always feels like a relief to be switching back into lighter clothing and jackets, getting outside to watch the leaves beginning to bud and spring flowers popping up all over the place.  With the changing of seasons, much of our winter wardrobe will be set aside and our spring and summer clothes will be coming back into circulation.  Some people have their clothes in their closets year year-round regardless of the weather, while others pack things away when the seasons shift. Regardless of your storage preference, it’s worth taking some time to properly care for the winter clothes, coats, and accessories that you probably won’t wear again for another 6 months (hopefully!).

To Prep your Winter Clothes:

  1. Gather together all the clothes that you are unlikely to wear until the fall, including heavy winter coats. Consult our handy guide fo caring for your winter coat to decide if you are going to wash it yourself or take it to a dry cleaner.
  2. Wash everything. For your sweaters (either handmade or store bought), it is worth taking the time to de-pill so that when you pull them out again in the fall they look fresh and ready to wear. Washing sweaters yourself is also very easy – we have a great video to show you exactly how it’s done.
  3. Make sure everything is dry before returning it to your closet, or store in air-tight storage containers. Vacuum seal storage bags can also be great for this. If hanging items, do not hang any heavy long sleeved items like your sweaters, as the hangers will leave dents in the shoulders when hung for a long period of time.

Winter accessories like hats, mittens/gloves, and knit scarves need attention during this time to prevent stains and keep them looking their best.  We have a great overview here on caring for your winter accessories before packing them away for spring.

Moths are a harsh reality for some. Even if you have never had any, there’s always a chance they could happen, and they are more prevalent in big cities and urban centers. As it’s extremely difficult to get rid of moths once they discover your closet is full of delicious sweaters, preventative care is really worth it.  If you store out-of-season clothes somewhere outside of your home (for example:  a garage, shed, or storage locker), you will definitely want to use storage containers that are airtight and cannot easily be opened by temperature shifts or even clever critters.

As you begin to pull out your spring and summer clothes,  they may be wrinkly and looking tired. They may even show food or drink spots you never knew were there, especially if you forgot to clean them before setting them aside for winter.

To Review your Spring/Summer Clothes:

  1. Pull out anything you haven’t worn in the last 6 months from your closet or storage containers.
  2.  If there are any items that don’t fit well or you don’t love anymore, put them aside to donate to a local charity.
  3.  For the remaining items,  wash gently with your favourite scent of Eucalan, either by hand or in the washing machine, according to their care instructions. Hang items to dry, away from sunlight or strong heat sources.

Now you are ready to wear your beautiful spring clothes!

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Pet Care with Eucalan

Eucalan is wonderful for all sorts of delicate washing for fine garments, knitwear, lingerie, and quilts, but it is also brilliant for pet care –  Did you know that you can wash your dog with Eucalan? It’s true! The natural formula and essential oils mean that it is non-toxic and supremely gentle on their fur and skin. Try the Eucalyptus scent to help repel bugs and ticks!

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

And of course, you can wash your cat. Sometimes cats get into sticky messes and need a bath, too.  You can use Eucalan just like you would any other pet shampoo.

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

How to Wash a Pet Bed

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

For washing a dog or cat bed, you can easily wash it at home in your washing machine with Eucalan.  Pet bed too big to fit into your washing machine? Go to a local laundromat and take advantage of the oversized machines! To wash a pet bed in the machine:

Step 1: Using a pet hair brush, lint roller, or sticky tape; remove as much pet hair from the bed as possible.

Step 2: place the pet bed into the washing machine, open end down – the bottom of the pet bed should be facing you. This is to help ensure an even wash through the machine and prevent water collecting in the bed during the spin cycle and making it overly soggy.  Add one capful of Eucalan (or one travel pod) in the scent of your choosing. Eucalyptus is great for deterring bugs, and if your pet has especially sensitive skin, go with Natural – it’s unscented.

Step 3: Once the washing machine has completed its cycle, remove the pet bed and let dry in the bathtub or shower. If the spin cycle of your washing machine has done an effective job in removing most of the water and the fabric is not at risk for shrinking, you can put your pet bed in the tumble dryer on a short, low-heat cycle.

How to Wash Pet Toys

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

Pet toys should be washed regularly, even if they have only been played with indoors. You know how gross and wet toys can get after a pet has really given it a good chew! Here’s how to wash all sorts of pet toys with Eucalan:

Step 1:  Remove as much pet hair as possible from the toy, particularly if it is a knit or fabric toy. Use a lint brush or sticky tape.

Step 2: Fill a sink with cool water, and add one capful or one packet of Eucalan in the scent of your choice. We recommend Natural for toys, which is unscented.

Step 3: Put the toys in, and let them soak for about 5 minutes, then gently agitate the water.

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

Step 4: Drain the water, and roll the toys in a clean towel. Let toys dry away from heat or light.

Pet Care with Eucalan | Eucalan.com

While the time it takes to wash your pet can vary, washing their toys and bedding is a snap. Having a regular routine for washing their bedding and toys reduces pet odors significantly and helps reduce allergens in the home as well.

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The Best Way to Wash Your Bra: Valentine’s Day Edition

How to Wash Your Bra : Valetine's Edition | Eucalan.com

While we talk about it in February,  remember that you are worth new undergarments all the time, no matter the time of year! We are all guilty of occasionally hanging onto a bra too long, even though it’s discoloured and stretched out, and the straps have lost their elasticity. As women, a bra is likely the most complicated garment we wear – modern bras have a fair bit of engineering not to mention elastic, metal, plastic, and often padding. Considering the effort you put into finding a good bra that you feel comfortable and beautiful in, it’s worth taking care of it.

Choosing a Bra That Makes You Feel Beautiful

How to Wash Your Bra : Valetine's Edition | Eucalan.com

Chances are, you already have a comfortable bra or two that you love and reach for more days than most.  When shopping for something new, look for bras that have the same elements that you love- is it a smooth band, a no-frills cup? Is it wide straps,  or a full coverage cup?  Find bras that have those key elements, and details that you might not have tried before- our example here is the Dame de Paris bra from Marlies Dekkers, a European designer who has a core line that is specifically designed to be comfortable while also being a little out of the ordinary. If you like what you see, you can find this style and others at these sites:

www.peacheslingerie.com
www.lineaintima.ca
www.thebrabarboutique.com

How to Wash Your Bra : Valetine's Edition | Eucalan.com

You might think that the straps on the top would be strange, but the bra is incredibly comfortable, and the straps are low enough that unless you are wearing a deep v-neck, most shirt necklines are well above the straps and will not show. A matching bottom is a wonderful treat for yourself – if you find a great bra that you love, go ahead and buy the matching bottoms. While not every day is a matching-bra-and-underwear sort of day, when you do it you will feel extra put together, even if no one sees it but you!

To prolong the life of your bra you should wash it regularly, after every 3 or 4 wears. The exception is if you were heavily perspiring in your bra, then it should be washed sooner, to avoid bacteria build up and sweat stains. Body lotion, sweat and even your natural body chemistry can cause the elasticity of your bra (think straps and the band) to deteriorate over time. Washing regularly helps prevent that.

Hand Wash

Fill your sink with cool water, adding one capful of Eucalan (we recommend Wrapture for your undergarments, which is lightly scented with jasmine essential oil) while the water is running. Put your bra in the sink and lightly agitate, squeezing the fabric very gently to help ensure that the bra is totally saturated. To save time, feel free to add more than one bra (or bottoms!) to the sink and wash them in batches. Let everything soak for about 10 minutes, then agitate them again through the water and take them out. No need to rinse when you use Eucalan! Do not wring them or squeeze them too aggressively, especially if you have padding or underwire. Have a clean, thick towel ready to lightly roll the items in to absorb excess moisture. Hang away from heat and light- your shower is probably a good place for them to dry.

How to Wash Your Bra : Valentine's Edition | Eucalan.com

We have a great video right here if you want to see how it’s done:

Machine Wash

Before washing, make sure that the bra hooks are fastened to avoid snagging any fabrics. Place in a mesh lingerie bag, and add one capful of Eucalan to the washing machine. Set washing machine to delicate cycle. Hang to dry away from heat or bright light – your shower is probably a good spot.

Important- never put your bras in the dryer! The heat will destroy the elastic very quickly, and likely cause underwires to get distorted and cause damage to the cups, if there is padding.

 Additional Tips:
  • When hanging up bras to dry, don’t hang up by only one should strap. Either drape them evenly over the shower rail or hang them on a clothes hanger on the shower rail. This is especially important for underwire bras, when the weight of the wet bra could cause fabric and the underwire to stretch from the weight of a wet bra.
  • If you have sensitive skin, wash your bras and underwear with Eucalan before first wearing them. The clothing manufacturing process often uses additional chemicals and fabric agents to help ensure that garments don’t look too wrinkled when they arrive in stores.

  • If you want to save time, pick one evening a week when you will batch up the washing of your bras and delicate underwear all at once.

When you take care of your undergarments, they will last longer and be a joy to wear.  And they will love you back! Or at least, smile at you from the sink:

How to Wash Your Bra : Valentine's Edition | Eucalan.com

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