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It may seem like the last thing on your mind, but the last action item of your workday is one of the most important: washing your scrubs. Your scrubs are your sidekick in your workday, acting as a layer between you and the many bacteria you are exposed to daily in this line of work. Cleaning these scrubs and preventing contamination is crucial to your health and the health of your scrubs. We’ve compiled a list of the top ten tips for keeping those scrubs clean!
Before you even introduce a new pair of scrubs to your uniform lineup, make sure to give them a rinse in cold water. This will lock in colors to prevent later bleeding, eliminate any possible factory chemicals, and help mitigate shrinkage.
If possible, try to wear gloves when handling your dirty scrubs to avoid cross contamination. This is especially important if someone in your home is immunocompromised.
Once a stain has settled into the fabric, it is almost impossible to get it out; by the time it’s in the wash, it’s usually too late. There are many different ways to treat various stains before they get washed in a cycle, leaving your scrubs without a stain in sight.
Blood: The best solution for blood spots or stains is to first soak the contaminated area in cold water; hot water could cause the proteins in the blood to set in even deeper. Next, spot-treat the blood stain with an enzyme-based cleaner will help to break up the protein and allow the stain to lift.
Body fluids: For messes like vomit, urine, and other fluids from the body, enzyme-based cleaners are
at these stains with baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and cold water
Ink: Ink stains are best treated immediately. Hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol are great tools to blot the ink stain to help get the stain out before washing.
Deodorant: Pesky deodorant stains happen to the best of us. To break up deodorant on your scrubs, make a paste with a ratio of 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water and gently scrub it into the stain. Let this soak for at least an hour before washing the scrubs.
Flip Them Inside Out
Not unlike many of the clothes in your personal wardrobe, most scrubs’ material easily pills. Make sure to flip your scrubs inside out before you toss them in the wash to ensure that the fabric stays in the best condition.
Know your Material
Different materials require different cleaning steps to maintain their best quality. It’s essential to know how to treat the different fabrics of your uniform to wash them as best as possible.
Pure Cotton: The best solution for cotton scrubs is a cold water cycle to best protect the fabric color from bleeding. High heat during drying will lead to fast shrinkage of your cotton scrubs. For the best drying, either hang dry or tumble dry on the lowest setting.
Polyester-Cotton Blend: On the flip side of pure cotton, cotton blend scrubs are best washed in warm water. While a blend can handle higher drying temperatures than pure cotton, it is best to dry on medium heat at most.
Always wash your scrubs separately
Don’t risk contaminating your personal wardrobe with the germs you bring home from your shift. Another reason to keep your clothes separate is load size: mixing the two can create a heavier load, which applies more pressure onto your clothes and can damage your scrubs.
Add vinegar to the wash
Vinegar is a wonderful tool when it comes to scrub washing. Adding a half-cup of vinegar to your rinse cycle water will help to lock in the fabric color and keep the material super soft.
Use Chlorine Bleach for White Cotton Scrubs
Bleach as a disinfectant is luckily the perfect solution for your white cotton scrubs! To get that deep clean that you know bleach can deliver, toss some in with your whites. Just make sure to avoid doing it frequently so as not to heavily weaken the fabric.
As much as it can be tempting to use full force to power wash your scrubs, reel it in! Remember that although scrubs are heavy duty protection between you and any germs you encounter on your shift, they are materially delicate, and live their fullest garment life when treated with a light hand.
Store Your Scrubs Properly
Good wash practices extend beyond the actual wash; how you treat your clothes once they dry is just as important. If possible, storing scrubs in airtight containers is the best way to avoid bringing outside germs with you into work. Wrinkle free options for storage are hanging your scrubs, or rolling them!
Cleaning your uniform well is an important part of looking and feeling your best. Following these easy tips will help make sure your scrubs are scrubbed properly. For an amazing selection of scrubs to include in your closet, make sure to head to https://www.uniformadvantage.com now!