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Care Guide for Silk Sheets and Silk Pillowcases

Posted by Erika Cellupica on

Here at Mulberry Park Silks, we believe silk sheets are not only an indulgence but also a fantastic investment for your hair, skin and sleep quality. They're also a luxury product, and you want to make them last. So please take a moment to go over the following tips to help keep your silk sheets and pillowcases soft, luxurious, and welcoming over time.

Open washing machine with blue silk sheets inside

The first wash - Caring for your brand new silk pillowcases and silk sheets

When you first unbox your sheets, read and follow the care directions. You'll discover that silk is actually quite simple to care for, and requires only a bit of extra attention. You should wash your new sheets, before using, in cold water, either by hand or in a machine on the delicate cycle. We strongly recommend using a mesh laundry bag and a gentle detergent (preferably one formulated for silk). You can hang your new sheets to dry (preferable) or put them in the dryer on the lowest setting (no heat is the best). Check every few minutes and add only the time necessary to dry. Silk dries quickly; avoid exposing it to unnecessary heat.

Do's and Don'ts of Caring for your Silk Sheets and Pillowcases

DO use a pH-neutral detergent. Silk is a natural fiber. Washing it in detergents that are either too acidic or too alkaline will cause those fibers to harden. Look for a detergent clearly labeled as having a neutral pH, like those from Heritage Park Laundry Essentials. This will help maintain the integrity of your fabric with every wash.

DO invest in a fine mesh laundry bag to help keep the silk from tearing. This is particularly important if your machine has an agitator mechanism. Silk is light and delicate; it can sometimes get caught under the agitator and tear and pull. The agitator and the inside of your machine can also have tiny nicks, burrs, and rough edges caused by other laundry items like zippers or buttons. A mesh wash bag will help protect your sheets from damage.

DON'T wash in hot water. Temperatures above 80 degrees Fahrenheit (29 Celsius) can damage silk significantly. It is best to wash all silk products in cold water.

DON'T use bleach, which will harm the fabric and cause it to yellow.

DON'T use fabric softener. The natural thread fibers of silk and our specialized charmeuse weaving technique create the softest silk available. Fabric softener is unnecessary and will leave an unpleasant residue on the fabric.

DON'T dry clean. While it won't damage your silk sheets, dry cleaning is unnecessary. There's no benefit to incurring the extra expense. If machine washing is not an option, we recommend hand-washing with a small amount of detergent.

DO hang dry if possible. While our silk products are safe to tumble dry on low, hang drying will better preserve the fabric. Place your silk on a non-slip hanger and air dry. This should take only about 45 minutes, depending on the temperature and conditions. If you prefer to machine dry, use a NO HEAT setting and check every few minutes.

DON'T use dryer sheets, which will only add a waxy coating to the fabric and won't prevent wrinkles.

DON'T use dryer balls. These wool or spiky plastic balls, used for chemical-free fabric softening, can tear delicate silk.

DO iron sparingly. All silk products wrinkle after washing; the threads will start to relax and straighten after a few nights' use. If you prefer to iron, we recommend ironing just your pillowcases (since they're all that show!) on the lowest setting available. A light steam will enable the iron to glide smoothly over the fabric.

Sheen, Stains, and Snags on your silk bedding and pillowcases

Sheen: It's normal for silk to lose a little of its original luster after repeated washing. If your silk looks absolutely dull, you may have used too much detergent which has left a coating. (Of course, double-check to make sure your pillowcase isn't inside out!). A touch up with a cool-warm iron will help restore the sheen and bring your silk back to life. Use a steam setting to ensure the iron glides smoothly across the fabric.

Stains: Spot treat stains with caution since some stain removal products can cause your silk sheets to discolor. We recommend using a bit of gentle detergent to pre-treat stains before laundering. Stains do not constitute product defects; stained items will not be accepted for return.

Snags: While silk is quite strong and durable, a small tear can quickly grow and compromise your fabric. To avoid this type of damage, use extra caution when washing; as we recommend above, a mesh laundry bag is ideal. When using your sheets, be mindful of anything that can tear or snag, including (but not limited to) rings, earrings and other jewelry; zippers, Velcro or hooks on clothing; sharp surfaces; long or broken nails; rough skin; and pets. Even facial hair or stubble can cause pilling and wear leading to tears over time.

Protect your investment with detergent formulated specifically for silk bedding and pillowcases

Choosing the proper detergent can help extend the beauty and integrity of your silk sheets. At Mulberry Park Silks, we recommend using a gentle detergent specially made and pH-balanced for silk. Heritage Park Fine Fabric Wash, will gently clean your silk sheets and keep them looking and feeling beautiful, wash after wash.