Silk sheets are an investment. This article discusses eight things you should NOT do when sleeping on and caring for silk pillowcases and bedding.
Don’t Damage Your Luxury Silk Sheets
Nothing compares to the absolute luxury of pure silk pillowcases and sheets. And there’s a good reason for that: high-quality mulberry silk delivers many benefits, like preventing bedhead and tangles; minimizing sleep wrinkles; keeping hair and skin naturally hydrated; and regulating body temperature for maximum comfort in any conditions. On top of all that, the lustrous charmeuse weave looks and feels absolutely decadent. But silk is an investment—one you want to make last by treating it well.
Unfortunately, there are some habits and practices that are not good for your sheets. Here at Mulberry Park Silks, we say SOS: save our sheets! We want you to enjoy your beautiful silk pillowcases and bedding for the longest possible time. So let’s break down some ways you could be inadvertently damaging your silk sheets and offer some suggestions about what to do instead.
Eight Things That Will Ruin Your Silk Bedding (and What to Do Instead):
Using the wrong detergent.Commercially available detergents are usually too harsh for delicate silk. On top of that, even a mild detergent might contain laundry enzymes. And while enzymes are great for breaking down protein-based stains, silk is itself a protein-based fabric; regular washing with enzyme detergents can break down the structure of silk.
Do this instead: Use a pH-neutral, gentle detergent that is enzyme free and made for silk. We recommend Heritage Park Silk and Wool Detergent, a concentrated formula that is made for natural fibers.
Washing on the wrong cycle.
Washing silk on a regular cycle can be too rough on silk fibers. Hot water can also damage silk.
Do this instead: Wash silk on a silk or delicate cycle and cool water. Here are some guidelines for washing silk sheets; you can machine wash in cool to lukewarm water. Hand washing is also okay. Here is a helpful guide to washing machine cycles to get you acquainted with the delicate wash features on your machine. Finally, there is no need to dry clean your Mulberry Park Silks pillowcase or bed sheets.
Throwing your bedding right in the machine.Putting your silk pillowcases and sheets in the washer unprotected can cause the delicate fabric to pull and snag on metal burrs and even the agitator mechanism.
Do this instead: Place all silk bedding in fine mesh laundry bags to protect them in the machine. Turn pillowcases inside out and place in a bag. If you’re washing a whole sheet set, use a separate mesh bag for each large silk item: fitted sheet, flat sheet, and duvet cover.
Using fabric softener. Fabric softener can leave a waxy build up and film on your silk sheets (and inside your machine).
Do this instead: Don’t use anything but an enzyme-free detergent made for natural fibers on your silk bed linen. The soft, lustrous charmeuse weave of 100 percent pure mulberry silk is wonderfully soft on its own.
Putting silk sheets in a hot dryer.Heat can damage the delicate fibers of silk.
Do this instead: Hang your silk sheets to dry indoors or outside away from direct sunlight. They should dry in less than a few hours. If you need to put your sheets in the dryer, do it on a no-heat setting. Ironing your silk sheets is not really necessary; place them on the bed and they will smooth out in a day or so. If you choose to iron, follow these instructions so you don’t damage the sheets.
Neglecting to groom:Stubble, dry skin, and long or jagged- toenails as well as calloused feet, can damage silk by snagging and tearing it.
Do this instead: While a silk pillowcase is great for a grown-in beard (nourishing and protecting) facial stubble can be hard on the fabric (ditto leg stubble). So until your beard is grown in, sleep on another pillowcase. And take care of your dry skin and long nails before sliding into your silk sheets at night.
Sleeping in your makeup.This is a big no-no, because many cosmetics can leave unsightly and difficult-to-remove.
Do this instead: Wash cosmetics off before lying down to sleep, and allow any moisturizer or facial creams to fully absorb into your skin.
Not treating stains right away.Leaving a stain on your silk sheets can cause it to “set” in and be harder to remove.
Do this instead: Prepare to treat stains promptly, particularly blood, which can set in. In general, rinsing with warm water and washing as usual will remove the majority of stains you’re likely to incur. While we don’t recommend using enzyme detergent to regularly wash silk sheets, you may occasionally use an enzyme formula to pre-treat or pre-soak a stain on silk. For this we suggest using Heritage Park All-Purpose Laundry Detergent, which is a plant-based enzyme formula.