We love: Dr. Beckmann’s emergency services for botched washing

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Proof comes this week that the washing instruction labels retailers manage to put in REALLY ANNOYING places on clothes are a total waste of time. According to cleaning specialist Dr. Beckmann research shows that 73% of the population never read the labels before washing clothes and on average, each person ruins three items of clothes a year (only three?) due to incorrect washing. 81% don't even know what the symbols on the labels they never read mean anyway (almost anyone under 25 apparently).

Might this be, do you think, because the labels are often nasty, itchy and are sewn into places that are guaranteed to rub you raw? Might they stand a better chance of surviving to the first wash and not being cut out and thrown away if they were better designed and in more sensible places? But we digress….

The research also highlighted a small group of people who do read the labels, sort-of understand the symbols and hardly ever ruin clothes because of bad washing, guess who they are? Yep, us! 40 plus women. I'm not sure this is anything to be proud of, as we've excelled here due to the drudgey years of being 'in charge of the washing'.

(Recently, due to a shift in circumstances, middleagedad took charge of the washing and in less than a month of the new regime I lost -due to shrinkage/change of colour/collapse- most of my clothes marked 'delicate'… It's sink or swim in the new-style, gung-ho, 'what label?' laundry room).

So, since you are all pretty good at washing, you may already know about Dr Beckmann's site, which is a bit like an emergency service for botched washing and red-wine-down-the-shirt disasters. It has a rather useful 'stain clinic' where you can mail in a question if the stain is not listed. I have printed off the Top Ten Stain Removing Tips, and stuck them to the washing machine. Not that anyone will read it, of course.

We've never used any of the Dr Beckmann products, but there's a great list of stuff that might be useful at some point, particularly the Lingerie Whitener ….anyone out there got experience of them?

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