Like your board and skis, your outdoor clothing needs to be maintained. After each use, pamper your ski jacket by hanging it up so that they dry well. Remember that a day that starts in dry clothes is the best way to stay warm.
Some people never wash their equipment. This option is certainly a possibility, but your jacket and your pants will not thank you for this. When you hit the slopes, you sweat, and it also happens that you get dirty!
Skiing is not known to be the dirtiest winter sport. However, moisture and dirt affect the waterproofness of your clothing and can damage the protective layer that covers your outerwear. Result: the water gets inside, you are wet, and you are cold. Occasional cleaning is, therefore, a good thing, but what is the best method?
This article shares some methods and tips to consider before you wash your ski jacket. With this information, there will be no more fear that you’ll damage your ski jacket.
How to Wash Ski Jacket without Losing its Waterproofness
As time passed and after repeated washing in soapy water, the materials of your ski clothing that protect you from cold are bound to reduce or wither. The result is that it no more protects you from snow, rain and cold. Consider using a waterproofing product to wash your jacket.
Choose a Waterproofing product to wash ski jacket
Choose a waterproofing product that does not deposit a film on the fabric but lets it breathe. The weaving of the material, even invisible, leaves a gap between the threads. Ski clothing should insulate you from the cold and moisture from outside and allow your perspiration to escape.
There are some products available in the market, specially manufactured to wash such winter clothing. They are stain repellent and waterproofing. These products are also suitable for garments with a Gore-Tex waterproof membrane. But, always check their compatibility with your ski jacket.
Start by looking at (and understanding) the labels inside of your jacket
You will find all the information on the composition of your ski jacket as well as washing tips. However, our advice below is suitable for most ski clothing.
To wash your jacket (for men and women), you can use a washing machine. You can proceed as indicated, whatever the composition of your garment (excluding waterproof membrane-type Gore-Tex):
- Empty your pockets.
- Close all zippers and Velcro to protect them and avoid damaging the fabric.
- Turn your garment inside out to prevent decorative items from rubbing against it and getting damaged.
- Use a liquid household detergent (not powder!) at the usual amount. Do not add fabric softener or other products to your machine.
- Select a “synthetic” washing program at 30° with a spin cycle at 800 rpm maximum.
- If you have a feather ski garment, a down jacket (insulated with duck feathers), add four tennis balls to the drum. At the end of the first cycle, restart a second rinse, then a spin to remove all traces of detergent in the feathers.
- Take out the clothes at the end of the wash cycle.
Dry according to the composition of your clothes. The drying method changes depending on whether your ski garment is synthetic or feather lining.
Drying a Synthetic Garment
If there is no tumble dryer, hang it to dry on a hanger, leaving it upside down. Then pass a slight blow of a soft iron (synthetic mode or 110° max) on the garment’s outer fabric, inserting a towel to reactivate the water-repellent treatment. You will thus maintain good protection against water and snow.
If you have a tumble dryer, leave your garment turned upside down and put it to dry in a soft “synthetic” program at (60 ° max). One cycle of 40 to 50 minutes should be sufficient. Otherwise, put your garment on a hanger to finish drying. There is no need to iron; the dryer’s heat is enough to maintain and reactivate the water repellent treatment.
Drying a Feather Jacket or Down Jacket
In case of a down jacket, if you don’t have a tumble dryer, go directly to the laundry room or dry cleaner to wash your feather or down garment. A dryer is essential to stir the feathers during drying, and there is no waiting between washing and drying.
Select a soft “synthetic” program (60 ° max) and restart it as long as your garment is not perfectly dry and that it has not regained its loft (count 3 to 5 cycles and, therefore, sometimes several hours).
How to Hand-wash Your Ski Jacket?
- Wash the ski clothes in the tub with warm water with your shampoo or liquid detergent, rubbing with a brush soaked in the laundry, carefully on stains. Rinse with a shower with lukewarm water. Drain between your hands without twisting.
- Sponge the ski garment between 2 bath towels, then let it air dry flat for a few hours, shaking it from time to time to restore loft to the down inside.
- Then hang the jacket or jumpsuit on a hanger. Drying ski jackets this way can take 48 hours.
Our Final Thoughts
Following these simple tips, you can now wash your ski jackets without worrying about damaging them. We recommend that you do not use fabric softeners, chemical stain removers, or bleach as they can damage waterproofing membranes, reducing their effectiveness.
We also recommend not to take your ski clothes to cleaning services as they tend to use much stronger cleaning products. Let’s have a quick recap of the tips to wash ski jackets without damaging them. Read and follow the care instructions on the inside of your jacket.
Do not forget to empty the pockets and close all zippers and fasteners. Use a mild detergent. And dry them out carefully in direct sunlight or according to the instructions.