How To Wash Your Bras If You Want Them To Last

Washing Bras

A high-quality bra that actually fits properly is worth its weight in gold. And that explains why many of us are willing to pay quite a bit for one! :-) On average, a good bra should last between six months and two years, as long as you clean and care for it properly! Improper washing can reduce the lifespan of your bra dramatically, so learning how to properly care for bras is one of the best ways to protect your investment!

And that’s exactly what you’ll get from today’s post. From general bra care tips to specific washing instructions, this post is packed with everything you need to know to clean and care for any type of bra!

Washing Bras

How To Clean & Care For Bras

Bras are a delicate item of clothing, and delicate items require gentle care! To clean high-end, lacy, and expensive bras, hand washing is nearly always the best way option. But certain basic types of bras are fine to machine-wash on a gentle cycle, like sports bras, bralettes, and bras without underwire. (You’ll find instructions for both hand-washing and machine-washing below.)

No matter which washing method you choose to use, you’ll want to use cool-to-lukewarm water and a mild detergent. And it’s easy to make a mild detergent for bras and other delicates right at home! Here’s how to do it.

Related:  How To Fix The Most Painful Bra Problem In Seconds

Washing Bras

How To Make A Homemade Mild Detergent For Bras


1 cup hot water
1 teaspoon baby shampoo
1-2 drops essential oils (optional)


Add the hot water, baby shampoo, and one to two drops of your favorite essential oil (if using) to a small bowl. Stir briskly until well-mixed. If using to hand wash a bra (see below), use all of the finished mixture.

Washing Bras

How To Hand Wash A Bra

You’ll need:

  • Mild detergent
  • 2 clean, dry towels

Washing Bras


  1. Pour a small amount of mild detergent (either homemade or store-bought) into a sink full of lukewarm water.
  2. Fasten all closures on the bra, then turn it inside-out and submerge it in the sudsy water. Let it soak for five minutes.
  3. Carefully knead the garment under the water, then soak for another five minutes.
  4. Drain the soapy water out of the sink and refill it with clean, cool water. Knead the fabric again to rinse. Drain and refill the water once more if necessary to ensure that all the detergent has been rinsed out.
  5. Drain the sink, then gently press any excess water from the fabric of the bra. (You just want to squeeze it a bit; avoid wringing it.)
  6. Lay the bra out on a clean, dry towel. Roll the towel up, then squeeze it gently to absorb the remaining moisture from the bra.
  7. Remove the bra, lay it out on a second dry towel, and allow it to air dry completely.

Washing Bras

How To Wash A Bra In A Washing Machine

You’ll need:

Washing Bras


  1. Place the bra in a zippered mesh laundry bag and zip it closed.
  2. Place the bag in your washing machine, and add the recommended amount of a mild detergent.
  3. Run the most gentle cycle your machine offers, then remove the bra from the laundry bag and lay it flat to dry on a dry towel.

Washing Bras

How Often Should You Wash Your Bras?

Most lingerie experts say that you don’t have to wash your bras every single time you wear it. Instead, they recommend that you wash them after 2-4 wearings, allowing each bra at least one day of rest in between each wearing. (Though you may want to wash a bra more frequently if you’ve been sweating a lot or wearing perfumes or lotions.)

If you follow the advice and guidelines I’ve outlined in this post, your bras will surely “support” you for a good, long time to come! :-)

Do you have a go-to brand or style when it comes to bras?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee


Homekeeping Tips

  • The link I clicked on was for “this brand makes the most comfortable bra ever “ I do thank you for the washing instructions
    I’d still like to know about the comfortable bras !!!

  • Is it ok to hang bras up to dry? We’re in a small space right now and there isn’t a place where I can lay my bras out to dry, and I typically wash half or more of them at a time. I have to use the spin cycle so they don’t take days upon days to dry; after they’ve been spun out on the gentle cycle I hang them on the shower bar in the hall bath and they’re dry in a few hours.

  • I just take my bra into the shower with me, wash it with a bit of shampoo and let it drip dry from the shower head. To speed up the drying process, I sometimes roll it in a towel and hang it from the towel rail. My bras last for years before they wear out.

  • I gave up on the mesh bags for my bras. They still got twisted (even though I always clasped them together) and snagged other items in the machine. So now I use a jersey bag with a drawstring that came with jersey sheets I purchased. The bag is totally enclosed, and they wash just as well.

  • I finally found my perfect bra so I stock up when they are on sale. To save room in my drawers I store them in my suitcase and over-night bags that I keep semi packed at all times.

    I have enough in rotation now that I have not had one wear out on me for years. I do use a lingerie bag because it protects the other items in the wash. I let them air dry on a line I have in my laundry room.

    • I bought the circular shape of container , fold my bra so the cups are together and fold in the material on the back . Zip it up [nylon zipper] and make sure the zipper pull is pulled all the way closed, under the elastic , to make sure it doesn’t open in the washing machine. I work out several times a week so wash them after every session.

  • I use the mesh bag method with mine. So easy. Ive had mine for more than a year. Ive also rescued them with the moleskin when my wires start to poke through. I also use the Febreze spray when they get all sweaty and it’s not possible to wash them. I have to go outside with my job and I live in a place where you sweat from everywhere because of the humidity.


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