Gold bathing suit on gray sofa cushion with necklace and throw pillow to the side
Can My Bathing Suit Go Into the Laundry Machine? Your Questions Answered for the Best Care

Growing up in Florida, I have gone through A LOT of bathing suits in my life. As kids, when we came in dripping wet from the pool, our practice was simple: Toss the suit in our bathroom sink, fill it up with water to soak, then squeeze it out and hang it to drip dry in the shower.

Now that I have my own kids, and our own pool, I wondered if that was the best way to wash a bathing suit. It sure would be easy to toss them in the laundry machine while washing the towels! Especially, given half of the time I find unrinsed bathing suits on the bathroom floor.

And since bathing suits are not cheap, I wanted to find the best way – not just the easiest – to take care of our bathing suits. Here’s what I found:

Can I Put My Bathing Suit Into the Laundry Machine?

While it’s probably better to hand wash, the answer is maybe. Some manufacturers are using fabrics specifically designed to take the abuse of a washing machine. Check the label to find out if yours can be laundered. Even if so, it’s always a good idea to use a mesh bathing suit bag to further protect the suit, and don’t wash it with heavy items that don’t play well with others, such as jeans or pool towels.

Do I Have to Use Soap Every Time?

No. Turns out, the method we used when growing up is fantastic for caring for bathing suits. Most times, you can simply fill a sink with cool water, soak your bathing suit, then rinse it out to keep it clean and in great shape. 

If My Bathing Suit Needs a Deeper Clean, What Kind of Detergent Should I Use?

A mild laundry detergent can be used to wash your bathing suit, whether you are hand washing or using your machine. Baking soda is also a great option. It will remove odors and freshen up the fabric. To wash your bathing suit with baking soda, fill a sink with cool water and add a few tablespoons of baking soda to the water. Swish it around to dissolve, then soak your bathing suit for 10-20 minutes. Rinse it out well in fresh water, then gently squeeze out excess water and hang to dry.

How Do I Best Dry My Bathing Suit?

Don’t ever put your bathing suit in the dryer. Hanging it to dry is always the best option. Don’t wring it out either, as it can stretch and damage the fabric. Gently squeeze out the excess water, then hang it to dry, or dry flat.

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