The Best No-Wash and Low-Wash Clothes to Try in 2022: Unbonded Merino, Pangaia, and More

We would all probably like to do less laundry. Adding no-wash clothes or clothes that don’t need to go in the washer after just one use is a way to cut down on your trips to the laundromat, while helping you feel better about your water use and to avoid overwashing. your clothes. Excessive washing can cause fading and shorten the overall life of clothes.

From tech t-shirts to heated base layers to woolen socks, no-wash garments are popping up everywhere. Not only can they save you a few laundry loads, but they can also lighten your luggage for your next trip, all in one piece. no-wash clothes can allow you to wear them for more than one day. If you’re new to no-wash and low-wash garments, here’s what you need to know.

How do no-wash clothes work?

No-wash clothes are usually designed with anti-odor or anti-bacterial features, which help them stay fresh (read: less smelly) longer than standard clothes. Some brands, like Patagonia and lululemonusing textile treatments that contain silver to serve as Antibacterial agent. It prevents bacteria from growing on clothes and, in turn, can help keep odors to a minimum.

Meanwhile, other brands such as Unbound Merino, Allbirds and outdoor favorites smartwool and damn tough make clothes with natural, odor-absorbing fibers like merino wool to achieve a similar effect. Ably Apparel uses filium, an innovative water-repellent treatment that protects fabrics from stains, bacteria and odors. In an innovative approach, the internet’s favorite brand Pagaia actually uses a peppermint oil treatment to simultaneously reduce odor and bacterial growth in some of its garments.

In other words, no-wash clothes work in different ways. Therefore, they can have varying degrees of success when it comes to BO blocking, which brings us to the next point.

Do you still need to wash clothes without washing?

In short, yes, these clothes will need to go through the wash cycle and be sure to read the care labels first. You may need to air dry or hand wash some parts, while others are better suited to cold water cleaning.

You’ll need to clean your no-wash clothes as soon as possible if you’re wearing them for super sweaty workouts or muddy outdoor excursions. But, if you wear them for daily activities or regular trips, you probably don’t need to wash them after each use.

This is what makes no-wash clothes appealing to people concerned about their personal environmental impact: laundry uses a lot of water and energy (especially if you’re washing clothes in hot water). In addition, our clothes eliminate microplastics and microfibers when we run them through the washing machine, which end up in our oceans, threatening wildlife and ecosystems. Using no-wash clothes can mean doing fewer loads and using less water. While buying new clothes isn’t the best choice when it comes to sustainability, saving water is. If you’re looking for a new shirt anyway, for example, a no-wash top won’t need excessive washing or dry cleaning to stay fresh.

Whether you’re packing light for your next camping trip or just want to give your laundry basket a break, this is your sign to try no-wash clothes. Here, we’ve selected some of the best options for no-wash garments currently on the market.

Elizabeth J. Harless