Merino clothing is wildly popular among sporty types, especially for people who enjoy activities that involve extremes of temperatures, such as skiing or climbing mountains int he desert. Fabrics woven from merino wool can stand up to days of continuous wear, making them some of the most durable clothes around. However, that doesn't mean you don't have to take care of merino clothing when you aren't wearing it.

In fact, using clothing made from this fabric improperly or failing to wash and store it safely could cause it to age much faster than expected and, in some cases, even become irreparably damaged.

Follow Washing Instructions To The Letter

The durability of merino while you wear it is due to its ability to continuously move moisture away from your body. While this keeps it relatively odor-free for long periods of time, it doesn't mean you never have to wash your clothes. However, washing these garments requires much more care than simply wearing them does.

The fibers of merino wool clothing are incredibly smooth and fine. This contributes to the fabric's softness and light weight, and also ensures that the clothes aren't itchy like traditional wool. However, the fineness of the fibers is a double-edged sword, since it also means rough laundering will easily distort the fabric or cause it to shrink. Scrubbing hard to remove stains or using powerful fabric cleaners can stretch out the merino fibers or even cause them to fall apart.

To maintain the longevity of your merino garments, always follow the manufacturer's instructions for washing. When no instructions are provided or you can't remember what they were, opt for a gentle hand wash. Instead of scrubbing stains hard to remove them, soak them for long periods in gentle detergents instead.

Store Merino Clothing In A Secure Place

Unlike synthetic clothes, those made with merino wool can't simply be hung up in a closet or put into a drawer when you aren't wearing them. The organic fibers of these articles are enticing to moths, silverfish, and other fabric-eating bugs, which will make short work of a merino shirt if you leave it hanging up unprotected for long periods.

The best way to protect your clothing from being eaten by bugs is to store it in sealed plastic clothing bags. Vacuum bags are effective too, but you need to make sure that the plastic is too thick for bugs to be able to chew through it. If you don't want to use any plastic bags, you can also store merino clothing in a sealed box with some moth balls. Just be sure to wash it before wearing at again afterwards, as moth balls tend to leave their smell on clothes stored with them.

Wear Pieces Designated For Your Activities

Merino wool hoodies and other types of clothing come in a variety of styles, weights, and strengths, and the meaning of these designations may vary slightly between manufacturers. Always use your manufacturer's recommendations to choose garments for particular activities. For example, if you plan on going skiing, it's a good idea to seek out merino skiing garments specifically. Usually these are made to resist strain in areas where the fabric will be frequently stretched by common motions involved in skiing.

If you can't find clothing for a particular sport or activity, you can still use the temperature of the area and the strenuousness of the activity to help you choose what to wear. Lightweight fabrics, for example, are best suited to warmer climates and activities that require intense movement. Heavyweight clothing is better suited to low-impact exercises in much colder climates. Heavyweight garments may be more likely to warp during intense activity.

Merino clothing is meant to help you survive and thrive in even the most intense environments. It takes care of you in extreme cold and extreme heat, so you should take care of it, too. When you know how to wash, store, and choose your merino garments correctly, you can ensure they survive as long as possible.