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How to Wash Polyester

Polyester is a durable fabric that holds up well against wear and tear. Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that you won’t encounter the odd stain or two, meaning you’ll need to give your clothes a wash. You may be wondering if you can wash polyester - knowing how to get rid of a stain quickly can be invaluable if you accidentally get some chocolate frosting on your favorite shirt!

How to Wash Polyester

Washing polyester– step by step 

  • Step 01: Depending on the color of your garment, choose the right Persil® detergent and a stain remover. Normally, polyester can be washed with a general-purpose detergent.
  • Step 02: If there are any especially tough stains, pre-treat these first by brushing or scraping off any debris, and then applying some stain remover to the area. Let it sit for a bit for a better effect.
  • Step 03: To get squeaky clean polyester material, wash the garment at the highest temperature allowed as per the care label. You will find the information on the care symbols here.
  • Done! After washing, check that any stains are completely removed. If not, repeat the washing process.

Top Tip from our Professionals: When washing polyester, always check the exact material composition of polyester clothing. Mixed fabrics, such as with silk or other sensitive materials may require a more gentle delicates washing process.

Can polyester be washed?

Yes! Polyester is extremely easy to clean and is quite resistant to most stains that usually occur when a fabric absorbs liquid, for example. In fact, sweat, blood, and deodorant stains can be washed out easily, if they occur at all – water-based liquids are generally not properly absorbed by polyester synthetic fibers. Amazingly, it is resistant to most chemicals and even to mold – an impressive material!

However sometimes your luck might run out, and you could get some grease or oil on your favorite polyester pants. Grease and oil cling to the polyester fibers and are therefore difficult to remove. In these cases using a special stain removal product such as Persil® ProClean® Stain Fighter, can be the best plan of action.

Machine washing polyester: Removing stains 

Here’s our polyester washing instructions for how you can wash polyester and remove stains on polyester clothing successfully.

Pick the right detergent and stain remover

The fabric and color of a garment determine which detergent you should use. When washing polyester, you can be sure that the garments are colorfast in most cases, in which case you can use your daily Persil® everyday detergent to remove all types of stains. 

Pre-wash treatment

Which pretreatment you use depends on the type of stain. For most normal stains, scrape off any solids with a spoon. Then dab with a clean, cloth until there is no more debris. Liquids should be soaked up with a clean cloth. Greasy or oily stains can be removed with Persil® ProClean® Stain Fighter. Apply your chosen stain remover, and let it soak into the polyester fibers for a few minutes and then wash your garment as usual.

Washing and rinsing polyester

Wash at the warmest temperature possible for your garment. You will find the instructions on the care label. Use the detergent dosage for "heavily soiled" laundry.

Check on the stains

Always check that the stain is gone before drying – you might need to repeat the wash if the stain is still there. Dry heat could set a stain, so avoid drying clothes in a dryer until the stain is gone. Repeat the steps described above.

Difficult stains in polyester fabrics

Although polyester garments are durable, some garments are not made of pure polyester. Sometimes polyester is combined with other types of fabrics such as silk, wool and rayon. This changes the structure of the polyester. While it makes the more delicate fabrics a little more robust, the stain resistance of the fabric decreases. Hand wash these or use the “Delicates” setting on your machine.

Removing old stains on polyester

Don’t worry if you’ve left it a little late. Old stains can still be removed from polyester. When washing polyester with an older stain, soak it in a mixture of warm water and detergent for a while. This will loosen the stain so that you can pre-treat it, and then follow the steps above on how to wash polyester.