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Ask Amy: How Do I Extend the Life of My Tights?

How should I wash and dry my tights? Any tips for making them last longer? —Cheyenne


Treating your tights with a little TLC when you clean them can help extend their life. The safest method is to handwash them in the sink with cold water and a gentle detergent. But you can also wash tights in the washing machine on the delicate cycle in cold water. Launder them in a mesh, zippered hosiery bag to prevent tangling and snagging, and avoid washing them with dark colors, which can stain your tights. Whatever you do, avoid throwing them in the dryer—heat will warp the elastic waistband, create pilling and break down your tights' elasticity. Lay flat or hang dry for best results.

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Another tip: Make sure your tights are long enough so that they don't rip as you put them on or dance. If you see a snag or run, apply clear nail polish around it (and let it dry completely) to prevent it from spreading. (Hair spray also helps, in a pinch.) Depending on how sturdy your tights are, you may be able to fix small holes with a needle and thread.

Have a question? Send it to Pointe editor in chief and former dancer Amy Brandt at askamy@dancemedia.com.

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