Unless you're a diehard year-round skier, you're likely thinking about storing that winter gear for a few months. Or if you've already put your apparel away, you might want to re-think how you went about it. Our VP of Design and Development, Pia Halloran, has been in the business of making outerwear for over 10 years. Below are her care and storage instructions and tips to keep your outerwear and mid-layers functioning and looking their best, season after season.
With proper garment care, you'll see longer and better performance from your Strafe product. Follow the instructions below to wash and store your gear.
Wash in cold water (if your gear is really dirty, wash it in warm water) on gentle cycle. Use a detergent that is specifically made for waterproof outerwear or insulators, respective to the garment you are washing. Close all zippers and loosen any draw-cords. Never use normal liquid detergent or hot water, as both can destroy the membrane and the glue that holds the seam tape. We recommend Grangers maintenance products, which provide a range of products for all types of technical gear.
Hang to dry. Or, to reinvigorate the product's DWR (Durable Water Repellent), place it in the dryer on low for about 10 minutes and then hang dry. Never dry on high or for very long as you will destroy the seam glue and your garment.
Hang clean outerwear in a closet. Avoid putting your hardshells in plastic bins and suffocating your insulators by leaving them squashed in a bag somewhere.
PIA'S PRO TIPS
HARDSHELLS: Spot-cleaning with regular soap and lukewarm water is a great way to keep your gear looking fresh between washings.
Breathable, waterproof membranes get clogged with dirt and oils over time and loose their breathability. Regularly cleaning your waterproof shells with maintain their performance.
Additionally, wearing and washing a garment eventually erodes the fabric’s water repellency treatment, DWR. To reinvigorate the DWR after washing, throw the garment in the dryer on low for about 10 minutes and then hang dry. Additionally, reapply the DWR via detergent or post-wash treatment.
INSULATORS: If polyester fibers or down feathers remain compressed for extended periods, they will not be able to bounce back and become as lofty as they were when they were new. The loft between the fibers is what keeps you warm, so don’t leave your puffy crammed at the bottom of your pack or in its stuff sack for the summer. If you’ve already made this mistake, you can try to fluff it back up by putting it in the dryer on low; and with a tennis ball, if it’s down fill. Different insulation types follow the same wash-and-dry steps, but you’ll need a specific detergent for down and polyester-fill jackets.
HOLES OR TEARS: We recommend using fabric patches with glue (not heat) rather than trying to stitch the tear, which can create holes. Or better yet, get in touch with our customer service team to coordinate a professional repair with us in-house or one of our trusted partners.
ZIPPERS: A sticky zipper can usually be fixed with a wash, but if you're still having issues, try a zipper lubricant or wax. Never yank or force a zipper to close. Zippers are often the first ingredients to fail and hardest to repair on a piece of apparel, so pay close attention to them.