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Ankara has become a fashion trend for many women in Nigeria.
One thing however peculiar to Ankara lovers at large is the issue of how to care for the fabric.
Like with most prints (or clothes in general), how you care for your prints will be reflected in how long they will be available to serve you. Aside from ensuring you don’t mix up clothes with different colors in one load on your wash day, many have no clue that there are other (special) ways to care for their prints,
While it may seem difficult, here are some general tips to follow to maintain the colour of your fabric to make it last longer.
1. Do the test before washing
Whilst the running part is most common amongst low-budget African Prints, you might want to test to see if your African fabric would run to avoid stories that touch.
You can do this by immersing a tiny piece in water for a minute or two and squeeze it out; you would confirm that it is a running fabric if the water that comes out changes in color.
2. Don’t wash with detergents
Avoid using detergents to wash your fabric as much as possible, instead use a mild soap. Detergents tend to make your fabric fade away because of its harshness.
3. Handwash your Ankara
It is preferable you wash your Ankara with hands. Washing machines and dryers can be extra hard on the material and ruin it.
4. Avoid washing them everytime you wear
As much as possible, avoid washing your Ankara fabric everytime you wear them unless it’s compulsory. Unnecessary regular washing tends to make it fade away quickly.
5. Avoid leaving in the hot sun for too long
We all know that the sun has been harsh for a while. Spreading your Ankara out in the sun for a long time will definitely leave it faded.
Also, avoid wringing or twisting them to dry as this will only compromise the rich colours of the fabric and cause them to fade quickly.
6. Avoid bleach and use baking soda instead in case of stains
In the case of stains, it is advisable to always treat only the area that has stain with baking soda or an alternative that is not as harsh as bleach to get rid of stains on your Ankara fabric.
There are also occasions whereby you just need to treat only the spots or areas that need to be cleaned and let it air dry.