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How to Clean Your Running Gear to Make It Last

clean-running-gear

You pay good money for your running gear, so you want to take care of it so that it lasts for run after run. And part of that is making sure that you clean and care for it properly! Which is why we had to share these tips from our friends at Brooks Running. Yes, we’re a brand ambassador for them, but seriously — no matter what brand you run in — these tips are worth following. They’re straight from the pros who actually make the gear!

How to Take Care of Your Sports Bra: Rebecca duRivage-Jacobs, Associate Product Line Manager at Moving Comfort

How should you wash/clean your sports bras? Hand-washing is ideal, but not always possible. If you plan to machine wash your sports bras, it’s best to use the gentle or delicate cycle and be sure to fasten any hooks or straps to avoid snags. Even better, place your sports bras into a lingerie wash bag. After washing, reshape the cups and hang to air dry. Dryer heat can really take a toll on the fabric. If you must, tumble dry, and we recommend doing so on a low temperature. Fabric softeners and dryer sheets can clog up the fabric and shorten the life of your bra by limiting its ability to wick sweat and resist odors. For best results, use a gentle, lingerie-friendly detergent.

How often should you wash your sports bras? It’s really a personal preference, but two to three wears is okay in between washes.

Approximately how long should each bra last before you need to throw it out? On average, we recommend replacing your sports bra every 6 to 12 months.

How can you tell when it’s time to replace your sports bra? Pay attention to key signals such as stretched bottom band and straps, faded tags, possible chafing spots and a less-than-fresh scent; these are all signs it’s time to replace your sports bra. Appreciate what it has done for you, say your goodbyes, and get fitted for a new style to keep you moving without skipping a beat. At a minimum, we recommend a woman have three sports bras in her wardrobe at a time. Not only will this give her options for different outfits and workouts, but rotating them can extend the life of each sports bra.

How to Take Care of Your Running Shoes, Jena Winger, Associate Product Line Manager at Brooks Running

How should clean your running shoes? We recommend not washing your shoes in a washing machine as it breaks down important components in the shoe (such as DNA, which is the cushioning technology) that help you run safely and comfortably. If you’re looking to remove mud or dirt, we suggest doing so with a toothbrush and some soap. If smell is your enemy, we have a few tips on our blog for reducing the stench.

Approximately how long should each item last before you need to throw it out? We recommend replacing your running shoes every 300 to 400 miles.

How can do tell when it’s time to replace your shoes? Unusual aches and pains which can’t be attributed to a change in your training are a sign that you may need to replace your shoes. The key aches and pains to look out for are knee pain as well as shin splints.

How to Take Care of Your Running Apparel, Lauren Hallworth, Apparel Product Line Manager at Brooks Running

How should you wash/clean sweat-wicking apparel? How often? It’s best to machine wash cold, tumble dry low, unless otherwise marked on the garment. Using a sport or tech wash (Editor’s note: this is one of our fave kinds!) will also help prolong the lifespan of the garment. In fact garments with a DWR coating can be rejuvenated by a round in the dryer on tumble dry low and if that doesn’t work, then washing using a tech wash and dry. It’s best to stay away from fabric softeners and dryer sheets, which can clog up the fabric and shorten the life of your apparel by limiting its ability to wick sweat and resist odors.

Approximately how long should each item last before you need to throw it out? A well cared for garment should still be running strong after 50 home launderings.

In general, if the tag says hand wash, do you really need to do that? Why or why not? If a tag states hand wash, it is because of the delicate nature of the fabric or the type of treatment that has been applied to the fabric. It’s always best to follow marked care instructions.

How can you tell when it’s time to replace the item? Similar to bras, it’s important to pay attention to the signals — stretched bands and straps, faded tags, possible chafing spots, a less-than-fresh scent, etc. are all signs it might be time to upgrade your running apparel.

What tip surprised you? Um, we don’t have to wash our sports bras after every workout? Color us THRILLED! Jenn

FTC disclosure: We often receive products from companies to review. All thoughts and opinions are always entirely our own. Unless otherwise stated, we have received no compensation for our review and the content is purely editorial. Affiliate links may be included. If you purchase something through one of those links we may receive a small commission. Thanks for your support!