How to Get the Most Wear Out of Your Rain Gear

by - Tuesday, July 02, 2019

navy rain jacket

Whether you are heading out on a long hike through the forest or you are spending an afternoon splashing in puddles with your little ones, having the right rain gear is important. You need something that will protect you from the rain and, if the weather is chilly, keep you warm. Even on moderately warm days, you can get chilled if you get caught in a downpour and are unable to dry off. While it’s next to impossible to stay 100 percent dry when the forecast calls for rain, there are several things you can do to optimize your (or your child’s) rain gear to keep as much water out as possible. Here are a few tips on how to get the most wear out of your rain gear.

monogrammed hoodie rain jacket

Start with a High-Quality Rain Jacket

When you are shopping for a rain jacket, the cheapest option isn’t always the best. Plastic rain slickers are often made from vinyl, which can be incredibly uncomfortable. When it’s warm out, the vinyl doesn’t breathe and can leave you feeling hot and sticky. And when it’s cold, the material tends to get stiff and doesn’t move well with your body.

Look for a jacket that is water-resistant but doesn’t have a plastic-y feel. This custom rain jacket is an excellent choice. A jacket made from lightweight material that moves with you is much better than one that’s made from plastic. It’s also smart to shop for one that has a lining. This makes it a bit warmer and prevents it from sticking to your skin.

Understand How to Wash it Properly

Good rain jackets are waterproof yet breathable. It takes some serious fabric technology to make that happen. Unfortunately, if you wash your jacket incorrectly, you could end up destroying the technology that helps keep you dry. Most waterproof coats are made from a material that has holes that are small enough for water vapors to pass through, but not larger water droplets. A special finish, known as durable water repellent (DWR) is often applied as well. This protects the fabric from moisture and helps water bead off quickly.

water resistant

When washing your rain gear, always read the care instructions and follow them closely. Also, use a technical cleaner as opposed to your regular laundry detergent. This allows you to remove the dirt and grime without ruining the DWR coating. Despite your best efforts, you still may need to re-waterproof the jacket. This is especially true if you’ve had it for some time as the coating tends to wear off over time. There are wash-in waterproofing agents that make it easy to re-apply the coating to make your jacket waterproof again.

Avoid washing your rain gear too frequently. Doing so negatively affects the quality of the material. Instead of washing your jacket every time you do laundry, just throw it in the wash after several vigorous wears or if it starts to smell. Ideally, you shouldn’t need to wash it more than once per season. Spot clean in between washes to remove dirt and debris.

Dry and Store it Properly

Failing to properly dry and store your rain gear can cause it to deteriorate prematurely. For starters, don’t ever dry it in the sun. In addition to causing the color to fade, the sun’s UV rays can break down the fabric. Avoid storing your rain jacket hung up in a sunny area, too. Always store your rain gear dry. If necessary, throw it in the dryer on low heat (unless the care instructions tell you not to do so). Storing rain gear wet provides the perfect environment for mold–which is detrimental to waterproof coatings and fabrics–so you should never skip the drying step. When not in use, store your gear dry in a storage bin or closet with minimal air circulation.

get the most out of your rain jacket

With proper care, your rain gear can last through several seasons. When you start with a high-quality rain jacket, caring for it is relatively simple. Follow the washing and drying instructions carefully and use technical wash instead of regular detergent. Re-apply the waterproof coating as necessary and always make sure your gear is completely dry before storing it. If you are looking for fun and functional rain gear, Marleylilly can help! Check out our collection of custom rain jackets, rain boots and more today!

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