How to wash your down jacket in 4 easy steps

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Down jackets are the ideal solution to London’s unpredictable autumn and winter months – they’re warm without being bulky, easy to layer up or down and quick to dry if you get caught in the rain.

Cleaning a down jacket can seem like a daunting task, but if you follow the simple steps below, washing your down jacket will be a straight-forward process, leaving your garment in tip-top condition next time you need to get it out.

NB: Always read the label before cleaning, and do not machine washing fur trim down jackets. Specialist dry cleaners are available. 

1. Choose your detergent liquid carefully

When washing any delicate item it is important to choose a specialist detergent liquid. Woolite for delicates hand and machine wash or Nikwax down wash are the ideal choices. Both are specially designed to deep clean, whilst being gentle on fabrics.

2. Choose the right temperature

Always wash according to care label instructions, but in our experience an easy care or gentle cycle and slow spin does the job. To get out marks and stains it’s best to set the temperature dial to 30 or 40 degrees.

3. Let your garment dry naturally

The drying process will be slow, but it’s important, so be patient. It can take up 4 hours to dry a down coat in a warm room.

Every so often give the garment a shake to break up any clumps that might be forming. The more your coat dries, the easier it will be to remove clumps.

4. Quick blast in a tumble dryer

Once the down jacket has fully dried, pop it inside a tumble dryer on a medium heat for 10-20 minutes. To help fluff the down back to its original form, pop in a couple of clean tennis balls or drying balls.

If you’re drying your down jacket outside of a tumble dryer, allow it to dry naturally on a washing line or on a radiator. Once fully dry you will need to manipulate the down fill to allow its loft to return. Do this by shaking the garment vigorously to separate the down and even it out.

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