Please reconsider the sniff test! (or "How often should you dryclean your clothes?")

Studies have shown that 93 percent of what is believed about people in business is based upon visual messages, not on credentials or on the content of conversation. 

An invaluable resource for today's job market, How to Gain the Professional Edge, Second Edition helps readers answer a multitude of questions about behavior, attitude, and image to improve professionalism and open doors to advancement and career success. According to Susan Morem, the author, "your clothing is the first thing others notice about you. Make sure your clothes are clean, pressed, mended and fit well.

Look sloppy and you are sloppy. 
Look like a pro and you are one. 
It's that simple. 

You are what you wear! I was listening to NPR the other day, and they cited a study where over 50 percent of men use the Sniff Test to determine if a garment can be worn another time. If it doesn't smell bad, wear it again! Sounds reasonable.

However there are potential pitfalls to the sniff test . . . - I is true that perspiration can air out over time, so the odor may dissipate. But just because you can't smell it, doesn't mean you should where it! The alkalinity of the perspiration can greatly weaken a shirt to the point of tearing. Washing a shirt after every wear, or a hot day, may actually increase the life of your garments. - even if you can't see the soil, it will attract insects. That will end in holes and a shorter life for your garments - after a time stains can set making the garment unwearable - just because you don't smell anything, doesn't mean it doesn't smell. We are accustom to our own smells, and stop smelling them after less than a minute. Others, can still smell them! So what to do?

First, drycleaned clothes should be cleaned with the same frequency as washable garments. After all, they are subject to the same soils, and odors as the washable items. Second, run through this checklist to see if the garment is ready to wear;

is it:
  • Odor free? 
  • Stain free? 
  • Lint free? 
  • Fit properly? 
  • Well pressed? 
  • No tears or seems open? 
The moral of this story?  Preventative maintenance is a requirement for extending the life of most consumer products . . . and your wardrobe is no different!


Reagan said...

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Thanks and have a great day!

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