Coloured clothes in washing machine

What Colours Can You Wash Together?

If you’ve ever pulled a load of washing out and seen a light pink tint to some items that were once a bright and beautiful white, you might want to know what colours you can wash together.

Everyone knows that you shouldn’t wash bright colours with whites, for example, but are there any other rules?

Are there certain colours that when mixed in the wash will turn every shirt you own into a tye-dye shirt fit for wearing to Woodstock?

Well, let’s find out what colours you can wash together and which ones go together like chalk and cheese, shall we?

What colours can you wash together?

Let’s start with the simple stuff. You should sort your washing into lights and darks. White washing should have its own pile. Light colours should be in a separate pile and darks should be too.

You should also have a pile for delicates, these are wools and silks and stuff like that. If you only have a small pile of one, don’t be tempted to throw it in the washing machine with another, this is when accidents happen.

If, for example, you put your lighter load with your dark load, the dark load may ruin the light stuff. This is simply because the dyes may come out of the darker clothes and dye your lighter stuff. This is way more likely to happen if an item of clothing is new, but can still occur with older clothing too.
Woman sorting laundry
The simplest way of sorting washing is sorting your lights from your darks. However, there are other categories to consider too. If, for example, you have a bright pink shirt and a light blue shirt, you should separate these too.

If you have a lot of colours, it is best to split your items into as many colour groups as possible. Reds with reds, yellows with yellows and so on.

We know that not every household has enough washing to make this viable, though. So, where you can, split your washing into groups of similar colours. For example, split your washing into reds and pinks, yellows and oranges, navies and purples and so on.

When you are splitting your washing into these colour groups, make sure to keep your delicates separate from these groups. Adding a wool jumper in with your t-shirts will go bad as they require different washing cycles and different detergents.

One final thing before we leave you to your washing: ensure that you pre-treat any heavily soiled clothing before you wash it. Most heavy stains will require more agitation before a wash.

Some stain removers can also remove a bit of the dye in clothing too, so remember to split heavily soiled items into their colours groups too.

Oh, and one final, final thing, always wash your tea towels, towels and bedding by itself too. Bedding isn’t so much of an issue, but towels and tea towels are. These contain a lot of dye and tea towels are often heavily soiled and will need pre-treatment, which can cause the dyes to run even more than usual.

We hope this look at what colours you can wash together has been helpful. For more helpful washing tips, please check out the other articles on here. We have loads of washing tips and reviews of the best washing machines right here!