A new, brightly colored swimsuit can make you feel like the belle of the beach, but all that sun worshipping and frolicking in the sand can really take a toll on the fabric. Pool lovers risk swimsuit damage as well, since chlorine will prematurely fade most colors. Don’t let your beach towel outshine the shade of your suit. Take a few minutes to protect and clean the fabric so your swimsuit sparkles as brightly as the water.

Step 1

Treat new swimsuits in vinegar before wearing them to set the dye in the fabric. Fill a sink with 4 inches of cold water and add 1 teaspoon of white vinegar. Insert the swimsuit into the water and submerge it completely. Wait 30 minutes and then rinse the suit in clean, cold water.

Step 2

Rinse the swimsuit immediately after getting out of the pool or ocean. If possible, remove the suit and rinse thoroughly with fresh, cold water to remove the salt or chlorine residue. If you leave the suit on, stand under an outdoor shower to remove as much of the residue as possible.

Step 3

Hand wash the swimsuit as soon as possible after wearing it. Fill a sink with cold water and add one capful of a detergent designed for delicate fabrics. Insert the suit into the water and agitate it gently with your hands for two to three minutes. Rinse in cold water to remove all soap residue. Do not use standard laundry detergent since these are too harsh and may further fade the fabric.

Step 4

Open a white or light-colored towel on a flat surface and lay the suit on top of it to air dry. Do not lay or hang the suit in the sun to dry, since this will cause fading.