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Bleaching Colored Sports Clothing

By Dr. Laundry October 30, 2013

Would it be okay to use bleach on my white baseball pants if they have two blue stripes on the sides?


Is there anywhere on the pants that the blue stripes are hidden? Perhaps the inside at the hem or waistband? It would be great if you could first test the stripes for bleachability. To do this, add 1 ½ teaspoons Clorox Regular-Bleach to ¼ cup water and apply a drop of that solution to a hidden part of the stripe. Wait one minute, then blot dry. No color change means you can safely launder the baseball pants.

Assuming they pass, I would wash them in the hottest water recommended on the care label using detergent and 1/2 cup Clorox Regular-Bleach.

Before you begin, be sure to check the fiber content of the baseball pants first. You need to confirm that there is no spandex (also called Lycra and Elastane) in them because spandex should never be washed with any products that contain sodium hypochlorite, even garments with only a small percentage of spandex. If that’s the case, or if your stripe doesn’t pass the bleachability test, then try pre-soaking the baseball pants in powdered Clorox2® Stain Fighter and Color Booster prior to washing.