Ladies… gentlemen… here we are at yet another blog, and yet another day stuck in our homes following shelter in place and behaving like we should. However, as the United States (and the world) start to open up their economies, we are still exposed when we go into the world, and have to think about more ways to stay safe. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is one heck of a pesky virus; even if you are taking full precautions when out in public like: covering your face, hands, and staying socially distant from others, that may not fully protect you from contracting the coronavirus; in fact, the virus can stick to surfaces and your clothing is one of those surfaces.
So while staying with the times, and considering we are a clothing company, this blog post would be highly relevant, and may even help you take further precautions on keeping you, your family, and friends safe from infection. The more we all participate, the sooner we can all get back to our lives (and yes ladies… that means those guys will be out there creepin once again… and guys the ladies will be out in force) so, without further delay, we present to you proper clothing care, and knowledge, surrounding COVID-19. If we all start taking more precautions, the sooner we can get back to normal life, and having fun again. Seriously. I’m sure even the homebodies are getting restless at this point.
How Long Will Coronavirus Live On Clothing?
We all know very well that COVID-19 is one pesky, resistant virus that can survive a great deal in the open environment to which we live. Viruses, in general, are fragile when outside of a host where they can thrive, and replicate, so naturally their life cycle is a little more vulnerable out in the elements. That being said: How long can Coronavirus last on our clothing? Something that we require on a daily basis to go out and into the world (because being nude is highly unacceptable behavior in public – at home have at it). Well, that question is not exactly easy to pin down, but we can offer some information that may help.
To understand how COVID-19 can thrive on clothing, we first have to breakdown what it requires to survive. The key element may seem obvious to some: moisture. Any material that provides a way to trap moisture within itself give he virus a higher chance of sticking around. For example, according to the New York Times and this Forbes article, research shows that COVID-19 can live on cardboard for 24 hours. This is because that very carboard is made up of materials that can trap in moisture. Clothing is most likely to harbor the virus much like cardboard as it does in face contain fiber like material that is generally absorbent. According to an article on Health.com MD Amesh A. Adalja stated that: “It depends largely on the environmental conditions—temperature and humidity impact the growth of the virus.”
However, there are no hard studies that can conclude the exact time COVID-19 can really live on your clothes. There are situations that will increase the likelihood that the virus will stick around. If your clothing is wet from rain, sweat, or any other form of moisture increase. Throwing your clothing in the laundry machine should also bring about their own precautions. Assure that they are washed in high temperatures (if you are suspect that you have come in contact, a high public place, or other situations where you feel the virus may have had an opportunity to stick to your clothing). This leads us to our next heading.
Can Laundry Detergent Kill the Coronavirus?
Well, frankly, washing your clothing would be a step in the right direction regardless; and you should be washing your clothes regularly you barbarians… we digress. So yes, washing clothes is a good idea especially if you are concerned that the virus may be on your clothing. We are not saying that it will 100% eliminate all possible contagion from your clothing as there still isn’t enough data to support this, but it will help significantly reduce the chance of spreading the virus. Chemicals inside your laundry detergents, mixes with hot water, will not create a very habitable environment for any virus.
Before you do wash your clothing, make sure to handle dirty laundry with disposable gloves to further reduce any risk of passing the virus, should it be on your clothing, to you or other surfaces around you. It is highly advisable to not shake the dirtied laundry as well to risk releasing the particles from the fabric in your clothing, into the air. Additionally, be sure to disinfect clothing hampers after you remove all of the dirtied clothing. Per Health.com The American Chemistry Council has listed items (with detergents included) that they recommend as items that help combat COVID-19 infection.
If you have to use a laundromat please take proper social distancing precautions, use proper face protection, and assure you are using any means necessary to shield yourself from infection.
What Else Should I Know?
Well as far as clothing goes, studies have shown (so far) that it is far easier to contract the coronavirus from a hard surface (like a railing), as opposed to fabrics and clothing. There are obvious reasons for this, and fabric has not been tested thoroughly as of yet. But as clothing is concerned, it is a small bit of relief.
The best way to prevent any sort of infection, and reduce the low chances that the virus will stick to your clothing fabrics, is to practice SOCIAL DISTANCING. Oh yes, like a broken record all over the internet and media we are going to continue vibrating onward that all so used term. But it’s true. Stick to social distancing so the virus wont stick to you, or you loved ones.
If you are interested in seeing how long the virus can stay on other, tested, surfaces and materials; please see the image below provided by WEBMD.
So, although the risk of transmission from clothing is low *breath of relief* if you want to reduce the risk of contamination further, take the proper precautions in washing your clothing.
Good luck out there.