Cleaning, drying, storing & shining chlorinated latex
You will find other recommendations around the internet, most of which are generally okay; Here's what we recommend.
After a short use sponge down and pat dry with a towel. Leave to dry to the air before storage
After lengthy use or several short uses wash in warm water with mild soap such as baby shampoo or dish soap. Rinse in clear water, drain, pat dry with a towel and leave to dry to the air before storage.
After several lengthy uses, or a large batch to clean, or to remove silicones, polishes etc.
Consider using a washing machine. This is based on a font-loading automatic machine. We have not used a top-loader so cannot recommend it.
Turn garments inside out.
Close zips and fastenings.
Place inside washing machine
Small items or articles with sharp attachments like buckles should be placed inside pillow cases, then placed in the washing machine.
Close washing machine door.
Put laundry liquid in the soap tray as sold for 'Delicates/woollens' or similar.
Set the temperature to min/30degC
Select a short, gentle programme
Turn the spin to 'off'
(Someone did a spin with a catsuit - the weight of water inside one leg blew a hole in the sock!)
Run the machine.
When finished, open the machine door and carefully remove the garments. They will contain water so be prepared against spills etc.
Drain the articles, pat dry and leave to dry to the air.
Latex might be waterproof, but it is also porous and water can get right inside the latex. You may notice pale patches after washing or sweating, translucent latex may appear cloudy - do not panic - simply leave to dry thoroughly - overnight for example - and the normal colour should return.
When wet, latex is much weaker so take extra care when removing sweaty latex clothing or handling washed latex.
After washing, leave to drain on washing line, over bath etc. Don't strain the garments
You can dry gear on the washing line, outdoors. This is rather nice, but excessive exposure to bright sunlight can cause colour fading - best on a cloudy, breezy day or in the shade.
Let the garment dry right side out first. Then turn inside out to get the inside dry. For good measure repeat those 2 steps again. You'll find what works best with experience.
If you can't dry outdoors, just do the same but indoors.
You can help things along if you pat the garments with a towel.
Some people dry gear over a radiator, though this isn't recommended.
Some people hurry drying by using a hairdryer. Make sure the glued seams are not under tension when you do this. Useful for inside pockets etc. Don't burn yourself. Not greatly recommended.
Preparing for storage
Your latex is clean and dry. If it is chlorinated you can go straight to storage as it won't stick to itself :)
If it's not, then it might be a self-stuck mass - so read on ...
What did you use last time to dress in your latex? Powder, lube, dressing aid?
Well that's what you need to coat your latex in now, so it doesn't stick to itself in storage.
(If you let it self stick and leave it a long time, it may rip when in future you try to prise it apart)
Once your items are ready for storage, here are some ideal conditions to store them:
(you may vary this according to your resources and local conditions)
Ideally, hang garments on plastic or unpainted wooden hangers, with no sharp edges and nice sweeping curves. Some say heavy garments will stress the shoulders/whatever in contact with the hanger so either fold the lower part of the garment over the hanger too, or increase the radius of curvature by padding the hanger with soft cloth. Experience will help.
Other items should be stored in bags, ideally air and light proof. You can store more than one article in a bag, but don't mix dark colours with light ones. Any metal parts likely to come into contact with pale latex during storage should be kept separate from the latex using tissue paper for example.
Bagged items can be kept in a cupboard or drawer. Hung items on a rail. The storage space should ideally be cool, dry and dark.
Reality is often far from ideal conditions - use our guidelines and your judgement to obtain the best compromise.
Avoid storing in sunlight, in damp, draughty, variable temperatures. Avoid contact with other latex in strongly contrasting colours. Avoid metals and avoid jelly plastics as used in sex toys etc.
Chlorinated latex usually has a nice gentle shine and many people are happy with this soft, smooth finish. Clean, dry chlorinated latex can be put on, or stored without any problem. Some people want that extra shine though and should consult online groups to see the lengthy arguments about what is best, but generally whatever works on plain latex also works on chlorinated.
To help you understand the world of polish, here is some guidance.
Most polishes are based on silicones, and give a good shine.
You can pay a lot of money from a specialist shop, or buy something like Autoglym Vinyl & Rubber Care from an automotive shop.
Make sure your silicone polish contains no petroleum distillates as this can melt the glue (it will be stated on the ingredients if present)
Make sure you discover how to remove the polish - before you put it on - for proper cleaning and hygiene, and in case you ever need a repair
Use a product that you can apply with a cloth - a spray will make your floor dangerously slippery or waterproof your dog
Do not use a product that you drop into a bath of water and drag your garment through - this will coat outside and inside of the garment and bury the carefully chlorinated surface under a layer of slime till you can work out how the heck to get it off again!
Errors and omissions excepted.