The Important Reason You Should Wash Your Clothes Before Wearing Them

Don't skip this important move.

Clothing in Washing Machine
Photo: Katherine Fawssett/Getty Images

When you look good, you feel good. When you look good in brand-new clothes, you feel really good. While many wash undergarments before wearing, few bother to throw new store-bought clothing in the wash.

Some dermatologists think that's a massive no-no. "I have seen cases of lice that were possibly transmitted from trying on in the store, and there are certain infectious diseases that can be passed on through clothing," Dr. Donald Belsito, MD, a professor of dermatology at Columbia University Medical Center, explained in an article in The Wall Street Journal. "The other infestation I've seen from clothing is scabies." Yikes.

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In addition to these potential issues, think of the countless hands — garment makers, packing staff, shipping personnel, in-store associates, other shoppers — that have touched garments before they make it to your home. Even if you order your clothes online, many individuals have likely pawed your order.

What's more, "clothes are often coated with urea formaldehyde to keep them clean and wrinkle-free during transit," as TODAY reports. Sometimes, even despite regulations, an extra amount of chemicals seep into your clothing, and they can lead to skin conditions, like eczema.

Well, we think sporting our new spring dress tonight will have to wait until tomorrow after all.

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