Clothing Care Symbols

Care labels on clothing have symbols attached to them to help determine how to best clean your clothes. Up until 1998, care labels were required to have written instructions on them. In 1998, that changed, and written instructions were no longer required if a symbol was provided to explain the best way to handle your laundry. We understand that care label symbols can be confusing at times, so we put together a guide to help you understand what the labels mean!

Wash Laundry SymbolLaundry symbols and names

A bucket filled with water represents the wash laundry symbol. Your care label will have one of the following symbols explaining how to wash it correctly:

  • Bucket of water: Normal wash
  • Bucket of water with one line underneath: Permanent press wash
  • Bucket of water with two lines underneath: Delicate wash
  • Bucket of water with a hand inside: Hand wash
  • Bucket of water with an X through it: Do not wash

Bleach Laundry Symbol

A triangle represents the bleach laundry symbol. Your care label will have one of the following symbols explaining how to bleach it correctly:

  • Triangle: Any bleach
  • Triangle with two lines within: Only non-chlorine bleach
  • Solid triangle with an X through it: Do not bleach

Drying Laundry Symbol

A square represents the drying laundry symbol. Your care label will have one of the following symbols explaining how to dry it correctly:

1. Tumble Dry Cycles:

  • Square with a circle inside: Normal cycle
  • Square with a circle inside and one line under: Permanent press cycle
  • Square with a circle inside and two lines under: Delicate cycle

2. Tumble Dry Settings (These refer to the circle within the square above):

  • Circle: Any heat
  • Circle with one dot: Low Heat
  • Circle with two dots: Medium heat
  • Circle with three dots: High heat
  • Solid circle: No heat, air only

3. Air Dry Symbols:

  • Square with an arch at the top: Line dry
  • Square with three vertical lines in the center: Drip dry
  • Square with one horizontal line: Dry flat
  • Square with two lines in the top right corner: Added to one of the top three symbols and means to dry in the shade

Ironing Laundry Symbol

The iron laundry symbol is shaped like an actual iron. Your care label will have one of the following symbols explaining how to iron it correctly:

  • Iron with one dot: Low heat
  • Iron with two dots: Medium heat
  • Iron with three dots: High heat
  • Iron with an X through it: Do not Iron
  • Iron with an X under it: No steam

Dry Clean Laundry Symbol

A circle represents the dry clean laundry symbol. Your care label will have one of the following symbols explaining how to have it dry cleaned correctly:

  • Circle with an A: Any solvent
  • Circle with a P: Any solvent except trichloroethylene
  • Circle with an F: Petroleum solvent only
  • Circle with a line in the bottom left corner: Short cycle
  • Circle with a line in the bottom right corner: Low heat
  • Circle with a line in the top left corner: Reduced moisture
  • Circle with a line in the top right corner: No steam finishing
  • Circle with an X through it: Do not dry clean

Contact Us

At Classic Drycleaners, we understand you may not have the time or desire to do your laundry. Instead of memorizing care label symbols, participate in our wash and fold laundry service. We fold it neatly and return it to you within one to two business days. Contact us today to start enjoying the benefits of wash and fold services!

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