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Girl Wash Your Jacket:  Caring for Technical Outerwear 

Posted by Alpinistas on Aug 15, 2021

If you are having as much fun with your technical outerwear as we are then you will need to spend a few minutes every so often caring for it. Despite being multilayered space age synthetics materials there’s nothing overly technical about caring for your technical clothing. In all honesty it’s probably easier than your daily laundry.

The first and most distressing event that might happen with your technical gear is that it will stop being completely waterproof. No! You don’t have to buy a new jacket or even re-treat it. The first thing you should do is wash it. Yes, I know it sounds crazy but here’s what’s going on.

Your jacket is composed of multiple layers of synthetic material that helps block rain. We wrote about that more right here. When these layers get clogged with dirt, sweat, sunscreen, or even smoke it will actually pull moisture into your jacket instead of away. By the way, you read that right; smoke and the soot from smoke will ruin your waterproofing faster than anything else.

Wash your technical jackets with a mild detergent or something made specifically for outerwear such as Nikwax, on a medium heat wash cycle. After washing, put it in the dryer on a medium to low temperature for at least 30 minutes. I know it’s a little nerve wracking to put a loved article of typically expensive clothing in the dryer, but trust me it’s what the companies recommend and it's pretty much the only way to revitalize that fabric.

If your jacket has had several washes and or is well worn in certain areas it’s wise to get a waterproof treatment. Waterproof treatments are available in two forms. Spray-on, or wash-in.


A wash in treatment will cover everything so it’s best for technical jackets without liners. Adding treatment to liners will reduce the ability to wick moisture from your body and you will have a wet inside rather than a wet outside.


Spray-on is more time consuming since you will have to cover the jacket yourself. Spray-ons do shine when you have a specific area that needs to be treated like the shoulders from backpack wear. Use spray-on when the jacket is still damp and after treatment toss in the dryer just like you would after a wash.

Should you have a rip in your jacket then we recommend Tenacious Repair Tape or Noso to patch up the rip. Do your best to clean the area so there is maximum adhesion. Lay your jacket down flat and smooth out the area as best as you can. When cutting the tape leave a centimeter or two all the way around the area so the tape can grab as much material as possible, another tip is to round off the corners to avoid them pulling up at a later date. After the tape is applied gently rub the area or use a hair dryer on low heat to warm the tape and give the glue some extra tackiness.
Caring for a technical jacket can seem daunting but it’s no more confusing than any other item we own.

Take care of your gear and it will last for many seasons.

If you have any questions about gear, email our team at for specialized support.