How to wash a down jacket like a pro

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In the middle of the cold weather, we are dreaming of only two things: a pair of woolly socks on our feet and a down jacket over our shoulders! A down jacket is indispensable in lower temperatures, especially for fans of the mountains or outdoor sports. However, we can come out in a cold sweat at the idea of washing it…. Especially during the drying process, when we start to fear it will never be the same shape again. Here are a few tips for how to best look after your down jacket. Naturally, these tips do not replace reading the labels, although they work for many types of down jackets. 

1) Washing

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The washing is not the most difficult step -quite the contrary! Just be aware that dry-cleaning should be avoided.

You simply need to pop your down jacket into the washing machine with two or three tennis balls or other items of clothing (to allow air to get into the material). Use the cycle for synthetic fabrics and wash at no higher than  30°. Add your usual detergent and run the machine.

We recommend two rinse cycles.

2) Drying

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The down jacket will come out of the machine looking flat and deflated. But not to worry, this can be sorted with a few simple techniques. But note that it is crucial to verify that the jacket is fully dry, because if it is still damp, the feathers will stick together and could become mouldy. Here are two effective techniques:

Tumble drying

The best way to puff your jacket back up again is the tumble dryer (on the program for synthetic fibres). Give the jacket two or three cycles, placing tennis balls and a few other garments with it to air the jacket well, as well as redistributing the lining evenly in the correct places. Also, remember to fluff it out well to make sure the feathers distribute evenly throughout the pockets.

In the fresh air

This takes longer (allow several days), but you can use a clothes rack. Lie the jacket out flat. Be sure that it is exposed to fresh air on both sides. Shake it out and fluff it up regularly to ensure that the feathers are redistributed evenly throughout the jacket. This is the secret to a good puffy jacket!


Never hang your down jacket on a hanger, because while it is drying, all the lining will fall towards the base of the jacket. Another bad idea is to put the down jacket on a radiator or a heat source, and this should be avoided. The only heat source that is good for it is the sun, which dries and puffs up the jacket. Summertime is best for good drying.