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Do I need to tell my customers to wash their discharge-printed garments before wearing?

Answer

Educating your customers on the products they are ordering can go a long way to help your clients understand what they are getting and curb any negative reactions. If you are able, talk to your customers about what they can expect from a brand-new batch of discharge decorated garments. Discharge prints tend to have a bit of a stiff chalky feel when first printed that will soften after the first wash. This alongside the fact that there may still be some discharge agent (ZFS or zinc formaldehyde sulfoxylate) left on the shirts are good reasons for your customers to wash their new garments before wearing.

Discharge agent, while relatively harmless, is still listed as an irritant to skin and eyes in most safety data sheets. Any residual agent should completely wash out after the first machine wash. If your client is selling the garments in a retail setting, I’d recommend sending them out to be laundered and pressed before putting them on the shelf. Customers that want to do this at home can wash their garments on a warm wash and rinse and dry on a delicate tumble setting. 

T&J Printing Supply