How To Care For Your New Shapewear

We all know how much an investment recovery and shapewear are. Quality costs upfront, but the cost per wear is small because custom-made garments are longer lasting than mass-produced counterparts. As with any high-quality clothing or undergarments, the garment’s lifespan is directly related to how well you care for it. Now, you may wonder how I take care of my shapewear? 

These pieces last a lot longer than lower quality shapewear brands through regular care, which explains the slightly higher initial investment. ContourMD’s custom-made recovery garments and shapewear are guaranteed, but they last longest when cared for properly. While the garments themselves should last a long time due to their quality, their lives are extended even further when cared for properly. Taking care of your recovery or shapewear helps ensure it stays compressive, elastic, and comfortable for the garment’s lifespan. 

Wearing Shapewear for Longevity 

If you wear shapewear every day, not just on special occasions, it’s best to have at least two pairs of shapewear to alternate between them and have a team to wear while the other is being washed. We recommend two in your favorite shade and an extra for dressing-up needs.

By giving the fabric a day to “recover” and regain some of its elasticity between uses, you extend the elastic’s life and the garment as a whole. While it may seem counterintuitive, having multiple pairs of a garment will extend the life of each garment individually. Think about your shoes. The ones you wear daily break down quicker, those that get rotated out have a longer lifespan. Same for the elastic in your shapewear, you place less stress on the garment by not wearing them daily. 

It’s essential to remember that shapewear counts as an undergarment, even if it’s worn over your standard undergarments. Because it has direct contact with your skin, the oils and dirt expelled by your pores tend to break down the fabric, so you’ll want to wash them every 1-2 years. This is for sanitary reasons; they absorb the sweat from your body and can develop an odor; this also extends the garment’s life by removing the oils that break down the elastic. 

Washing Shapewear for Longevity 

You absolutely can and should be washing your shapewear regularly. As we mentioned, every 1-2 years, you should be giving them a clean. It doesn’t have to be an intense spin on the industrial cycle, but just a quick and gentle wash with your delicates. We recommend a mesh laundry bag to keep snaps, hooks, and zippers safe.

How to Wash Your Shapewear 

  1. When machine washing, use a detergent for sensitive skin to prevent unexpected reactions.
  2. Please wash by hand in the sink, but as we all know, this takes a lot of time. It will extend the life of your pieces, but you may not have the time to dedicate – gentle cycle is delicate but using the mesh laundry bag is best in the machine. 
  3. Your washer will automatically use COLD water for the gentle cycle but rinse cold or at super low temperature if you’re washing by hand. Do you know how dermatologists recommend rinsing your skin with cold water after washing your face to close your pores and keep your skin elasticity? It’s pretty much the same principle here.
  4. Pro tip: don’t use the spin cycle or twist the garments to ring out water! They need to drip dry. 
  5. Whatever you do, please do NOT put your shapewear in the dryer. It breaks down the fabric and alters the appearance of the clothing, but it also ruins the elasticity and compressive factors that shapewear has to offer and can warp the garment. 
  6. No one wants to look lumpy; that’s why we buy shapewear in the first place, so please, don’t dry the pieces in your dryer. We recommend having more than one piece of shapewear if you are a daily user, so your other elements have time to dry flat. 


It might seem like a significant commitment to care for your shapewear, but in reality, this is how your regular undergarments should be managed for. If you’re one of those notorious “once month bra washers,” this is your sign of stopping that habit and getting into the good one of 1-2 wears per wash. Your garments will thank you & so will your clothing budget.

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