So you’ve bought that Sisterhood-of-the-Travelling-Pants-level-life-changing pair of jeans and understandably, you can’t wait to put them on at the first possible opportunity. But hold it right there – put them straight in the wash. The extra 24 hours you’ll have to wait will be totally worth it, according to one expert.
Donald Belsito, a professor of dermatology at Columbia University Medical Center, says that wearing unwashed store-bought garments can result in skin irritation, scabies, lice and fungus. We bet you’re flashing back to every bit of clothing you put on, straight off the rack.
"I have seen cases of lice that were possibly transmitted from trying on in the store, and there are certain infectious diseases that can be passed on through clothing,” Belsito told The Wall Street Journal. "The other infestation I’ve seen from clothing is scabies."
And it’s not just the dressing room that poses a danger when it comes to contamination – your garment has been handled by many manufacturers, shippers and store stockers before it has hit your hands.
Plus, clothes are often coated with urea formaldehyde to keep them clean and wrinkle-free during transit and an excess of these chemicals – which can occur despite strict regulations – can cause skin conditions like eczema.
It's better to be safe than sorry, put the pants in some suds.