This symbol shows you if the item can be machine washed or if it has to be hand washed. It also tells you what the maximum washing temperature is and what cycle to use when machine washing.
The symbol can also indicate that the clothing item must not be washed. If that's the case it is usually accompanied with an appropriate dry clean symbol.
Can I Wash This Garment?
Some garments, usually the finer ones, needs some extra care when they get dirty. Some of them should not be machine washed while others must be taken to the dry-cleaners for a chemical treatment.
These symbols tells you what extra precautions need to be taken when cleaning the garment.
Machine wash. This symbol is combined with the temperature and cycle marks below.
Do not wash. Usually there is a dry clean symbol with this one.
Using the right temperature is essential for getting the best washing result. Too high water temperature will often destroy the textile or make the colors bleed or fade. Too low temperature may leave the clothing item with stains still on it.
Machine wash cold, 65F-85F (30C)
Machine wash warm, 105F (40C)
Machine wash hot, 120F (50C)
Machine wash hot, 140F (60C)
Machine wash hot, 160F (70C)
Machine wash hot, 200F (95C)
Wash you delicate items using the delicate cycle on your washing machine and
separate from other clothing. You can try putting delicates inside a pillow case
and close with a knot to protect them from the washing machine.
There is four ways you can dry what you have washed. The two most common is in the tumbler and on the line. Some clothing demand more serious drying, like dripping wet hanging on a line or flat drying.
If your clothes demand special drying this is the symbol to search for on the care label. If it's not present you can use line drying and in most cases the tumbler will work as well.
The ironing symbols tells you what the best temperature is for ironing your laundry. If you use a higher temperature than the one indicated on the label you could destroy both the clothing and the iron. If the fabric contains syntetic fibres it can even melt and make a sticky mess of the iron and board.
Some garments must not be steam ironed and there's a special symbol for that. Some garments you are not allowed to iron at all, they will have the do not iron symbol on the label.
Do Not Iron! When you see this symbol, do not iron that item!