Since writing my initial post on hosiery I realize that I’ve left out some more specific details about nylons that may be helpful to others. I come across a lot of product reviews of nylons that indicate that most younger women could use a few tips in their actual use and care.
Tip #1: Consider them to be disposable. There’s a reason that you can buy nylons in basic colors at chain grocery stores. I’ve heard that at best you can expect about 6 months worth of total wear out of any pair of nylons. So when you pay more for a nice pair, understand that you’re paying for a fancy color or design and the higher price won’t guarantee better quality overall.
Tip #2: If you’re going to wash them, there are two things you can do before washing them the first time that may strengthen the fibers. I’ve never done either of these things, so I can’t vouch for whether they work. One suggestion is to soak them in warm salt water, the other is to put them in the freezer. I hear the salt water one more often, so I’d give that one a try.
Tip #3: Actually hand wash them and hang them to dry, don’t put them in the washer or dryer. Just a few drops of detergent or shampoo should do the trick. Some people suggest using conditioner as well. Using fabric softener or vinegar can help preserve the flexibility of the fibers.
Tip #4: Make sure your nails and fingers are free of stuff that will snag your nylons as you put them on. Hangnails, overly rough skin, sharp corners on your nails, chipped nail polish, etc. Put on gloves if necessary to avoid snagging.
Tip #5: Shave your legs before putting them on. It makes them a lot more comfortable.
How to put them on:
Step 1: Sit down. You don’t want to be hopping around on one leg trying to put these on.
Step 2: Take the first leg and gather it up, your thumbs inside the leg and your fingers on the outside. You want to be able to put your toes straight in without wiggling through the leg.
Step 3: Put your toes in while holding your leg close to your body. Slowly move your leg outward, releasing the nylon as you go until you pull it up over your knee. Then stop.
Step 4: Repeat step 2 and 3 with the other leg.
Step 5: Stand up. If they are thigh highs, adjust them to the height you want. If they are full pantyhose, gently pull them the rest of the way up, gently pinching the fabric between your thumb and side of your pointer finger. Never pull with your nails and never pull sharply.
What to do about runs:
Dab both ends of the run with clear nail polish. (This is the standard advice).
Spray the run with hairspray, let dry, repeat. Some suggest spraying the nylons down with hairspray after putting them on in general.
Dab with anything sticky that will dry clear.
I have no personal experience with any of these on account of never having gotten runs in any of my nylons. So let me know how these work if you try them.
That’s about as much advice as I can give on nylons at this point. Here’s a relevant song to finish off the post: