Care Symbols on Care Label Instructions in Europe
The principle of the Care Symbols on care instruction labels is to instruct the user on the best way to treat the textile without damaging it.
The symbols have been designed to be easily read regardless of the language spoken, however there are differences with certain symbols in other continents.
There is no European law on Care Label Symbols, but any instruction provided must be accurate. The new European Regulation (EU 1007/2011) only covers the textile names and the related labelling of textile products (percentage of wool, cotton, silk…).
The Care Symbols, used by the ISO 3758 system, consist of 5 main treatments and shall appear in this order: washing, bleaching, drying, ironing and professional textile care.
Each treatment is represented by a symbol to which extra information is added to define the exact method recommended. This information is the maximal procedure the textile can withstand in order to preserve shape, size and colour.
Extra text may be added to Care Labels such as wash separately, iron on reverse, do not wring…
Care labels may be produced on Printed Care Labels or Woven Care Labels and may also contain your brand, logo, size…
The washing process is represented by a washtub symbol.
- Washtub with number: maximum machine washing temperature (°C).
- Washtub crossed out: DO NOT WASH.
- Washtub with hand: wash by hand, maximum temperature 40°C.
You may find additional lines under the washtub sign:
- No line: normal process (Cotton)
- 1 line: mild process (Synthetics)
- 2 lines: very mild process (Wool, Silk)
The bleaching process is represented by a triangle.
- Triangle crossed out: DO NOT BLEACH
- Triangle: any bleaching agent allowed (you may find letters representing a required bleaching agent in said triangle).
- Triangle with lines: only oxygen / non-chlorine bleach allowed.
The Tumble Drying process is represented by a square with a circle inside.
- Symbol containing one dot: tumble dry at low temperature (60°C maximum).
- Symbol containing two dots: tumble dry at high temperature (80°C maximum).
- Symbol crossed out: DO NOT TUMBLE DRY.
You may also find symbols that represent a natural drying process such as line drying, flat drying… this process is represented by a square with various lines representing the recommended type of natural drying.
The ironing process is represented by an iron symbol.
- Iron with one dot: iron at a maximum temperature of 110°C without steam (steam ironing may cause irreversible damage).
- Iron with two dots: iron at a maximum temperature of 150°C.
- Iron with three dots: iron at a maximum sole-plate temperature of 200°C.
- Iron crossed out: DO NOT IRON
5. Professional Care
The Professional Care Process is represented by a circle which signifies that the textile is to be cleaned by professional methods (dry/wet cleaning).
- Circle with a P: professional dry cleaning in tetrachloroethene and all solvents listed for the symbol F – normal process.
- Circle with a P, underlined: professional dry cleaning in tetrachloroethene and all solvents listed for the symbol F – mild process.
- Circle with an F: professional dry cleaning in hydrocarbons (distillation temperature between 150°C and 210°C, flash point between 38°C and 70°C) – normal process.
- Circle with an F, underlined: professional dry cleaning in hydrocarbons (distillation temperature between 150°C and 210°C, flash point between 38°C and 70°C) – mild process.
- Circle crossed out: DO NOT DRY CLEAN.
- Circle with a W: professional wet cleaning – normal process.
- Circle with a W, underlined: professional wet cleaning – mild process.
- Circle with a W, double underlined: professional wet cleaning – very mild process.
- Circle with W, crossed out: DO NOT PROFESSIONAL WET CLEAN.
Care Instruction Label Rules:
- The symbols have to be applied, whenever possible, directly on the article or on a permanent label.
- The label must be permanently attached to the article.
- The label must be made of a material resistant to washing and all maintenance treatments indicated for the care instruction symbols.
- The symbols must be easily legible and visible
To make your own set of 50 Care Instruction Labels, Label Name offers 3 types of labels in different sizes already set up with the aid of our site: