Are you trying to wash something very dirty? Make sure to whip or shake large, loose debris, then apply a little soap to the heaviest stains and soak the garment in warm water for about half an hour, stirring occasionally. Scrub-scrub-scrub like the rest of your load.
If you want to clean delicate laundry, you want to completely replace the scrubbing with a quick immersion in warm soapy water. Keep similar colors together and soak a few items of clothing for about 15 minutes at a time before putting them in your sink. Do not soak for more than 30 minutes or the colors may run out.
Items labeled "Dry Clean" can be safely hand washed, while "Dry Clean Only" items can be damaged by water.
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