The first UK test method to assess the suitability of fabrics and garments for professional wet cleaning has been introduced by SATRA. It can detect problems such as colour change, shrinkage and finishing difficulties before the wet cleaning symbol is used in care labels.

Says SATRA's head of fabric care, Christine Richardson: "Professional testing is vital to ensure that fabrics are suitable for wet cleaning, and that components such as buttons and trims also withstand the process. SATRA can help clothing producers to ensure that their products meet these requirements and will not fail in after-care."

Professional wet cleaning is an alternative to dry cleaning or domestic laundering and uses a very gentle wash programme, plus special detergents to protect fibres. It is particularly useful for removing water-based staining from items such as tailored workwear, raincoats and soft furnishings.