Laundry: Color-catching products

FRESNO, Calif.

A white collar with pink streaks. White socks tinged pink. It would be great to wash all your clothes together and not have them look like this.

Consumer Reports' Bernie Deitrick tested the Shout Color Catcher along with the Carbona Color and Dirt Grabber. It claims you can "wash mixed colors with confidence!"

Deitrick washed sure-to-run red polo shirts with white cloths to see how well the products work. You can see both the Shout and the Carbona Cloths turned pink, absorbing quite a bit of the dye.

But how about those white test cloths that deitrick put in the wash? He used this special machine to precisely measure their color levels.

It turns out neither Shout nor Carbona could keep the cloths from turning pink. In fact, the cloths didn't look any better than the wash at the top done without a color-catching product.

"You don't need these products. Your best bet is to separate your colors from your light colors and if you think something is going to bleed, wash it separately," Deitrick said.

In fact, in small print on the back of the box, Carbona actually cautions - "new colored clothing should always be washed separately the first few times."

So there is no escaping having to separate your laundry.

Consumer Reports says deep, intense colors like red, blue, and black are more likely to run. Besides separating dark clothes from lights and whites, it also helps to wash your clothes in cold water.

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