By following the care instructions the goods are less likely to be damaged or destroyed and more likely to last for a reasonable period of time.

What goods do the rules apply to?

Most types of new textiles are covered, including:

  • clothing, household fabrics, furnishings, upholstered furniture, bedding, mattresses and bed bases
  • plastics and plastic-coated fabrics
  • suede, skins, hides, grain leathers and furs.

Regardless of whether the good was made in New Zealand or overseas, or was made by machine or hand, it must comply with this standard.

Some textile goods are excluded, including:

  • second-hand goods
  • footwear (except hosiery) and textile materials used to manufacture footwear
  • floor cloths, dish cloths, dusters, cleaning cloths and pressing cloths
  • haberdashery such as elastic, elastic threads, ribbons, zips and velcro-type fasteners
  • jute products
  • goods intended for medical and surgical use as bandages, dressings, sanitary pads, and any materials that form part of manufactured medical and surgical goods.

What are the care labelling requirements?

Care labels:

  • must be legible and in English
  • can use internationally recognised symbols (eg, for drycleaning) to accompany the written instructions
  • must be easy to find by consumers examining the good before purchase
  • if the good requires a permanent label, the label must be able to withstand the care treatment the good requires and should remain readable and attached through the good's useful life.

The label should include:

  • general cleaning and care instructions
  • where appropriate and necessary textile maintenance (eg, air regularly)
  • any warnings against inappropriate treatment (eg, do not tumble dry).

The label must be a permanent label which you can see when examining the item. It must be on the good, or if it is not able to be seen because of the way the good is packaged, displayed or folded, it should also be on a removable label or the packaging.

Some items, such as gloves, hosiery, shower curtains, and serviettes, don't have to have a permanent label but still need care instructions provided.

What other labels are required?

Who do the rules apply to?

Any person supplying, offering to supply or advertising the supply of new textiles that require care labelling information must comply with the regulations.

This includes textile goods for sale:

  • in a shop
  • on online auction sites
  • at markets or stalls
  • in craft shops.
Read more about care labelling PDF (7 MB)

Make a complaint

If you think a product has not got the correct care label, you can make a complaint to us.