The symbols are protected by trademarks. Their use is dependent on a contract with GINETEX.
GINETEX - The international association for textile care labelling
GINETEX, the International Association for Textile Care Labelling, was first founded in Paris 1963 following several International Symposiums for Textile Care Labelling at the end of the 1950's.
GINETEX has devised an internationally applicable care labelling system for textiles based on symbols. The pictograms used are registered trademarks in most countries and are the property of GINETEX. The carelabelling system gives consumers and textile companies the correct information on the care treatment of textile products. The processes indicated by the symbols will avoid any irreversible damage to the product.
GINETEX defines and promotes the system of care labelling symbols and coordinates its technical background on an international level. The essential technical elements for its implementation are contained in technical regulations. The care labelling system is maintained to ensure that any new technical and ecological developments together with changes in consumer practices are taken into account.
GINETEX has a large number of national organisations as members. These organisations represent the textile and retailing industries and other interested parties concerned with textile care. They include: Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, United Kingdom.