Upset young man holding a shrunken blouse isolated on white background

How to Prevent Laundry Shrinking?

Posted on by & filed under Impressive Cleaners and Laundry Blog.

Have you had that unforgettable moment pulled a much-loved article of clothing from the washer or dryer, only to find that it had shrunk to a size that would prevent you from ever wearing it again? If you’ve ever wondered why clothes go from human to cat-sized after tumbling around in the washer or dryer, you’re not alone. There’s a simple answer – it’s all about fiber, temperature, and agitation.

Heat is not your friend if you’re trying to avoid shrinking your clothes, especially those which are made of natural fibers like cotton, wool, and mohair. When cotton, linen, and some synthetic fabrics are made, their fibers are pulled, stretched, twisted, and stressed. Washing and drying these fabrics let the fibers relax, returning them back to their pre-shrunken state. Wool and other animal fibers are actually hairs covered in microscopic scales that snag one another when processed into fabric. Washing these fabrics too vigorously can cause the scales to tighten together, even more, making the garment shrink or even felt into a solid piece.

 Don’t think that you can avoid shrinkage by simply reducing the heat in your dryer or by using a clothesline. Your washing machine is equally capable of shrinking your clothes, and not just with the wrong water temperature.

Read and Follow Fabric Care Labels

Before you wash take a look at the care instructions on the label. Pay close attention to the recommended water temperature, laundry cycle, and drying instructions.

Use Cold Water and The Proper Wash/Dry Cycles

If you only remember one rule about how to avoid shrinking clothes, remember this: keep it cool. Clothes are much more likely to shrink when exposed to hot water or high dryer settings. Coldwater may not completely prevent shrinking with some fabrics, it goes a long way towards preserving the “off the clothing rack” size. Avoid using heavy-duty cycles or fast spins with fabric that’s prone to shrinkage. Try using delicate cycles instead, and put very delicate clothes in mesh laundry bags for increased protection. When it comes to drying, consider a “low heat” or “air dry” setting.

Leave the worrying up to us. Wash-and-fold can be the best option. The chemicals used in dry cleaning are much stronger than those used in regular washing. We wash according to the preferences you select. We machine wash and tumble dry your clothes in different machines per customer. We neatly fold clothes and wrap them up to be delivered. Schedule today!

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