The textile industry uses different fabrics to make clothes. Cotton and polyester are some of the most used, but linen also has a notable presence due to the multiple benefits it brings: it allows you to create breathable, fresh and loose garments that, at the same time, protect you from high temperatures. Therefore, it is an ideal material for summer clothing pieces.
You may have in your closet several garments made with this fabric, especially summer ones. To keep them in good condition and prevent them from being altered in washing, it is important that you pay attention to the most convenient washing systems for this material. For example, does linen shrink when washed or not? This is one of the most frequent questions related to this fabric, so if you want to solve it, keep reading this oneHOWTO article and discover if linen shrinks when washed, if it does so in the dryer and how to wash it correctly.You may also be interested in: Does polyester shrink if washed?Index
Does linen shrink when washed or given of itself?
Linen is a great fabric for summer clothes , but it contains specific laundry needs. If you have doubts about whether flax gives of itself, take note that it does very little with use. In fact, linen will always shrink in the first wash you do and will never reduce its volume again if you follow the corresponding instructions.
Therefore, do not worry if your garment made of this fabric has shrunk after the first wash because it is one of its characteristics. Afterwards, it will give itself a little and keep the same shape . In this sense, there are two alternatives: washing the fabric pieces before creating or making a garment or, alternatively, buying pre-washed linen to make the fabric pieces, that is, when it still needs to be spun. This is how the manufacturers of these pieces of clothing help prevent them from shrinking after their first step through the washing machine. However, you can buy pieces of linen that have not been treated or have been very little and, therefore, can still shrink somewhat. In this case, make sure you buy a size up or that your size does not fit too closely.
Does linen shrink in the dryer?
After washing clothes made with linen, it is important that you know how it should look to stay in good condition. A priori they should be dried and then they could be stored in the closet, but this fabric has certain peculiarities. First of all, it should always stay a little damp . You can hang it out, but it’s essential that you pick it up before it dries completely. Otherwise, you will lose what little flexibility you have.
Another aspect that you should avoid at all costs is the use of the dryer . Linen is incompatible with this appliance: as it contains minimal natural moisture that moves between 6 and 8%, it cannot be dried at such high temperatures.
If you were to dry the linen using a tumble dryer, its fibers would be brittle and would take many hours to absorb all the moisture it would have lost from the air. Only then could it partially regain its flexibility, but the garment could be a little shrunk and hopelessly. Therefore, never use the dryer for linen garments because this material needs to maintain the percentage of humidity indicated above to remain in its original form.
We recommend reading this other article on How to dry clothes without a dryer .
How to wash linen clothes so they don’t shrink
Do you not know at what temperature to wash linen ? On the one hand, whites and clear of this fabric the wash must to a maximum temperature of 60 or C . On the other hand, colored garments require a lower temperature to be washed correctly: about 40 o C is enough. In addition, colored clothing requires the application of a specific detergent for delicate garments that does not contain a bleaching effect.
Taking into account the right temperature to wash linen clothes , you are already closer to knowing how to do it correctly and without fear of shrinking. To finish discovering all the details of the procedure, at OneHOWTO we recommend that you follow these tips on how to wash linen clothes :
- If you want to hand wash linen garments, use a specific detergent for delicate clothes and a considerable amount of warm water (between 30 and 40 o C approximately). It is important that you rinse the garments twice with clean water and, in those that are white or clear, use a bleaching detergent stain remover. To avoid possible damage to the fabric, do not soak clothing.
- If you are going to wash linen clothes in the washing machine, separate those clothes in your closet that are made of this fabric and run a program for delicate and short cycle clothes using a mild detergent.
- Make sure there are no traces of soap or detergent on your clothes. Otherwise, those marks will turn into dry spots.
- Eliminate stains on linen clothes immediately. Do not wait to wash that stained garment with the rest because, in general but especially in this fabric, the easiest way to get rid of stains is when they are recent.
- Being a delicate fabric, avoid getting caught in the washing machine at all times, as the fiber will be seriously damaged when you try to unhook the garment.
- Remember to hang linen clothes and collect them before they are completely dry to keep them in good shape and, also, always avoid using the dryer to dry clothes made of this material.