Cotton fabric will be the first option that may come to your mind when it is about comfortable clothing. In fact, no other textile options will have the ability to make the wearer so comfortable during humid conditions. This breathable fabric will not stick on to your body like other fabrics do, in turn making you sweat even more. No wonder, most people opt for cotton clothing during the summer season. However, there is a big downside to cotton clothing – fabric shrinkage.
Actually, this is not just the case of cotton garments alone. Rather, fabric shrinkage and stretching after the first wash is a common fabric issue.
You may have noticed that your perfectly stitched cotton dress does not fit you anymore after the first wash. Now, most people may jump into the conclusion that you have put on weight. Actually, this is because of the fabric shrinkage process. Note that a good amount of tension is applied to almost every fabric during their manufacturing process. When you wash your textile, this tension is released making your apparel shrink.
This will be worse when it comes to light cotton materials. Hence, it is always better to choose heavier cotton fabrics if you want to stay away from such shrinkage issues. Nevertheless, some heavier cotton is also prone to shrinkage because of their weaving pattern. Below are some of the brilliant tips that you may consider in order to tackle the shrinkage issues of your cotton fabric.
Always Wash your Cotton Clothes Using Cold Water
Washing cotton apparels or any other fabrics using hot or warm water will speed up the shrinking and stretching process. Hence, it is recommended to wash your clothes using cold water. Additionally, take care to go with delicate and slow wash cycles.
Consider Pre-Shrunk Cotton
As the name indicates, pre-shrunk cotton is already treated or washed cotton material. This will reduce the shrinkage issues of your clothes by up to 70%. Hence, this will be a great choice if your cotton dress shrinks too much. Alternately, you may consider options such as cotton and polyester blend that offers minimal shrinkage when compared to the conventional cotton fabrics.
The way you wash and dry your clothes also have a huge impact on its shrinkage and stretching issues. The best way to avoid maximum damage on the first wash itself is to rely on air drying rather than machine drying. For this, you may hang your garments on a cloth hanger or you may simply stretch it out on a flat surface. If you cannot air dry your clothes, you may machine dry them with lower heat settings.