Ironing does not shrink Clothes. But the wrong way out and procedure shrinks the fabric. Mostly shrinking of clothes occurs during ironing because of excessive heat and pressure. Some clothes materials are also sensitive to heat so wrong pressure and heat, relax the fiber of fabric and lead to the contraction of cloth.
Factors that Lead to Clothes Shrinking During Ironing:
So, here are some main mistakes that shrink the clothes while ironing
Iron produces heat and steam for removing wrinkles from clothes. Most importantly, it is important you know how much specific fabric is sensitive to heat. Natural fibers are more inclined to shrink when exposed to heat, like cotton, silk, and wool. However, Synthetic fabrics are heat-resistant so, less probability to shrink, like Nylon and Polyester.
Steam irons produce steam during ironing for de-wrinkling the fabric. Mostly it is noted that natural fibers absorb moister and a combination of heat and moister relaxes the fiber and causes to shrink the cloth.
Incorrect Ironing Techniques:
Sometimes the wrong way out of ironing shrinks the clothes. Firstly, the most important care needed is to know how much pressure is enough to put on the cloth while ironing. Secondly, avoid ironing the same area for too long. Even if you want to wave off some stubborn crease, it’s better to use the steam shots, instead iron at the same spot for too long.
Tip To Prevent Clothes from Shrinking While Ironing:
Following these precautions and ironing techniques can lessen the risk of shrinking clothes and safely remove creases from your garments.
Adjust heat setting according to Fabric Type:
Use the right heat setting on your iron according to the fabric being ironed. For delicate fabrics lower heat settings are more suitable, while for sturdier materials higher heat settings are needed. When you are confused about what’s the right choice of heat while ironing any specific fabric, start with a lower temperature and gradually increase it if required.
Read the garment labels:
Most garment care labels have instructions and warnings written according to the sensitivity of the fabric. Always check and apply the required temperature to avoid any damage.
Use an Iron Protective Cloth:
It is better to use an iron protective cloth while ironing the delicate fabric. Place in between iron and cloth while ironing to protect the fabric from direct heat and it lessens the risk of shrinking.
Test a small area:
The best approach to avoid any damage to the fabric is to press the small inconspicuous area of the cloth to check whether the cloth shrinks or remains unaffected. Adjust the heat or try an alternative ironing method if the fabric reacts negatively.
Avoid unnecessary pressure:
Apply gentle pressure while ironing and avoid pressing too hard. Let the weight of the iron do the work. If you want to remove stubborn wrinkles, consider using steam to moisten the fabric slightly.
Fabrics That Shrinks With Ironing:
Some fabrics are more prone to shrinkage due to the application of heat and pressure. However, not all fabrics shrink when ironed.
Natural fibers like cotton and wool can shrink when exposed to moisture and direct heat or inaccurate temperature. So, it is best to use pressing clothes while ironing these fabrics to avoid any damage. Moreover, start ironing at a low temperature.
Cotton or wool Blends:
Fabrics that combine cotton or wool with synthetic fibers, such as polyester, may also shrink to some degree when ironed. The shrinkage potential depends on the ratio of cotton or wool to synthetic fibers in the blend.
Rayon/Viscose is a semi-synthetic fabric. It also tends to shrink when exposed to heat and moisture. Lower heat settings and gentle ironing techniques should be used when ironing rayon garments.
Linen is made from flax fiber and is known for its durability. There are chances to shrink when it is exposed to high heat so, a lower heat setting or slightly dampening linen cloth before ironing helps to prevent excessive shrinking.
Final Verdict: Does ironing shrink clothes
It’s important to note that the extent of shrinkage can vary depending on the specific fabric quality, composition, and how the garment was fabricated. Additionally, every manufacturer has a different formulation of fabric, so it is advisable to go through the garment care instruction label and iron or wash the fabric according to instructions.