Cashmere is the world’s most luxurious type of wool, which also happens to make it one of the world’s most expensive fabrics. It also comes with a reputation for being hard to care for. And that reputation is well-earned because for all its luxurious characteristics, Cashmere fiber is incredibly delicate and therefore easily prone to damage if the proper care and attention isn’t applied when washing and drying it.
Therefore, before you buy Cashmere clothing, it’s important that you know how to care for it properly. After all, you don’t want to spend your hard-earned money on an expensive piece of clothing that can so easily be accidentally shrunk when washing and drying it.
Why Does Cashmere Shrink So Easily?
Cashmere is a natural fabric that is made from the wool of Cashmere goats. All wool fabrics are naturally prone to shrinking, especially when they are exposed to heat. But in the case of Cashmere, it can shrink just as easily when being washed as when it’s dried.
How to Prevent Cashmere from Shrinking in the Washer
Most Cashmere garments bear tags that read “Hand Wash Only.” While hand-washing will always be the best and safest option for cleaning Cashmere, the reality is that it can be washed in a washing machine if the right settings are used. This includes setting the washer’s wash cycle to “hand-wash,” selecting “cold water only,” and setting the spin cycle to “low.” You should also only use a specialized wool or Cashmere detergent. If your washer doesn’t have a “hand-wash” option, then you should avoid the washer and gently wash your garment by hand.
The most common reason why Cashmere shrinks when being washed is using hot water. Heat should never be applied to this fabric, and that includes water temperature, because the heat causes the delicate fibers to relax and constrict.
How to Prevent Cashmere from Shrinking in the Dryer
There is no way to prevent Cashmere from shrinking if you put it in the dryer. Even the coolest drying cycle on the dryer will use enough heat to shrink the fabric. Instead, you should only air-dry your Cashmere garments.
While Cashmere’s reputation is that it is incredibly hard to care for, the truth is keeping your Cashmere garments from shrinking couldn’t be easier. Always use cool or cold water when washing it and allow it to air-dry while lying flat, and it shouldn’t shrink.
That said, there are other precautions you will want to know about taking when washing your Cashmere garments by hand and when storing them because the fibers can be damaged in other ways besides shrinking. So, keep your eyes peeled to this blog for all the information you need to know about caring for your prized possession.