Does Cotton Shrink in the Dryer?

Author: Mary Beth Benoit
Yes, cotton shrinks in the dryer.

More Info: Although a strong, durable fabric, 100% cotton garments are at risk for shrinking in the washer and dryer.  Today many cotton garments are SanforizedTM , which mean that they are preshrunk using a trademarked process and will not shrink in the wash.  Cotton is often blended with polyester or other fibers that help to make it more shrink resistant.

How Do You Care for Cotton?

Care for cotton clothing is extremely easy and basically worry free. Cotton clothing is highly washable and can be laundered at a variety of temperatures with little worry. If you are intending to wash your cotton garment in hot water, be sure to pre-treat any stains prior to washing as hot water can set some stains including blood and grass stains.  Turning clothes inside out before washing them can help to prevent fading.  Be careful not to dry cotton clothes completely. The fabric will wrinkle, as well as shrink after time. Allowing clothes to air dry is the best way to give them a longer life. Ironing should also be done with the garment inside out.   

How Do You Prevent Cotton from Shrinking?

You can prevent cotton from shrinking by paying attention to care label sewn into the garment.  100% cotton can shrink up to five percent, which is more than one size.  Many of today's cotton garments are either treated and processed or blended with synthetics, which may reduce shrinkage.  Never throw a cotton garment in the dryer without first checking the care label.


Works Cited

Selecting a Blouse

Welcome to Project Cotton at the University of Missouri.
Project Cotton - Care

purplearrowExpert Opinion

Quote:  "Look for the terms "long staple cotton," "Pima cotton," "Combed cotton" and "Cotton Lisle." Pima is a very high-grade of cotton grown in the southwestern United States. Combed cotton undergoes extra processing for smoothness and to retain only the longest and best quality fibers. Lisle is a jersey fabric made from two ply combed cotton yarns forming a fabric that is usually very soft, smooth, and of improved quality."
Source:Buying Casual Knit Shirts Ohio State University Extension.

purple arrowCite this Article

"Does Cotton Shrink in the Dryer?." Sophisticated Edge. N.p., n.d. Web. . <>.  

The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to treat or diagnose any health problems or illnesses without consulting a physician. It is not meant to take the place of health care or services you may need. Please consult a physician with any questions you may have regarding your health.

New! Be the First to Follow Us

Sophisticated Media LLC | Copyright © 2009-2014
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Contact Us
Sophisticated Allure | Sophisticated Blog | Sophisticated Gardening | Sophisticated Manners
Visit Us On: Facebook lTwitter