This post might contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase using one of these links, we might earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Learn More

How To Shrink Spandex: Step-By-Step Guide

Being one of the most used fabrics out in the market, you can find spandex in almost everything. This, of course, is due to the nature of spandex itself. It can stretch without breaking, which makes it an ideal material for athletic apparel. With all these wonderful traits, it is a huge disappointment when the spandex leggings you just bought do not fit you as well as they are advertised. This will make you wonder what you can do now. Well, luckily, I am ready to answer your current problem. Making sure to provide you with all the necessary information on “How To Shrink Spandex?” this article will certainly help you in your journey.

Before we begin to dive into the steps and procedures that you will need to take to shrink your article of choice that is made from spandex, a cruel detail needs to be looked at. Because most clothes are not made entirely of one fiber, the garment’s blend is important to check. This raises the question of whether all spandex articles can shrink.

Key Takeaways

  • Spandex is shrinkable, but it is important to check the label beforehand just in case the manufacturers have specific requirements for the item.
  • Two main successful methods are used to shrink spandex. The washer and dryer technique and the boiling water technique.
  • When washing spandex, makes sure to turn the item inside out.
  • When drying spandex, it is recommended to put it in a soft pillowcase.
  • After boiling the water for the spandex make sure to take it off the stove so you do not end up boiling the spandex also.
  • Feel free to repeat the techniques as many times as needed to achieve the wanted effect.

Are Spandex Articles Shrinkable?

As we just discussed, articles of clothing may be made out of a certain blend which may affect the shrinking process. But if you are concerned only with pure spandex garments, then there is no need to worry. Pure blend spandex is easily shrinkable under high-temperature water.

On the other hand, to tackle the first difficulty, if your feel like the article you want to shrink is not one hundred percent spandex, you may want to read the label that comes with it. By understanding the tag that is attached to the garment from the manufacturers themselves, you will be fully equipped with the knowledge needed to continue with the task of shrinking spandex.

How Can You Shrink Spandex?

While I am aware that the internet itself is filled with hundreds upon hundreds of suggestions on how to shrink spandex, not all of them are secure. A few might damage your item with irreversible harm.

Spandex is a delicate stretchy material, so I will be providing two foolproof ways of contracting its fibers. By using the power of water in high heat, we will end up with two ways to shrink spandex. The well-known washing and drying machine method and the boiling water one. High-temperature water will be our best bet when it comes to opposing the elasticity of spandex. We can now continue with the techniques without wasting any more time.

Washer And Dryer Method To Shrink Spandex

The main component that will have a long-lasting effect on the article itself here is the washing machine and the drying one, which may seem obvious with the title of the technique as well.

A good precaution step is to turn your spandex articles of clothing inside out. This is a great base rule with any type of garment that will undergo high temperatures. It reduces the risk of any harm that can be done. After turning the item inside out, freely toss it in the washing machine.

Now regarding the settings on the washing machine, it needs to be on the highest temperature possible for that particular washer and the longest cycle available. The high heat and the long cycle that the washer provides will help the fibers in the spandex to relax and then tighten.

After finishing with the washing process, before you transfer the item to the dryer, make that you put it inside a soft pillowcase. It is usually recommended that you use a pillowcase, but this is because of the softness and lightness it has. If you have a similar product to a pillowcase, freely use it. The whole point of putting it in this pillowcase prison is to restrict the spandex from stretching and moving while inside the dryer. Once more, when using a drying machine, the settings should be at the highest temperature and longest drying time.

Now granted it is more than achievable to shrink your spandex by just using the washing machine. It is something that gets done by accident as well. But this extra step of drying it with high heat gives us a more certain outcome.

It is important to mention that sometimes you do not get results on the first try and this is more than normal. It is not your fault; rather, the item itself may be thicker than usual. Due to this, feel free to repeat the technique as many times as you see fit.

Boiling water method to shrink spandex

The boiling water technique uses the same logic as the washing machine. The only major pro of this method is that it may take you less time, and you have more control of the process itself.

To start, you need to boil clean water in a pot. After it starts to simmer and boil it is important to take the pot off the tool that you used to heat it. This is the moment when you put your spandex item in hot water. Let it soak for approximately 10 minutes or until you feel the water go cold. Do not forget to be cautious when working with boiling water.

When the spandex item is finished soaking in the water carefully take it out and put it in a pillowcase and then in a drying machine. As mentioned before the dryer should be on the highest temperature and the longest cycle. If by any chance you do not have a drying machine near you feel free to use a blow dryer. With this last one, it is important to move the blow-dryer and not keep it in one place since it may damage the spandex. This technique, like the previous one, is open to iterations since not everyone may be satisfied with the first outcome

Final Words/Outro

Coming to the end of the article, I hope to have assisted you in the process of shrinking your spandex items. As you can see, shrinking them is not hard whatsoever. But in case you are still not satisfied with the outcome, consider donating your peace’s so other people may enjoy the item you loved as well.

Further Reading

Carry on and read some more of our blogs, for example, there is a blog that answers whether chiffon wrinkles.

Another one tells you what is a serger stitch. There’s also a great comparison of lycra and nylon.