How to Get Rid of Pilling on Clothes

Pilling on clothes is an annoying and common problem that can occur with any type of clothing, but it’s especially noticeable with cotton.

Many people don’t know how to get rid of pilling on clothes without having to replace the garment. It seems like a waste to throw out something just because it has a little bit of pilling or lint. 

Fortunately, there are ways you can remove those unsightly pills from your favorite sweaters, shirts, and coats so they look as good as new again! We’ve put together this guide for removing pilling on clothes in order to help you save money by avoiding expensive dry cleaning bills and replacing your garments before they’re completely worn out.

What is pilling on clothes

Fabric pills are essentially loose bits of textiles that come off of clothes. They can also be referred to as “poppies” or “lint balls”. A lot of the time, you’ll need to shake your clothes out for these little buggers to fall off of them. If they’re not doing so on their own, try using a fabric shaver or an adhesive tape dispenser to remove them.

What causes pilling on clothes

Pilling on clothes is caused by broken or short clothing fibers on the surface become tangled together. When you wear your clothes, the agitation causes these pieces of fabric to rub against one another and break apart. This creates “pills” or little bunches of fabric that are stuck to the other fibers in your shirt.


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How to Get Rid of Pilling on Clothes

Use Pumice stone or fine-grade

For most synthetic fabrics (polyester, nylon, etc.) use a pumice stone or fine-grade sandpaper with light pressure to rub out the pills. This method works best when removing small pills that aren’t too deeply embedded into the material.

Use Hair Dryer

For larger or more stubborn pill clusters try using a hairdryer with a heat setting set between warm and hot. Once you’ve removed as many loose threads as possible hold the garment up against an ironing board and press lightly with medium heat until smooth again. If any remaining pills are sticking up, use the hairdryer to heat them until they’re completely flat.

Use adhesive tape

If you can’t remove the pilling or lint with any other method, try using adhesive tape. Peel back the tape and rub it over any debris on the surface of the fabric. The pill should stick to the tape and come off the clothing.

Note: If you’re using store-bought adhesive tape, make sure that you know how to get rid of adhesive residue without damaging your clothes.

Use an Electric sweater shaver

An electric sweater shaver is a device that can be used to remove pilling on clothes. The process of using an electric sweater shaver is simple. Plug the device in and turn it on to start removing those pesky little pills. These devices work best when removing small or medium-sized pills from sweaters, coats, and other fabric items.

Begin with the lightest touch and work your way up until the pills are gone. They’ll build up in the shaver’s barrel, which you can empty as it fills up.

Use a sweater stone

A sweater stone is a rectangular block of natural or synthetic material that is used with a light hand to remove fabric pills from a garment. It’s important to go with the direction of the nap on the fabric and not against it.

Rub the stone against the afflicted region slowly. Collect the extra pills by dragging them across the cloth and removing them with tape or your fingers as they build up.

How to get rid of pilling on couch

Rub your clothes against a dryer sheet or hairbrush to get rid of loose pills before they cause any more damage.

It is important to note that not all pilling on clothes is an emergency. If you notice small, dime-sized pills or lint balls, they can easily be removed by plucking them off the surface of the fabric with your fingers.

How to get rid of pilling on couch

Use a nail brush. Gently run it over the couch in circular motions to remove any loose threads from the fabric. The pills will also flatten out after you do this for a while.”

How to get rid of pilling on sheets

One of the easiest ways to get rid of pilling on sheets is to use a fabric shaver or a vacuum cleaner. If pilling is an issue that you have with your clothes, then go ahead and wash them. We sometimes forget that our garments need clean washing now and then as well. Rinsing your clothes in cold water will also help by getting rid of the excess fibers from the creases of your garments.

How to Prevent Pilling on Clothes

Here are some ways to prevent your clothes from piling up with pills in the future:

Buy garments that are less susceptible to pilling. This includes natural fibers like cotton or wool, which are easier to protect against this type of damage because they hold together better than synthetic materials. Keep in mind that not all polyester fabrics will pill. It’s usually harder for synthetics to stay together, so the impact is weaker and the fabric breaks down less quickly.

-Follow these simple rules when wearing your clothes to decrease lint accumulation: avoid using a clothes dryer when possible, use low heat when drying clothes in the dryer, remove garments immediately after washing to avoid them being caught on anything else in the load, and use a lint shaver regularly.

-Iron your clothes. Using an iron can help flatten out pills or lint that would otherwise accumulate into bigger clumps. The heat from the iron relaxes the fibers and smooths them out without damaging the quality of your garments.

-Buy a lint shaver. A lint shaver is a small device that is used to remove pilling from clothing, carpets, or any other fabric. The process can be done right in the convenience of your home with little effort. Simply plug the device in, turn it on, and shave away those lint balls. All you have to do is press the shaver against the fabric and watch it work its magic!

-Use an adhesive tape roller. These rollers are used for removing pills or fuzz from any clothes, furniture, linens, etc. using an ordinary piece of tape. You simply roll the adhesive side over the surface of your clothes and watch as the pills lift right off. This is a fast and convenient way to remove pilling from clothes.

How to get rid of pilling on wool

FAQs About Removing Pilling From Clothes

What type of sheet does not pill?

Egyptian, supine cotton and Pima are types of the sheet that does not pill. They are able to avoid the problem because they are very tightly woven and do not have a lot of loose fibers to create pills.

What fabric pills the most

Knitted Fabrics pills the most when it’s made of wool or cotton. This is because these types of fabric are more coarse and rough than other types and the consequence is that they attract and hold on to more lint and hair.

Can a washing machine cause pilling?

“No, It is not true that washing machines can cause fabric pilling on clothes. Although it will worsen the growth of pills on clothes”

Is pilling a sign of bad quality

“No, it is not true that pilling is a sign of bad quality. Pilling is caused by broken or short clothing fibers on the surface become tangled together.”

Does cotton pill

No, it is not true that cotton will always pill. Cotton pilling is more prevalent when it’s made of wool or cotton. This is because these types of fabric are more coarse and rough than other types and the consequence is that they attract and hold on to more lint and hair.

Does fabric softener cause pilling?

No, it is not true that fabric softener causes pilling. Fabric softener does not cause pilling.

What are fabrics that don’t pill

Linen, silk, and nylon are some of the fabrics that are less likely to pill.

How do I stop my purse from getting piles?

The best way to prevent pilling in your purse is to periodically remove any accumulated lint, etc. by hand with a small brush or duster.

How do you control pilling?

It’s usually harder for synthetics to stay together, so the impact is weaker and the fabric breaks down less quickly.

Final words

What do you think? Do you know how to remove pilling on clothes? What tips and tricks have worked best for your clothing? Share your advice in the comments below!

Thank you so much for reading.

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