With winter right around the corner, many men are trading in their short-sleeved shirts for sweaters. Whether it’s made of cotton, wool or cashmere, a sweater is guaranteed to keep you warm and comfortable amidst the winter weather. However, one of the problems you may encounter with sweaters is the presence of fuzz balls. Known as “piling,” it’s a common phenomenon that occurs on sweaters. So, what can you do to prevent piling on your sweaters?
Choose the Right Sweater
Not all sweaters are susceptible to piling. Usually, this phenomenon occurs in sweaters with short fibers. After washing and drying, the short fibers become intertangled with one another; thus, creating the characteristic fuzz balls known as piling. Choosing high-quality sweaters made of premium, long fibers can prevent this from happening. On the other hand, knitted sweaters with short fibers are more likely to develop piling.
Use the Gentle Wash Cycle
When washing your sweaters, set your washing machine to the gentle cycle. Heavy or even regular cycles are often too aggressive for sweaters, resulting in damage to the fibers. And when the tips of the fibers become damaged, they may lock together with other fibers to create piling. If you choose the gentle wash cycle, however, you can often prevent this from happening. The gentle cycle washes clothes more slowly and with less force, reducing the risk of damage to your sweaters.
Alternatively, you can hand wash your sweaters if your washing machine doesn’t have a gentle cycle.
Rather than placing your sweaters in the clothes dryer, consider line drying them instead. Of course, it takes longer for a sweater to dry on a line than it does in the clothes dryer. However, this will protect your sweater from damage caused by the clothes dryer, as well as piling.
Check the Care Label
Finally, try to get into the habit of checking the care label on your sweaters. Typically found inside the collar, the care label is a small tag with specific instructions by the manufacturer on how to clean and care for the garment. If the care label says “dry clean only,” you should avoid washing it and instead take it to the dry cleaners.
It’s nearly impossible to avoid piling on sweaters, but following these tips will help you control it. And when you discover these characteristic fuzz balls, use a fabric comb or lint roller to remove them.