Do You Have a Bobbling Problem? Here’s How to Fix it

It doesn’t matter whether you have the classiest suit, most expensive trousers, or the comfiest loungewear; bobbling on clothing can be an issue for almost anyone. These small balls of knotted fabric may not be problematic on their own, but they can be when they cover your entire outfit. What causes them, and how do you get rid of them? Read on to learn moret.

What Causes Your Clothing to Bobble?

Bobbles, also known as linting or pilling, are damaged fibers. When put through a washing and drying cycle, the tumbling process can cause these fibers to pull from your clothing and get caught back up within it.
Even taking the utmost care with your outfits while you’re wearing them can’t stop bobbling from happening when your washing machine takes over. Short of handwashing, you may have to resign yourself to the fact that it will affect some of your clothes.

Are Some Fabrics Worse Than Others?

Polyester and other synthetic materials can be more susceptible to bobbling than others. These materials build up anelectrical charge when rubbing against each other, attracting debris from within your washing machine. As the wash cycle continues, they become intertwined with the polyester material, creating those bobbles we often struggle with.

How to Reduce or Eliminate Bobbling On Clothing

There are many ways to go about reducing bobbling from your favorite garment. Once you purchase a new outfit, keep some of these methods in mind.

Liquid Detergent

We’ve come a long way with making sure we take care of our clothing, such as with garment steamers. Even what you wash your clothing in can make a difference with linting. Use a natural liquid detergent marketed as ‘gentle.’ Not only is it more environmentally-friendly, but it doesn’t contain abrasive and gritty particles like powder that can impact the fabric’s integrity.

Wash Synthetic and Natural Materials Separately

If you have wool and other natural garments, wash these separately from your synthetic clothes. With a reduced likelihood of developing a charge against other materials, you may be able to reduce the instance of pilling.

Avoid Tumble Drying

Even though tumble drying is a fast and convenient drying method, it may not be doing your clothing any favors. The spinning cycle can not only change the shape of garments but pull out fibers and cause bobbling.

Wash Clothing Inside Out

This washing method doesn’t necessarily prevent bobbling, but it can stop it from being visible from the outside.

Use a Fabric Shaver

The jury is still out on whether slicing fibers is in the best interests of the garment. In saying that, it can remove those pesky bobbles. A fabric shaver is an electric tool that runs over your fabric and takes the heads off the bobbles. The result is a smooth, pilling-free garment you can happily wear.

Many people admit defeat and wear clothing covered in bobbles because they don’t see any way around it. As it turns out, there are many fast, easy, and hassle-free ways to address it. The next time you purchase a new wardrobe addition, consider whether any of these tips could be right for you.

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Tags:Bobbling, textiles

About the Author

Stella Cooter

Journalist, traveller and mother, Stella writes about fashion and style, luxury and adventure.

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