Can You Dye Lyocell? (How To And What Dye To Use For Tencel)

Change the color change your personality. It can happen as you opt for a brighter more brilliant color, you can let that change influence you. The compliments you may get should boost your confidence and make you feel better about yourself. Plus, you may break out of your shell.

Can you dye Lyocell? Yes, you can dye Lyocell as that material is very accepting of dyes and absorbs new colors very well. To dye this material you can use the same dye brands and methods as you would when you dye your cotton fabrics. A reactive or direct dye should do the trick.

To learn all about dyeing Tencel lyocell, just continue to read our article. it gives you the information you need to have a successful result but no results are guaranteed. Take a few minutes to get the steps and direction you need.

Can You Dye Tencel Lyocell?


Yes, you can. The makers of this new fabric made sure the natural fibers did not resist different dyes and could absorb different colors easily. But this doesn't mean you can dye dark Tencel fabric lighter. That rule still applies.

One thing about dyeing this material with different dyes is that this fabric doesn't need as much dye as it would take to color cotton with the same color. There seems to be up to a 30% reduction in dye products used.

This seems to be the case all across the dye board when comparing the materials used to change the color of the fabric. This may save you some money when you want your Tencel lyocell clothing to look new again or cover stained spots.

With the same procedure as cotton, you do not have to learn new tricks or techniques to have a successful result. Just be cautious as the assumption is the leading cause of mistakes and ruined fabrics.

What Dye To Use For Tencel

Since Tencel is mostly a natural product, you have lots of choices when it comes to dyes to use. The ones you would choose to dye cotton are just as good for Tencel as they are for any natural fabric.

There are reactive dyes, industrial ones, natural options as well as powdered versions you can use. The only problem will come in is when you use a hot water dye on this material. Heat may still ruin the fabric so opt for a more cold water dye in case you do not want to take the risk.

With lots of brands on the market to dye material, read the labels to make sure you get the right option. Always err on the side of caution and do a test first before committing your fabric to the dye bath.

Also, since Tencel is a form of rayon, opt to use those dyes that work specifically on that kind of in-between fabric.

Can You Dye Lyocell With Dylon?

Can-You-Dye-Lyocell-With -Dylon

This brand of dyes is made for natural fibers only. That would include Tencel because it is mostly made from wood chips or bark. The chemicals used in creating the fabric are said to be non-toxic but that remains to be seen.

Then since Tencel is very dye friendly, you should be able to find a Dylon dye that will work with this fabric. The lyocell material is supposed to dye just like cotton and other natural fibers. This means that you have lots of leeway in what colors and dyes you can use.

Take your time and read the labels to make sure you are getting the type of dye and color you want on the fabric. Remember colors always look darker when wet. If the color is not as dark as you want, go through the process again.

The only factor you have to worry about is the heat needed to complete the dyeing process.

Rit Dye For Tencel

This brings up an important point. So far we have been thinking of 100% Tencel materials when talking about dyeing this fabric. If your clothing has more than 40% polyester blended in with the Tencel, then you have to use a dye that is designed for polyester or synthetic products.

If the polyester part of the blend is less than 40%, then go with those dyes that are made for natural fibers. If you want to be a pain about it, if the blend is at 40%, err on the side of caution and use a dye made for synthetic materials.

The products to dye natural fibers should be your first choice when using a Rit dye option. Those options are usually the all-purpose dyes made to work on a variety of fabrics.

With that said, you need to be careful in using Rit dyes on Tencil as this material doe snot react well to heat. Rit dyes for the most part need a lot of heat to work right. If they have cold products you can use, then go with those. Just to make sure your Tencel items are fully protected.

Tencel Natural Dye


You can use these types of dyes with Tencel but do not expect to achieve the same results with a cellular fiber like this fabric as the ones you get with protein fibers like silk or wool.

The good news here is because Tencel is made from a natural fiber using non-toxic materials, you do not have to use as much natural dye to achieve the desired results. But you still do have to use a mordant to make sure the dye holds to the fibers.

One drawback to this option is that the natural dye colors may not last. Plus, the colors you get may not be as bright and brilliant as those you see on wool or silk. Just be cautious and make sure you find the right mordant to use.

The mordant should work well with Tencel and if it doesn’t keep searching until you find one that does. Then follow the instructions that come with the natural dyes.

Best Dye For Tencel Lyocell

The best dyes for Tencel would be the ones that do not require a lot of heat to make the color stick. It is risky using a high heat product even though some Tencel materials can withstand some heat application.

Most of Rit dyes are made to be used with boiling water which may damage the fabric if you leave it in the pot for too long of a period. Fiber reactive and direct dyes, along with all-purpose dyes will rank right up there when needing to add or change the color of your Tencel outfit.

The best thing to do is read all the labels before you make your purchase. Those labels should have enough information to let you know if they are going to work well with your lyocell material and if not, check the instruction sheet on the inside of the box.

It is always best to be safe than sorry and if in doubt, maybe get some help from the salesperson.

How To Dye Tencel Yarn


One method takes several steps and it begins with weighing the yarn. The amount of dye you will use will depend on how much the material weighs when it is dry. Next, place 1/2 tsp. of synthrapol in a liter of water and soak the yarn overnight.

The next morning you need to mix 100 g of fiber with 1/8 tsp. for a pale dye, 1/4 tsp. for light colors, 3/4 tsp. for dark colors, and 2 tsp. for black. That measurement is for every 100 grams of yarn you have. So if the yarn weighs 300 grams multiply the other figures by 3.

Once that is done, add 100 grams of salt in a bucket of warm water for pale colors, go up 50 grams every color level from light to black stopping at 200 grams. Mix thoroughly and then add to the dye mixture before adding the yarn.

After that, mix 3 tbsp. Of soda ash with about 1 cup of water and for darker colors add between 4 and 5 tbsps. Add the soda ash and water mixture to the dye bath after removing the yarn. Once the two are mixed return the yarn to the bath stirring for about 5 minutes. Then stir once every 10 minutes for an hour.

Now remove the yarn and rinse first with warm water till it runs clear, then move up to hot water before returning to room temperature. You will be rinsing several times in this step.

When you are done, hang to dry or lay the yarn out flat.

Dyeing Tencel Fabric Tips

1. Always wash the fabric first not only to get it clean but you can do this step with a color remover to make the fabric white and easier to dye.

2. Use cold water reactive dyes for the best results for Tencel. This saves you the worry of ruining the material during the dyeing process.

3. All-purpose dyes are okay but their color tends to fade unless you use a special after treatment called cationic.

4. Sulfur, indigo, azoic colors, and vat dyes work on Tencel. If it is good for cotton it is usually good for Tencel fabrics.

5. Tencel is supposed to be the strongest of all cellular fibers and only loses about 15% of its strength when soaked in water. This gives you a little extra leeway when dying this material.

6. The dyes that work on cotton and other natural fibers will work on Tencel. The only concern you will have is the heat factor.

7. Always check the label of the dye and the fabric before attempting to make color changes. Dry clean only Tencel should not be put in any water no matter how hot or cold it gets.

8. Always properly prepare yourself before you start dyeing Tencel. Use good rubber gloves, old clothes, and protective goggles when dyeing then make sure to use plastic sheeting to cover the area around your tub or pot. Accidents do happen.

9. Be careful when dyeing a Tencel polyester blend especially if it has polyester thread holding the garment together. If you use the wrong dye, the thread and polyester fibers may not accept the color change and make your outfit look a little weird.

10. Make sure you really want to dye the material before you get started. Any doubt or hesitancy can ruin the project and leave you with one big mess to clean up after you are done. You may have to redye the material just to make it look normal.

11. Do not use good porcelain pots, etc., or your bathroom tub to do your dye project. Always use cheap pots, buckets, or those made from stainless steel. Dyes do not discriminate and can stain the tub or good pots.

12. Make sure to rinse the completed dyed garment before washing. Wash it separately or with dark colors as sometimes that first wash will still bleed the new color. You can hand wash separately if you want to avoid the risk of changing the color on other clothing.

Some Final Words

Tencel is seen as a new improved fabric that cuts waste, uses less dye material as well as other positives that are not seen in cotton or linen. Along with those properties, Tencel is made from natural fibers making it very easy to dye.

You can use just about any dye brand that works on natural fibers. The chemicals used to create this fabric do not get in the way of those products. There are 2 things to watch out for when changing the color on Tencel fashions.

One, you have to watch the blend and thread used in creating the garment, and Two, you have to watch how hot the water gets.

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