Does Cashmere Shrink? (How to Shrink a Cashmere Sweater)

Sometimes, when we buy a bigger/smaller size of clothing, we rely on the fabric's ability to shrink or stretch to fit us. Cashmere is an expensive clothing material and garments made out of this fabric are considered to be luxury goods.

If you've managed to buy an incorrect size for your Cashmere pullover/coat, you will want to know whether you can manipulate the fabric to fit your body measurements. Imagine you've saved up and bought yourself that snazzy Cashmere sweater on your neighborhood storefront that you'd had your eyes on for a while. You go back home and try on your purchase only to find that it is a size and some bigger than you. What do you do? You could always gift it, but we're sure you wouldn't want to part with such a carefully considered purchase for yourself.

Does Cashmere Shrink? That's okay, you can always shrink your Cashmere sweater into a size that is appropriate for you.

In this article, we guide you on how you can effectively shrink your Cashmere clothing by washing or drying it or by other means possible. If you’ve been searching for a guide to inform you on how to properly shrink your Cashmere garments without damaging them, you’ve come to the right place.

Does Cashmere Shrink When Washed?

Cashmere has a unique ability to shrink the very moment you bring it near to any heat source. You must be very careful when dealing with Cashmere clothing if you want to avoid shrinkage. Due care needs to be taken while washing this luxury textile.

Does Cashmere shrink when washed? A 100% yes. Like any other wool material, Cashmere is prone to shrinking when washed with hot or even warm water. The only way to wash Cashmere clothing without shrinking it is to use cold water to clean it. We discuss more how hot water application affects Cashmere yarn in the section that follows.

Does Cashmere Shrink in Hot Water?


We’ve discussed how Cashmere, as a fabric yarn, is prone to shrinkage. You bring a piece of Cashmere clothing near any heat source and you will have shrunk it in bare minutes.

How about washing it? What is the right temperature to wash Cashmere clothing? Does Cashmere shrink in hot water? Yes, it does. If you wish to shrink your Cashmere coat/sweater/any other clothing item a couple sizes, all you need to do is dunk it in a bucket full of hot water. You will have managed to shrink your Cashmere clothing easily.

Your only alternative to avoid shrinking Cashmere while washing it is to wash using cold water. Hot or warm water application will almost always shrink Cashmere fabric. How about if you hand-wash it though? Will it still shrink? Let’s find out.

Does Cashmere Shrink When Hand Washed?

Now that you know you shouldn’t try to give your Cashmere garment a warm wash until you want to shrink it, we move on to other means of possibly shrinking Cashmere clothing. If you’re interested in learning ways in which you can shrink your Cashmere garment, you will be happy to know there are several.

For instance, does Cashmere shrink when hand washed? Hand washing is the ideal method to wash and clean your Cashmere possession. Machine washing can stretch out the fibers of this delicate fabric and potentially destroy your Cashmere sweater/coat or clothing item. If you wish to shrink your Cashmere sweater to size, you can hand wash it in warm water in a tub with some wool wash/baby shampoo.

You will achieve a smaller size Cashmere garment post-wash without having damaged the fabric quality otherwise. But, why does Cashmere shrink? Curious? Read on to learn below.

Why Does Cashmere Shrink?


Cashmere is a delicate fabric. It is several times finer than sheep’s wool, which makes it even more vulnerable to damage. Why does Cashmere shrink? Cashmere shrinks due to this inherent senstivity and vulnerability of the clothing material.

Expose Cashmere yarn to any kind of agitation such as heat, prolonged washing, and so on and it will force the fibers to come together tightly, making it shrink. We know that Cashmere shrinks when we wash it, if we are not careful with the temperature of the water. Do Cashmere products incur the same risk when we have it professionally dry-cleaned it though? The following section delves into this matter.

Does Cashmere Shrink When Dry Cleaned?

Most Cashmere clothing direct its users via its care instruction label to have it dry cleaned. You will rarely find store-bought Cashmere clothing that provides instructions on how to hand-wash it. Why is this? Does Cashmere shrink when dry cleaned or does dry-cleaning eliminates shrink risk for this particular fabric type. The answer is no, for most cases. Why? Well, because material shrinkage is predominantly water-induced and the process of dry-cleaning garments involves almost no water usage.

When you take your Cashmere garment for dry-cleaning, it is usually fed into the dry-cleaning machine with a liquid cleaning agent. The cleaning procedure does not utilize water. The washed garment is then dried using heat. The heat applied to dry your Cashmere clothing during dry cleaning can shrink it a little, albeit not significantly.

If you don’t wish to have your Cashmere sweater shrunk, you ought to hand wash it. You will want to know the correct way to handwash and dry your Cashmere clothing. We discuss whether you should use a dryer on your Cashmere sweater/clothing item below.

Does Cashmere Shrink in the Dryer?


If you choose to go the DIY route on washing your Cashmere knitwear, you will want to know how to safely wash your Cashmere clothes without harming them for later use. If your objective is to shrink your Cashmere knitwear to fit you, then you will also find the instructions we share here handy. Does Cashmere shrink in the dryer? Indeed, it does.

Most dryers use hot air to dry out your washed clothes. Any kind of heat application poses shrinkage risk for your Cashmere cloth. If you’d like to shrink down your Cashmere pullover, simply toss it in the dryer after you’re done washing it.

However, if you’d like it to remain the same size, we recommend you to only use a dryer which has the option for air dry. Of course, the best way to dry Cashmere garments is to allow it to naturally dry in the air. If you’re in a hurry, there’s nothing wrong with tossing it in the dryer for a couple of minutes to expedite the drying process.

You can inform yourself more on the subject of Cashmere shrinkage as we proceed.

Cashmere Shrinkage

Own a Cashmere garment? You’ll probably already be aware how susceptible to shrinkage the material is. But why is Cashmere shrinkage so common? Cashmere is an extremely delicate and fine wool yarn. Any kind of stress put upon the material causes it to shrink.

You might want to use warm water to deep clean its fibers at some point, but you are recommended to use steam instead. Expose your Cashmere garment to any kind of heat and it can shrink amply to turn into a felted blanket. Of course, while this is a problem for most people – there are others who take advantage of this quality of Cashmere garments.

They can always purchase an oversized Cashmere knitwear if they are not sure of their size and then shrink this knitwear down to their body fittings at home. We list suggestions to advise you on the best way to shrink a Cashmere sweater one size below.

How to Shrink a Cashmere Sweater One Size


You want to re-size your Cashmere garment, do you? You want to know how you can shrink your Cashmere knitwear to fit you better? You will want to read up on how to shrink a Cashmere sweater one size then.

While the only way to shrink a Cashmere sweater one size is to high washing and drying temperatures in the washing machine, you will want to be careful that doing so doesn’t result in pilling.

Machine washing your Cashmere wearable could damage the shape of your Cashmere clothing and also compromise its structure. So, what can you do instead? Hand wash your Cashmere sweater with warm water in a bucket or sink. Immersing your Cashmere knitwear in warm water for ten minutes should be able to shrink it down one size well.

After washing, you can dry your Cashmere sweater in the dryer and then remove it and try it on. If you feel like your Cashmere sweater could do with more shrinking, you could put it back inside the dryer for a longer time to allow the heat to do its job.

We've discussed how to shrink Cashmere sweater, but how about a Cashmere hat? You can follow the tips listed below in the shrinking Cashmere hat.

Shrinking Cashmere Hat

You know how to shrink your Cashmere clothing by now, but what about your Cashmere accessory? You don’t want to be walking around wearing an oversized woollen hat now, do you? What are the steps for shrinking Cashmere hat? They’re basic, really.

You can wash your Cashmere hat by hand or using your washing machine’s lowest temperature. Once your Cashmere hat is washed and clean, you can use the dryer to absorb any moisture from it by choosing the low-heat/warm dry option.

It is best not to use the high heat setting as this could potentially ruin the fabric quality of your Cashmere hat or shrink it more than you’d like. Keep a tab on your Cashmere hat’s shrinkage in the dryer every five minutes by removing it and trying it on. Stop when you’ve achieved the desired hat fit.

If you’d like to know how to shrink Cashmere gloves without harming them, we suggest you to continue reading.

How to Shrink Cashmere Gloves


Knowing how to shrink your Cashmere sweater/coat and such wearables is alright. However, it is equally helpful to be informed on ways to be able to shrink your Cashmere accessories. You learned above how you can shrink your Cashmere hat, but what about how to shrink Cashmere gloves?

Shrinking Cashmere gloves successfuly relies on the same process used to shrink your Cashmere outfit to size. Try to avoid machine washing your Cashmere gloves warm. Although that will do the trick, you might end up collaterally damaging the quality of your Cashmere gloves as well.

No, hand wash your Cashmere gloves with warm water and then rinse it clean with cold water. The difference in temperatures used while washing should be able to exert ample stress on the material to shrink it. Handwashing also felts the wool a little, making it denser and warmer for you to enjoy.

Do not want to shrink your Cashmere garments? You will want to know what to do when Cashmere garment shrinks. We inform you in this final and concluding section of our article.

What to Do When Cashmere Shrinks

You’ve shrunk your Cashmere knitwear two sizes too small and have no use for it anymore? Don’t get rid of it just yet, you can find ways to unshrink your Cashmere clothing. Cashmere is severely prone to shrinkage and you will want to know what to do when Cashmere shrinks. The good news is, you can fix your shrinking/shrunk Cashmere wearable. All you need to do is follow these steps.

  • Arrange for a bucket or fill your sink with a quart of water and a singular tablespoon of hair conditioner/baby shampoo.
  • Place the Cashmere garment you want to unshrink in this solution.
  • Allow the garment to soak for ten minutes so as to loosen the fibers.
  • Finally, gently squeeze the water out of this washed Cashmere garment. You do not want to wringe or stretch it as you could damage your Cashmere knitwear by doing so.

Of course, the best way to avoid shrinking your Cashmere clothing is to practice proper caution and care while washing and drying it. Yet, if you have somehow unintentionally shrunk your Cashmere clothing item, you can always unshrink it back to your size. You need not lose hope of being able to wear your dear Cashmere cloth again right away.

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