Does Linen Pill? Tips to deal with Sheets, Couch, Clothes

All fabrics pill at some point. The only difference is that some do not pill as much as others do. The reason for that inequality usually is found in the type of weave the fabric has. A tighter weave usually means less pilling.

Does linen pill? Yes, linen fabrics do pill. The lesser quality more so than the higher quality fabric. But linen doesn't pill as much as other fabrics and it is a good cloth to have on your bed when you want nice clean sheets that help keep you dry at night.

To learn about how to deal with pilling on your linen fabrics just continue to read our article. It has the information to help you avoid pilling and what to do when it does take place.

Tip #1: When looking to buy linen fabric, go with the type that has the tightest weave. That construction will have fewer pilling issues than loosely woven materials

Tip #2: If you do not like pilling then you should go with a woven fabric over a knitted one. The latter fabric is a looser weave and pills more than woven material

Can Linen Pill?


Yes, it can. The good news is that linen does not pill as much as other fabrics. While linen does not pill as much as cotton or some other natural fabrics it pills more than man-made ones.

Also, if linen is the weaker fabric in a blend, then it will pill ore than the stronger fabric no matter which one that is. You just have to check the fabrics before you buy to see which one in the blend is the stronger of the two.

Also, check the quality of the linen fabric before buying. If it is a low-quality material you may want to upgrade and go with a higher quality option.

Tip #3: To decrease the chance of pilling during the wash cycle, turn the fabric inside out before tossing it into the machine.

Do Linen Sheets Pill?

The higher more luxurious quality of linen sheets do not pill that much but they will pill. It is going to depend on how the sheet was made. If it was made with a loose weave then you can expect a lot of pilling to take place.

Higher quality sheets may come with a tight weave thus you will experience less pilling. You are actually getting more for the higher price when you buy more expensive sheets.

You have one less task to perform freeing your time up. The extra cost will be worth it in the long run as those luxurious sheets should last longer than inexpensive ones.

Tip #4: Avoid fabric blends that have 3 or more fabrics combined. The more fabrics in the blend the more pilling you will experience.

Why are My Linen Sheets Pilling


Most likely you bought a lower cost linen bed sheet to save some money. When you do that you are typically getting a very low-quality bed sheet that has a loose weave. With those two components, you will see more pilling than if you had spent the extra money to buy a better quality bed sheet.

Or, you are using a too strong wash cycle that is creating pills through the agitation of the cycle. Linen sheets should be washed on a delicate cycle or hand washed if you want to avoid pilling.

Also, you should avoid using the dryer as the drying action could cause more pills. Hang drying is the ultimate way to dry linen sheets and it should stop the pilling from taking place.

Tip #5; If you want to prevent pilling taking place, lay your linens flat on a flat surface and let them air dry. Or you can hang dry them in a good breezy spot and let the air handle the drying task.

Does Belgian Linen Pill?

Belgian linen is one of the more popular fabrics you can find. It is made from all European flax and comes from very good soil that creates a top-quality plant. That element makes Belgian linen very desirable.

This version of linen is very luxurious and the high quality of the fabric after it has been processed makes sure you do not see a lot of pilling. This brand of linen also stays lint-free for the most part.

The one drawback is that Belgian linen is not very elastic. Its long fibers are prone to be bent and once that happens they do not bend back into their original shape.

Tip #6: When pills do appear some fabrics can’t handle tough fabric shavers or similar items. The best way to remove the pills is with a disposable razor

Does Linen Upholstery Pill?


All fabrics will pill at some point in time. One of the reasons they do, including linen, is the rubbing of the fabric against each other or other objects. Abrasion is one key cause of pilling.

That means that while linen resists pilling upholstery linen will pill because of all the rubbing that goes one when one sits in the chair or on the sofa. Usually, upholstery linen is recommended for very formal living rooms, etc., because there is less chance of getting the fabric dirty or wrinkled.

Again, the quality of the upholstery fabric will come into play here as well. The lower the quality the higher the chance of pilling. If the upholstery is used in a family room or high traffic room then expect a lot of pilling to take place.

Tip #7: When you wash your fabrics, try to keep light colors away from the dark colors. The reason for this is the rubbing of the two fabrics may cause the lighter fabric to stick to the darker and illuminate the pilling a lot easier. And vice versa

My Linen Couch is Pilling

The reason this takes place is probably because that linen couch sees a lot of action. Just sitting and doing a slight movement can cause the abrasion to create pills. Once the sofa starts to pill it doesn’t look very good and may show its age.

The way to treat that problem and make your sofa look newer, even though it isn’t, is to use the right anti-pilling tools to get rid of those nasty pills. Sandpaper, a fine grit, is a good household object to help you remove the pills.

The key is not to sand too hard or you risk hurting the fabric. If you don’t trust yourself with sandpaper then go with a fabric shaver or disposable razor.

Tip #8: Top tools to use when removing pills are a fabric shaver made for your fabrics, a disposable razor, a scrubbing sponge, pumice stone and a man’s hair clipper

Linen Pants Pilling


The most popular places you will find pills is where most abrasions take place. For shirts it is under the arms, for bed sheets it is in the center, and for linen pants, it is between the thighs near the crotch as well as on the rear seat.

Rubbing and abrasions are the most common cause of pills. That is why your washing machine, while practical and time-saver, is not always your friend. That machine creates more pills through its agitation action than other causes.

When you see pills the key is not to get upset as almost all fabrics will shed their fibers.

Tip #9: You can avoid pills if you wash your linens by hand. The lighter action in the wash will cut down the abrasions and keep the fabric in better shape

How To Remove Pilling From Linen

One of the slower and more tedious methods for removing pills is to use your hands and pick those little creatures off your favorite sweater or blouse. That might take too much time so if the fabric can handle it, turn to a good disposable razor and wipe those pills away in one long smooth stroke.

If you have a linen rug, then the man’s hair clippers should do the job very effectively. Or if the pilling item is large like a chair or a sofa, then a good fabric shaver or sandpaper will handle the task.

There are lots of ways to remove pills that won’t damage your fabrics.

Some Final Words

Pilling is a fact of laundry life. Once you accept that fact you will find that dealing with pills on clothes, even linens, will be much easier to handle. The trick is to use the right tool for the job and make sure you get those pills without harming your bedding or clothing.

Also, choose tighter woven and higher quality fabrics so you can avoid as many pills as possible.

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