Does Tencel Shrink? (How to Shrink Tencel Lyocell Easily)

Shrinking is only good when you want that action to be done. If you shrink the kids, not a good idea but when you want to shrink fabric so it will fit, then that may be a good idea. The only problem is that you can’t control the shrinking process.

Does Tencel shrink? Yes, Tencel can shrink even though it is a fabric that resists shrinking. You should get between 3 and 5% shrink rate when washed improperly. To shrink Tencel on purpose, all you have to do is getting it soaking wet and wash or dry it under high heat.

To learn more about Tencel’s shrinking issues just continue to read our article. It has the information you need to know about so you can either avoid shrinking the fabric or do it on purpose. Shrinking is either a good or a bad thing.

Does Tencel Lyocell Shrink?


It can and that is about the best answer we can give as it takes a lot to shrink this fabric. It is not like cotton which shrinks automatically. Tencel lyocell is a fabric that can shrink but does not always do so.

You have to watch how you wash and dry the material or you may end up with a smaller blouse or skirt than went into the laundry. How you care for this material will influence its response. Improper care will end up shrinking the material.

The good news is that this fabric is not supposed to shrink that much when it does get smaller. But it is enough to make you either hand the clothing item down or donate it to charity.

Tencel lyocell is similar to rayon and you should be careful how you handle this material. It responds in much the same way as it is a delicate material as well. Preventing shrinking means to handle with care.

Does Lenzing Tencel Shrink?

Besides improperly washing the fabric, there is another element that causes the fabric to shrink- the sun. If you wash a quilt or other household items made of Tencel and hang it in the sun when the temperatures are high, then you should see some shrinkage.

High heat is a given no matter if it comes through water temperature, dryer heat, or the sun’s heat. This material is sensitive stuff and you should take care to hang it out of the sun’s direct light whenever possible.

Another factor you need to watch out for is when the dryer twists the fabric as it dries the material. This twisting causes pilling to take place because the Tencel fibers get broken.

This tendency to pill just adds more work to your laundry schedule so it is always best to hang dry the material and protect your fabric from two weaknesses. Erring on the side of caution is always good when it comes to delicate fabrics like Tencel lyocell

Does Lyocell Fabric Shrink When You Wash It?


Lyocell can shrink if you don't wash the material properly. This is why it is so important to read the cleaning labels on the fabrics you wear. They give you the right instructions to follow and while there is some leeway to those guidelines, it is not permitted to ignore those words.

Some Tencel lyocell materials say hand wash or dry clean only. If you read those words on the outfits you want to buy, then you should be prepared to handle those new clothing items in those manners.

Ignoring those instructions usually means you end up ruining the material and wasting your money. That also means washing this fabric in cold or warm water avoiding hot temperatures no matter which appliance you use or if you hand wash.

If you hand wash in cold make sure to wear proper gloves so you do not hurt your hands while washing.

Does Lyocell Shrink in Hot Water?

Again, yes it can and you should take great care to handle this material like you would normal rayon or similar delicate fabrics. Being cautious is not wrong and you should be cautious when you handle Tencel Lyocell materials.

It may be advertised as a durable fabric but that does not mean it does not have its own set of vulnerable areas. Heat, no matter the source, is its enemy and you should avoid using it every time you do the laundry.

There is a silver lining under every cloud and even this delicate fabric has a silver lining. The first washing you may see shrinkage of about 3 to 5% then every washing after that, it will resist getting smaller.

But that does not mean you get to use hot water from the second washing on. You still have to treat the material like its delicate nature dictates and its washing instructions tell you to do.

Shrinking isn’t the only issue you will have to deal with when you ignore those cleaning guidelines.

Will Tencel Shrink in The Dryer?


The dryer may shrink your Tencel lyocell clothing or blankets. Part of that shrinking is due to the high heat you place your dryer on and the other part will be the friction or agitation the material has to endure while drying.

The preferred method of drying is hanging the clothing on a line or clothes rack out of the sun’s reach. This may be the slow, old-fashioned way of drying clothing and bedding but it is the safest method available. Plus, you get to save on your electric bill.

Also, it is a better way to dry if you don’t want to see any of your clothes get smaller, especially if you just bought the item the week before. There will be some Tencel fabrics that will say dry clean only.

When you see those words, don’t ignore them. That will be the safest way to clean and dry those nice Tencel fabrics. It may cost you more but it is cheaper than buying new again.

Tencel Shrinkage: How Much Does Tencel Shrink?

It is said that this material will shrink between 3 to 5% on the first wash if you clean the material improperly. But once that amount has been accomplished, then you should not see any more shrinkage.

The material is not supposed to shrink after the first washing and resists that result from the second washing onward. But that does not mean that shrinking won’t take place.

To account for that amount of shrinkage, you may want to buy a little larger clothing item to make sure you do not lose your money the first time you clean the material. But there is no real way to tell if this is the right move to make.

No one can control the shrink factor and there is no telling if the shrink resistant factor will maintain its integrity and stop all shrinking from the second wash on. Just make sure to use the proper cleaning techniques and follow the care instructions so your clothing lasts.

Does Tencel Yarn Shrink?


It can and this shrink rate should be on par with the shrink rate that other Tencel Fabrics have. Even Tencel bedsheets can shrink on you. The key is to use the right care methods to make sure you avoid this issue.

It all boils down to how you launder the material as improper washing or drying will have the fabric, even yarn, lose its original size. Ignoring the care instructions will be the key element in the loss of your yarn’s size. You just can’t wash Tencel materials any way you feel like it.

Only a few people have had success in breaking the rules. Then when in doubt, hand wash or dry clean the finished outfit so you know that the blouse, etc., will stay the same size.

As we have said before, this product may be durable, stronger than cotton but it is still a delicate rayon type fabric that doesn’t respond to different cleaning techniques very well. Just be cautious when you do your laundering so that your clothing remains the same size all the time.

How To Shrink Tencel

If you are going to do this on purpose, then you need to remember that there is no off switch to the shrinking process. The estimated amount of shrinking has already been given, 3 to 5%, yet there is no rule that the fabric will stop at 3 or 5%.

Some people may experience more shrinkage than they thought and the shrink resistant characteristic may not always work as it should. It is a tough call when trying to shrink any fabric let alone Tencel lyocell.

But if you want to try, you can hang your bedding or clothing out in the direct sunlight and see how much shrinkage you get. The drawback of this method is that the sun will fade those colors at the same time.

Another method would be to wash the material in high heat and dry it in the sun or use your dryer and turn the heat up. Both of these methods leave you helpless as you can’t stop the shrinking when it starts to get too small.

How To Shrink Lyocell Pants


It is possible that a hot iron may be helpful here or you can try the 3 methods already discussed in the previous section. But if you go too hot, then you run the risk of scorching the material or ruining it altogether.

This is the danger of purposefully trying to shrink your Tencel lyocell items or any item you have that may be too large. There is a second edge to the shrinking sword and that edge can ruin your work, waste your time and cause you to spend more money replacing the item you want to make smaller.

This is a judgment call on your part. Do you want to run the risk or not? That is something only you can decide for yourself. It is your money after all and how you spend it is up to you.

Just be careful and try to be cautious if you take this step. You may not find the exact same outfit in the exact same color for the exact same price you got the ruined one in and at.

How Do You Take Care Of The Fabric Tencel?

First off, despite all the claims made about how tough this material is Tencel is a delicate fabric along the lines of rayon. That means that hand washing in cold water is the preferred cleaning method. Then use a delicate laundry soap made for delicate fabrics.

Next, you should hang dry your wet clothes out of the direct sunlight. If you want to use your washing machine, use cold to warm water again and the gentle cycle. You can hang dry or when the material is almost dry toss it in the dryer with a wet towel for a quick spin to soften the material.

Once dry and you see a wrinkle or two, only use a warm iron and do not linger on any one spot for too long. Tencel may be tough but it still scorches. There will be some outfits made from this fabric that will say on its care label to dry clean only.

When you see those words, then dry clean only.

Some Final Words

Shrinkage seems to be a part of laundry life ever since the washing machine and dryer were invented. The high temperatures those appliances produce wreck havoc on delicate materials like Tencel lyocell.

Use the proper care instructions each time you launder this material as you never know when the shrink resistance will fail on you. Handle with care are good watchwords when it comes to Tencel fabrics.

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