Does Rayon Fade Easily? How to Fade Rayon Without Ruining It

Fading colors are a problem and if you have ever paid for new fabric because of bleeding, tearing, fading, or shrinking, it most likely had some rayon in it. Other fabrics do the same thing but usually, rayon has played a large role in those fabric mishaps.

Does Rayon Fade Easily? It seems that if untreated by the clothes maker, rayon will fade faster than cotton. That is why some rayon fabrics are labeled dry clean only. One of the easiest and cheapest ways to fade rayon on purpose is to leave it in the sun. Untreated rayon should not keep its color very long.

To learn more about how much rayon fades just continue to read our article. It has the information you are looking for. If Rayon is treated then you shouldn’t see any fading. If it doesn’t, then expect it to fade fast and without warning.

Does Rayon Fade Easily?


This is a good question as it brings up a very good clothing situation. Manufacturers do treat rayon fabrics with a non-fade formula but because of the cost, they do not treat all rayon fabrics.

That means that you have to check the cleaning label to see which kind of rayon you got, the treated or the untreated kind. Without the treatment, rayon will both bleed color and fade and this is not good for rayon upholstery fabric. If you leave your furniture in the sun, expect a lot of fading to take place.

This is why when rayon was originally introduced to the fashion world, the labels all said dry cleaning only. It wasn’t for decades that manufacturers learned which chemicals could be used to help prevent rayon from fading and shrinking.

Those chemical processes are expensive so not all rayon fabrics are treated. If your cleaning label says dry clean only, then do not wash it. If you ignore the label chances are you will fade and shrink the material.

Does Rayon Fade When Washed?


If it is not the treated kind of rayon then yes it will fade. Maybe not after the first wash but it will happen sooner than you think. This may happen even if you use cold water. There is really no way to control when or how much the fabric will fade.

If you wash untreated rayon, you may end up shrinking it or damaging it in other ways other than fading it. This is a very sensitive fabric to launder as it can be damaged by so many different elements.

For example, alcohol, perfume, hair treatments, and even urine spills can damage the material before you get it wiped up and taken care of. Also, you should avoid using those spot cleaners that contain alcohol, mineral acids, and bleaches. These will fade your rayon fabrics as well.

Because rayon can lose up to 70% of its strength when wet, you have to be careful, about what activities you do around those items that are covered in this material. The reason for that is that even pure water can stain or ruin your rayon fabric.

Does Rayon Fade in The Sun?


Yes, rayon can fade in the sun especially if it is the untreated kind. When the fabric is untreated you basically have unprotected material on your hands and rayon is not that tough, to begin with. It can get damaged in so many ways.

One way to tell if you have untreated rayon fabric is to look at the cleaning label. If it says dry clean only, then most likely it is untreated fabric. Those clothing items that come with structured designs may say dry clean only even if the rayon has been treated.

The rayon can be washed in this instance but the material creating the structure cannot. This is part of the guessing game that takes place with rayon. They do not give you many hints as to which items are treated and which ones are not.

But if you see a lot of fading just by leaving the rayon in the sun, then you know it was untreated fabric. Trial and error are used a lot in fabric use and sometimes too many people suffer on the error part.

How To Fade Rayon

How-To-Fade -Rayon

The first method is to find a nice sunny spot in your yard or patio and leave the fabric in the direct sunlight for about an hour or two. It may take longer than that to fade but you do not want to lay out the fabric and forget about it. The fading may go too far then. Keep an eye on those items you put in the direct sunlight.

Next, you can wash your rayon clothing several times in a row. If you are using cold water. If that doesn’t do the trick move on up to warm water as you have to be careful with hot. The last temperature level may do more than fade your rayon outfit.

If you have fade-resistant rayon that has been treated by chemicals, then you will have a tougher time fading the material. This is the way it is with all synthetic fabrics. Some fade and others are treated and resist the fading.

To fight fading, turn the material inside out if you can when you wash it. Or avoid hanging the rayon clothing up in the direct sunlight.

Some Final Words

If you thought man mad synthetic fibers were tough, think again. Rayon is one of those fabrics that is a combination of both the man-made and the natural worlds. That means it may react like cotton and fade fast or it may resist fading.

Make sure to double-check the label before you buy to see if you are getting treated or untreated rayon. The former can be washed while the latter can’t. Sometimes you can be fooled by the label.

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