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How to Get Cat Hair Out of Clothes

There’s no doubt you love your cat. Cat hair, however, is incredibly frustrating to deal with once it has stuck to your clothes or furniture. Figuring out how to get cat hair out of clothes is essential for any cat owner to know to keep themselves and their house clean.

You can tackle even the most stubborn cat hair using many common household items. Your dryer alone can lift away unwanted hairs if you toss your clothes in for a quick cycle before you put them in the washer. You can also use sticky products like lint rollers or masking tape to gather cat hair clinging to your fabrics.

While removing cat hair can be challenging, there are easy solutions to help keep your clothes looking clean. Keep reading as I break down my favorite methods for getting rid of unwanted pet hair. Your clothes will be glad if you do!

How to Get Cat Hair Out of Clothes

Does Washing Clothes Remove Pet Hair?

Running your clothing through a regular wash cycle will probably remove some surface-level pet hairs on your clothing. However, pet hairs are notorious for working their way into the stitches of your clothing and clinging tightly to your fabrics. This means that an ordinary wash cycle isn’t going to be able to lift away all of the pet hair off of your clothes.

You’ll need to find a method that helps to lift or release the hairs from your clothes to remove them. Sticky materials like lint rollers and masking tape can help gather pet hair, while static-reducing sprays can help stop the hairs from getting stuck together. Buying extra products may not be necessary, however, since a few added steps to your wash cycle will let your dryer and washer get the job done.

How to Get Cat Hair Out of Clothes: 7 Methods

Remove Cat Hair from Clothes

While many claims across the internet exist for how to best get cat hairs off your clothes, not every recommendation will work well. I’ve narrowed all the possibilities and chosen our top 7 methods for getting stubborn cat hair off your clothes. These methods range from items you already own, like a washer and dryer, to products you can purchase at a local store.

7. Dry Clothes Before Washing

One of the simplest ways to get cat hair out of your clothes is to dry your clothing in your dryer before you wash it. Doing your laundry in reverse might seem silly, but the dryer is excellent at softening your fabrics and loosening the pet hair. Much pet hair will fall off the dryer’s clothes and get caught in the lint trap.

I recommend running your clothes through a 10-15 minute dryer cycle on the tumble setting. You’ll want to use low or no heat when doing this since the clothes won’t be wet and too much heat could damage them. You also only want to use this method with clothes that can safely be dried in your dryer.

Once the brief dryer cycle has ended, remove the clothes and shake them well to let any other loose hairs fall off the fabric. Then, put them in your washing machine and run them through whatever cycle you normally would. You will dry the clothes again after the wash cycle however you normally would, which should remove the last of the hairs.

Just don’t forget to empty your lint trap, so the hairs don’t make their way back to your clothes! Otherwise, you could end up right back in the same mess that you started with.

2. Dryer Balls

6 Pack All Natural Organic Wool Dryer Balls XL Size - Reusable Chemical Free Natural Fabric Softener, Anti Static, Reduces Clothing Wrinkles and Saves Drying TimeIf you want to give your dryer an added boost, consider buying a set of dryer balls to toss in with your load. Dryer balls are typically made with simple wool and they move around your machine as the cycle runs. The wool balls will gather up stray hair, which can then be pulled into your lint trap.

Part of the reason dryer balls are useful is that they help reduce static cling. Static can be one of the reasons why cat hairs like to stick to your clothes. Anything you can do to reduce this will help lessen the amount of hair that follows you around.

3. Vinegar Rinse Cycle

VinegarVinegar is one of the best all-purpose cleaners you can use anywhere in your home. So it isn’t a surprise that vinegar can be used to help lift away stubborn cat hairs. You can add ½ cup of white vinegar to your washing machine during your rinse cycle to help remove unwanted pet hair.

You want to be sure to only use white vinegar since other types could accidentally stain your clothing. You also don’t want to add too much at this step since you could end up making your clothes smell like vinegar if the rinse cycle isn’t able to fully wash the vinegar out.

Vinegar is great at relaxing your fabrics to help them release the pet hair in the wash. I recommend this wash method after you have pre-dried your fabrics in your dryer. By doing this, you get twice as much hair-removal power than if you did each method alone.

4. Lint Roller

Scotch-Brite Pet Extra Sticky Hair Lint Roller, 95 Sheets(Packaging May Vary)The classic lint roller is an excellent way to get rid of pet hair if you need a quick solution. All you have to do is run the sticky roller over your clothes to trap and remove the hair. You can do this while wearing the clothes or do it to your dirty laundry before throwing it in the washing machine.

The only downside to lint rollers is that they cannot be used forever. Eventually, the roller will run out of sticky sheets and you will have to buy a new one. Pets shed their hair so much that you will probably end up going through lint rollers at such a quick rate that this could get expensive quickly.

I like to use lint rollers as a last-minute fix to get rid of pet hair on the clothes you plan to wear for the day. Beyond that, trying one of the other methods here is a bit more wallet-friendly.

5. Masking Tape

Scotch 2025-48C General Use Masking Tape for Basic Painting, 1.88 inches by 60 Yards, 2025, 1 roll, 1.88' Width, TanMasking tape works very similarly to lint rollers. You can use the sticky side of the masking tape to trap unwanted pet hairs and lift them away from your clothes. Simply run the sticky side over your fabrics and watch the cat hairs pile up quickly.

You can use this method with any type of tape you might have on hand. Just make sure you choose one that isn’t going to leave a residue on your fabrics when it is pulled away.

The main downside to tape is that the tape is generally pretty narrow. You will have to run it over your clothes many more times than you would with a lint roller. However, in a pinch, masking tape is a quick fix for the stubborn hairs that are bothering you.

6. Rubber Glove

SteadMax 3 Pairs Cleaning Gloves, Reusable Natural Rubber Dish Gloves, Waterproof Latex Non-Slip Dishwashing Gloves for Kitchen and Household (Large, 3 Pack)One of the most surprising remedies for pesky pet hair is a classic rubber glove – like the kind that you might use for household cleaning. There are two main ways that a rubber glove can work. The first is to use static cling to lift away pet hair and the second is to add water to do the same.

The first way you can tackle pet hair with a rubber glove is to simply put the glove on and run it across the surface of your clothes or furniture. The friction between the dry glove and the fabric creates static, making the hair stick to the glove instead of the fabric.

The second way to use a rubber glove on pet hair is to get the glove wet and rub it across the surface of the fabric. The water can also make pet hairs stick to the glove, lifting them safely away from the surface of your clothing.

If you have a rubber glove on hand, I recommend trying both methods. Start by using the gloves while dry to remove as much hair as you can. Then, get the glove wet and try it again. You’re likely to get twice as much hair off the fabric than if you only tried one method.

7. Anti-Static Spray

Static Schmatic for Clothes, Natural Static Cling Remover, Static Spray for Clothes, Anti-Static Spray, Natural Static Cling Remover, Dryer Sheet Alternative, Laundry Size (12 Fl Oz)Once you’ve got the pet hair off of your clothes, you can keep it off by using products like anti-static spray. The anti-static spray helps minimize the amount of static that builds up on your clothes. Static often keeps the hairs trapped against the fabric instead of allowing them to fall away.

With anti-static spray, all you have to do is lightly spray your clean clothing once it has come out of your dryer. Then, fold the clothes or put them away in your closet until you are ready to wear them. The spray should help keep most of the pet hair off your clothes, so you don’t have to resort to other methods of removing it!

Why is Cat Hair So Difficult to Remove From Clothing?

Imagine for a moment that you have a tangled bundle of green strings and a single red strand has ended up in the mix. You want to remove the red string from the bundle, but shaking the bundle or getting it wet won’t get rid of it. Instead, you have to find a way to stick something to the string and pull it out or loosen the fibers around it so it will slip free.

This essentially happens when a strand of cat hair makes its way between the interwoven fibers of your clothing. It is also the reason why hair is extremely hard to wash out once it has become tangled in your clothes. The hairs get trapped too tightly to be easily pulled free or washed away in your washing machine.

Static cling makes the problem even worse. Fabric inevitably produces static as it rubs against itself and fine cat hairs will be trapped against your clothes.

Because of this, you need to use one of the special methods listed above to tackle these difficult hairs if they get caught in your fabrics.

Do Dryer Sheets Remove Pet Hair?

Dryer sheets can be useful in helping to remove pet hair from your clothes. For one, they help soften the fabric so the hairs can slip free. They also help reduce static cling in the dryer, which is one of the main culprits behind unwanted pet hair clinging to clothing. You can even buy special dryer sheets for pet hair that are custom designed to do just this.

You can also rub a fresh dryer sheet over the surface of your fabrics to help lift pet hairs. This trick works like the dry rubber glove method discussed above.

Additionally, scented dryer sheets can make your clothes smell extra fresh. However, if you are sensitive to perfumes and fragrances, you might want to avoid rubbing dryer sheets on any fabric that might come into contact with your skin.

How Do You Get Cat Hair Off Clothes Without Washing Them?

If you need to remove pesky cat hair but don’t want to wash your clothes, don’t worry! Many methods we have discussed can be used to get cat hair off without running your washing machine. A simple trip through the dryer using low or no heat will lift away much of the pet hair.

You can also use store-bought methods like lint rollers or masking tape to lift away cat hair as you go about your day. You don’t even have to remove your clothes to do this. Simply run the sticky side across the fabric and watch as the hairs are lifted away!

How To Remove Cat Hair From Clothes In Washing Machine and Dryer

Your home washing machine and dryer are some of the best ways to remove cat hair from your clothes. All you have to do is remember to follow the proper steps.

Washing Machine

Your regular wash cycle will probably do an okay job at removing some of the cat hair. You can improve how well the cat hair is removed by running the clothes through the dryer before you wash them. This will remove much of the hair and make it so that your washing machine has less to deal with.

You can also add ½ cup of white vinegar to your rinse cycle to give your washing machine some extra assistance. The vinegar will help loosen up the fibers of the fabric, making the hair slip-free.

You’ll want to make sure that you don’t overfill your washing machine with clothes when you do this. The more room that your clothes have to move around, the better the chance that the water will be able to lift away the hairs. If your clothes are too densely packed, the hairs will either stay in place or may rub off onto nearby clothes.


Your home dryer can be your best friend in getting rid of stubborn pet hair. I recommend running your clothes through the dryer for 10-15 minutes before washing them to lift off most of the pet hairs clinging to the fabric. After you’ve washed the clothes, you can dry them again with dryer balls to help further trap any loose hairs.

Just be sure to use dryer sheets or some other material to help reduce static cling in your dryer. Static cling will make the hair problem worse since it will only trap the hairs against the fabric. You should also be sure to clean your lint trap out after every dryer cycle to prevent the hair from moving back to the fabric once it’s been removed.

Best Way To Get Cat Hair Off Clothes

Our pick for the best way to get cat hair off clothes is to use the classic dryer method. This method won’t require you to go out and buy new products to get the hair off and is generally safe for your clothes. The only time you should not use this method is if your clothes cannot safely handle a low level of heat.

If you don’t have time to run your clothes through a dryer cycle, then our top on-the-go pick is the classic lint roller. While a lint roller isn’t a good long-term solution, they are portable and can be taken just about anywhere to gather up any hairs you might notice.

Regardless of which method you choose, remember that cat hair doesn’t have to be frustrating and doesn’t have to ruin your clothes. Stick to the methods I’ve given and pesky pet hair will be a thing of the past!