Everyone loves fleece blankets for keeping them warm and cozy, especially during winter time. But as we all know, myself included, fleece blankets tend to lose their fluffiness as soon as we wash them for the first time. Did you know that there’s a way you can prevent that? I’m here to share with you how to wash fleece blankets without ruining them.
The texture of fleece blankets and the fact that fleece is a synthetic fabric means that you can’t wash them the same way as you would other blankets if you want to keep them fluffy. It is best to wash them in cool or cold water. You should also use a mild detergent and the delicate cycle, then dry them using low heat.
Many people don’t realize that they are washing their fleece blankets the wrong way. But washing them correctly is key for not ruining that soft and fluffy texture. In this guide, I’ll share the best recommendations for how to wash a fleece blanket so that it maintains its qualities over time. Continue reading to learn more.
Can You Wash Fleece?
The fact that fleece seems to lose some of its texture after being washed leads people to think that maybe they shouldn’t have washed it or should have hand washed it at the very least. The reality is that you can wash fleece. However, it needs to be washed a certain way.
This is because fleece is a synthetic material. Although fleece is extremely durable and will last a long time, the texture is unique compared to other synthetic materials. Synthetic materials, in general, can’t tolerate high levels of heat. Heat will damage the fibers, causing them to burn or melt.
Due to the softness and fluffiness of fleece fibers, heat will cause them to melt and stick together. That’s why fleece blankets and clothing can feel so clumpy after washing and/or drying them. Using the wrong type or too much detergent can also cause the fibers to stick together because the soap didn’t get washed out completely. Lastly, abrasion with other fabrics and the washing machine’s agitation can also cause clumping of fibers.
Can You Machine Wash Fleece Blanket?
Yes, you can machine wash fleece blankets. This is the preferred method due to the size of the blankets. Who wants to wash a large blanket by hand and wring it out afterward?
However, some people may feel like they have to hand wash their fleece blankets to keep the fibers from clumping together due to any of the reasons mentioned above. But the problem of clumping fibers lies not in the washing machine itself but the settings that were used to wash the blanket.
The first thing that you should know is that it is best to wash fleece blankets only with other fleece items or by themselves. Doing so will prevent the fleece fibers from rubbing up against other fibers. This can be abrasive and cause too much friction between the fibers, causing the fleece to lose its texture. Keep reading for more tips on how to wash fleece.
What is the Best Way to Wash Fleece?
When washing any type of fleece, whether it is a blanket or not, It is best to wash it in cool or cold water. Using the right water temperature is important for making sure that the fibers do not become damaged.
It is also a good idea to use a mild or gentle detergent. These detergents will be free of chemicals that could be too harsh on fleece, and they also won’t produce a lot of suds and residue that could remain in the fibers if it doesn’t get washed out completely.
Another recommendation is to use the delicate cycle. The delicate cycle produces less agitation from the washing machine, which can help keep the fibers soft and fluffy. After washing, it is best to dry it using the dryer’s low heat cycle or let it air dry. Again, fleece fibers can become damaged by heat, so drying fleece correctly is just as important as washing it correctly.
How to Wash a Fleece Blanket Without Ruining It
Now without further adieu, here is the best way to wash a fleece blanket without ruining it, from pre-treating to washing to drying. I’ll also suggest which laundry products that you should avoid using on fleece, as well as share some other recommended tips.
Before washing your blanket, you will want to pre-treat it to remove any stains. If you wash the blanket without treating the stain first, it could cause the stain to become set in permanently. Dishwashing liquid is a great product for pre-treating fleece blankets because it is gentle enough for the fibers but still powerful enough to remove stains.
To pre-treat stains, just squeeze about a drop of dish soap onto the stain. It doesn’t take a lot because of how sudsy the soap can get. Let the soap sit on the stain for about 10 minutes to give it time to soak into the fibers and lift the stain.
After 10 minutes, use a paper towel or soft cloth to blot away the stain. Try not to rub the stain. Doing so could cause it to penetrate deeper into the fibers and make it harder to remove. After blotting the stain, you’re ready to wash the blanket.
Remember that when washing a fleece blanket, the first thing you should do is to put it in the washing machine by itself or with other fleece items only. Washing it with other fabrics can lead to the fibers clumping together due to abrasion, which could result in the texture of your blanket not being as soft after washing as it was before washing.
Although fleece is a very durable fabric, the texture of it can be very delicate. When washing a fleece blanket, set the washing machine to the gentle or delicate cycle. Doing so will lower the washing machine’s agitation so that it isn’t as rough on delicate fibers. It also helps to ensure that the texture of the blanket doesn’t get ruined.
Next, you will want to add just a small amount of mild or gentle detergent. A lot of people overestimate how much detergent they need. They think that using more detergent will help your items get cleaner. In reality, using too much detergent can lead to detergent buildup in your fabrics because it doesn’t get washed out all the way. It can also cause buildup in your washing machine, potentially damaging it as well.
Using a mild or gentle detergent also reduces the amount of chemicals that are used on the fabric. Even if the chemicals don’t damage the fabric, some of them may remain in the fibers after washing, leading to discomfort and skin irritation, especially in people with allergies or sensitive skin. You can even substitute dish soap instead of detergent, but only a very small amount is needed because dish soap produces many suds.
Lastly, be sure that the water temperature is set to a cool or cold setting. Using water that is too hot for synthetic fibers like fleece is the easiest way to ruin them. Synthetic fibers are essentially made from plastic, which can melt easily if it gets too hot. If your fleece blanket is coming out of the wash feeling clumpy as well as stiff, the water temperature was probably too hot.
There are two ways you can dry your fleece blanket. It just depends on how long you are willing to wait for it to get dry. The first way is to let it air dry. Letting it air dry is the best way to ensure that the texture remains soft and guaranteed not to ruin it. However, fleece blankets can take a while to air dry due to their size.
To air dry a blanket, you can either hang it up outdoors or in a well-ventilated area, or you can lay it flat across your bed. To increase air circulation, turn on your bedroom fan to speed up drying time.
You can also dry a fleece blanket in the dryer, which will speed up drying time and increase the chances of ruining the texture. That’s why it is so important to use the right dryer settings. Even if you did everything right during washing, the blanket could still get ruined in the dryer.
There are two different dryer settings you can use. Using the low heat setting should fluff up your blanket without damaging it, and the blanket will dry faster than if you let it air dry. Or you can use the “tumble dry” or “air fluff” setting, which will dry your blanket without the use of heat. But, doing so could take longer to dry. You can also throw in a dryer sheet so that your blanket smells good as well as feels good.
Things to Avoid
When laundering a fleece blanket, doing any combination of these things could cause the blanket to become ruined. Be sure to avoid them at all costs.
- Heat- I’ve already touched on how using heat can damage the fibers and ruin a fleece blanket, but I wanted to reiterate it because it is that important.
- Bleach- Avoid using bleach on fleece. The harsh chemicals are too much for the delicate fibers.
- Liquid fabric softener- Liquid fabric softener works by coating the fibers with a lubricant, which could negatively affect the texture of soft fabrics like fleece. Dryer sheets are okay to use.
- Timed dryer cycles- Using the timed dryer cycle to speed up drying is not recommended. Timed cycles usually rely on more heat to dry items faster.
- Ironing- If, for some reason, your fleece blanket becomes wrinkled, do not attempt to iron it. Again, this goes back to high levels of heat. Simply folding a fleece blanket and draping it over something is usually good enough to remove wrinkles.
One of the issues with certain types of fleece is that it can pill after washing, especially if you didn’t wash it properly. Luckily, you can remove pilling with a razor. Just run the razor blades gently across the blanket to shave off the pills and make it smooth. You should know, though, that this is not an effective method for removing clumps of matted fibers.
How Do You Wash Fleece and Keep It Soft?
While all of the laundry tips above are recommended for washing fleece without ruining it, what is the most effective way to keep fleece soft? The reason that fleece doesn’t feel as soft as it used to is due to the fibers clumping together. The most common cause is due to too much heat in either washing or drying.
The key to keeping the fleece soft is washing it in cold or cool water and drying it using low or no heat. This is the best way to ensure that the synthetic fibers don’t melt and clump together. If it is too late for some of your fleece items after trying to make them look new again, at least you will know for future reference.
How Do You Make Fleece Look New Again?If you didn’t know the proper way to wash fleece and your blanket is looking dull or clumpy, you may be able to make it look new again. While you may not completely restore the original soft texture, you can at least make it look like it is there.
All you need is a pet brush or another brush with stiff, metal bristles. This is most effective if the fleece is damp. So either do it after washing and before drying or spray it with water before brushing it.
When brushing the blanket, start in a corner for practice so that it is less noticeable or doesn’t turn out the way you want. Once you’ve brushed the fibers to your liking, work your way across the blanket until all the fibers have been brushed. When you finish, the blanket should look fluffier.
I hope this guide to washing fleece blankets will prevent you from accidentally ruining your favorite one. Remember that using too much heat is the most common way that fleece blankets get ruined, so you should wash them using cool or cold water and dry them using low or no heat. Also, wash the blanket by itself for best results. If you enjoyed this article, share it with others. Thanks for reading!