Does Spandex Shrink In The Dryer Or When Washed?

You may have noticed that some clothes are made out of spandex. Spandex fibers are made up of polyester and nylon, and they’re often blended together to make them more durable and less prone to stretching out.

If you want to know whether spandex shrinks in the dryer or when washed, then this article is for you!

Does Spandex Shrink In the Dryer Or When Washed (1)

Does Spandex Shrink?

Spandex is made up of individual thread-like fibers. These threads are put under a lot of stress during the manufacturing process.

This causes the fibers to be twisted together, and then stretched when woven into fabric. When heated, the fibers relax, causing the fabric to shrink.

Spandex is made out of polyurethane, a chemical similar to plastic. It’s a man-made material, not a natural fiber. Manufacturers can easily customize it for their specific purposes.

Spandex is a very popular material used in athletic wear because it makes clothes fit better. It is also used in underwear because it doesn’t show sweat stains.

Spandex doesn’t shrink when washed carefully. It shrinks when exposed to high temperatures. It’s more heat-resistant than most synthetic fibers, but it’s not as durable as natural fibers.

Spandex is sensitive to heat. This means that the material can shrink when you wash it at too high a heat. The same goes for drying. However, if you put your spandex clothes in the washer or dryer at a safe temperature, they won’t shrink. 

Spandex can be shrunk by high heat. Temperatures of 65 °C can start the shrinking process, while temperatures over 177 °C can melt it.

Most washers will reach the shrinking temperature in a standard hot water cycle. This doesn’t mean you should avoid washing your spandex clothes in the machine. Just make sure you use a cool or cold cycle.

Spin washers won’t shrink spandex fabric. They’re made to hold their shape well despite the significant movement, but the dryer is the place more likely to shrink your spandex.

The prolonged high temperature is enough to relax the fibers so that they return to their original size, making the fabric smaller.

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Washing Spandex Safely

Spandex is a type of material used in clothing and underwear. When clothes are washed in hot water, they become softer and more comfortable.

This is because the heat causes the fibers to relax and expand. However, if clothes are washed in cold water, they can become stiff and hard. This happens because the cold water shrinks the fibers.

You should use a lingerie bag or a pillow case when washing spandex.

To avoid shrinking your spandex when you wash it, wash it in cold or cool water, and lay it flat to dry. Avoid putting it near a heat source, because this could cause it to shrink. Don’t hang it up, because it could get stretched out by the weight of the moisture.

Spandex blends should be washed separately from other fabrics. Check the label of your clothing to see if it contains spandex or blends. You can wash spandex blends in the washing machine, but you need to use a mild detergent.

Handwashing in cold water is safe for delicate clothing. Laundering in hot water could cause damage to fabrics. Layering clothes is recommended because it helps prevent wrinkles.

Spandex Blends

Spandex is a type of synthetic fiber used in clothing. Spandex is usually blended with other fabrics such as cotton or nylon. Dryers can shrink these other fibers more easily.

It is usually blended with natural fibers such as cotton or wool to create more durable fabrics. Spandex blends are used to make underwear, swimsuits, and exercise wear.

Spandex blends are commonly made out of polyester and nylon. Polyester shrinks more than nylon. Heat speeds up the process. Shrinking happens when the fabric loses its strength.

Avoid washing and drying clothes in hot water because you’ll shrink them.

Spandex & Cotton

Spandex/cotton blend fabrics are very common. Cotton isn’t a stretchy fabric on its own, but it has many other desirable qualities.

Adding spandex doesn’t change the strength of the fabric, but gives it a comfortable stretch and keeps it from stretching out of shape, while the cotton helps make the fabric softer.

Cotton is more prone to shrink than spandex. A 100% cotton garment will shrink more than a 100% spandex garment. A 50/50 blend of cotton and spandex will be hard to shrink. A 50/50 mix of cotton and polyester will be easy to shrink.

Spandex & Polyester

Polyester is a synthetic fabric made by mixing spandex fibers with polyester fibers. Spandex makes polyester garments softer and more flexible. Polyester is more durable than spandex, and it helps reduce spandex shrinkage.

Spandex is a synthetic fiber made from polyethylene terephthalate (PET). Polyester is another name for PET. When washing clothes, it’s important to use cold water and low heat settings. This will prevent the polyester from shrinking unevenly.

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Spandex & Nylon

Nylons are synthetic fabrics that resist shrinking, such as being heat-resistant and shrink resistant. Polyester is a type of nylon.

Spandex/Nylon blends should be washed at low temperatures and dried using an air dryer.

Spandex & Rayon

Rayon is a synthetic fiber that mimics the feel and appearance of silk. Silk is very delicate, and it shouldn’t be washed or put in the dryer. Rayon is sensitive to heat and moisture, and it shrinks when exposed to those things. Rayon doesn’t last as long as spandex does because it wears out faster.

Spandex doesn’t make rayon garments strong enough for machine washing. Rayon garments need to be washed by hand.

How To Shrink Spandex Intentionally

Shrinking spandex is easy if you know how to do it right. Wash your spandex in hot water and then put it in a machine dryer. Make sure you use a high heat setting. This will make your spandex smaller than before.

Spandex leggings should be washed inside out to prevent shrinking. Leggings should be dropped into the dryer without being folded or rolled because this could cause damage.

Spandex can also be shrunk by washing it in cold water or boiling it. You can also use chemical treatments such as vinegar or lemon juice.


You should use a hot dryer to shrink your clothes. Place them inside a pillowcase, mesh bag, or lingerie sack before putting them into the dryer to keep them from shrinking too much.

When drying clothes, use a medium to high temperature, depending on what kind of material your clothes are made out of.

Make sure to check them every 10-15 minutes, but make sure to do this when the machine isn’t running. Spandex will shrink between 5 and 10% depending on how much spandex is in the clothing.

High heat settings are recommended when washing spandex leggings. To shrink them, flip them inside out and put them in the dryer. Use a pillowcase or plastic bag to wrap them while drying.

Leggings made of spandex do not shrink or stretch. They are comfortable and durable. They are also easy to wash and dry.

Spandex can be washed in the washing machine. However, it shouldn’t usually be put in a dryer for too long because it might melt or even burn. Manufacturers recommend washing it gently in warm water and drying it using a fan.

Spandex And Heat

Spandex is a synthetic fiber used in clothing. It is made from polyester and nylon. The spandex life is enhanced by handwashing or machine washing.

Handwashing is recommended because it is gentler than machine washing. Machine washing should be done on a gentle cycle.

Spandex shrinks when heated. Avoid direct heat and use a towel to protect your clothing from heat. Use a pillowcase to protect your clothes from damage.

Polyester shrinks by about 1 to 3 percent depending on the type of fabric and how you wash it. Spandex shrinks more than other fabrics because of the chemical composition of the fiber.

Static electricity is created when two different materials rub together. This can be caused by rubbing your clothes on carpeting or other items.

When you put your clothes into the dryer, this causes friction, causing static electricity. After drying, remove your clothes as soon as possible. Do not leave them in the dryer for too long because it could cause permanent damage.

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Tips For Shrinking Spandex

When you wash spandex leggings in your washing machine, they get smaller. You should read the label to see if there are any other materials besides spandex in the spandex legging. For example, cotton might make the spandex shrink less.

When you want to shrink your spandex leggings, it’s important to run them on the highest temperature settings on the washer and dryer. You’ll need to read the care label inside your leggings to see what kind of spandex it uses. Spandex doesn’t need to be washed as often as other fabrics.

Always flip the leggings (pants) inside out to prevent heat which may cause fading of the color or damage the fabric of the pants. This harm will be hard to recover from. Add some mild detergent into your washing machine if you want to clean the leggings while shrinking them.

Set the washing machine on a high water temperature and let the leggings wait until the end of the wash cycle. Dry the leggings away from direct sunlight or put them in the dryer for about 10 minutes for them to get shrunken down.

Does Spandex Shrink In the Dryer Or When Washed (1)

About Spandex

Spandex is a synthetic fiber that stretches up to 8x its original size. It is often used in sports clothing such as running shoes, jogging pants, and leggings. It is also used in bicycle shorts, swimsuits, and bras.

Pure spandex is rarely used in clothing, but it is sometimes blended with other types of fibers such as cotton, nylon, rayon, or silk.

The base material used to make spandex is polyurethane. This was developed in 1937 by the IG Farben company in Germany.

At the end of WW2, hundreds of top German scientists started new careers in America. Many of these textile engineers transferred to the DuPont company, which was the era’s unquestioned leader in synthetic textile development.

DuPont wanted a new polymer fabric with high elastic properties.

Once created, scientists at DuPont referred to this fabric as “spandex”; once this fabric was completed, it was sold under the brand name Lycra, but consumers preferred to call this material spandex, and it was this term that entered the public lexicon to refer to this synthetic fabric.

Spandex is used worldwide to make high-tech clothing. It is also found in many types of apparel. Unfortunately, it has a negative effect on the environment because it is made by using petroleum as a raw material.

Spandex fiber production improves over time as new technology and production methods come into being. By changing the starting prepolymer they can develop fibers which stretch even further.

Other characteristics can be changed by using different pre-polymer ratios, better catalyzers, and various fillers (e.g. carbon black).

Finally, improvements in manufacturing will allow for production of fibers faster and more efficiently, thus allowing for the development of even more advanced fibers.

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To distinguish its brand of spandex fiber, DuPont chose to call it lycra. DuPont launched an extensive public relations campaign for its Lycra brand, taking ads and full-page ads in top women’s mags. This helped catapult the brand to success.

Girdles were once a symbol of independence and freedom. However, by the mid-1970s women started wearing them less often. Women then decided to use Lycra instead.

They found it to be more comfortable than girdles. As a result, women started using Lycra for exercise and sports.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Spandex Shrink?

Spandex is a heat-resistant fiber, but it can shrink in the dryer or when washed.

What’s The Best Way To Reduce Spandex Shrinkage?

If you don’t want your spandex garments to shrink, you need to avoid washing and drying your spandex garments at high temperatures.

To prevent spandex or a blend of spandex from shrinking or warping when you wash it, use low temperature washes and air drying.

What Is A Good Blend For Spandex?

Spandex/cotton blends are very common blends.


Spandex doesn’t react well to heat, but if you put it in the dryer, it can be shrunk. Shrinking spandex leggings is possible, but you need to use a high temperature.

Spandex has the ability of stretching in all directions and shrinking back to its original size. This makes it easy to get a perfect fit every time you wear spandex. Hopefully this guide has helped you learn all you needed to know about spandex!

Amanda Brown
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