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How to Unshrink Wool Clothing

Updated November 21, 2016

If you have accidentally shrunk wool clothing by washing it at home instead of taking it to the dry cleaner, you may think that it is beyond repair. When wool shrinks, the fibres lock together tightly, convincing you that the shrunken item is destined for the trash or donation to someone of a smaller size. Fortunately, you can make stubborn wool fibres unlock, allowing you to unshrink wool garments with minimal effort.

Fill your sink or bathtub with enough warm water to completely submerge your shrunken wool item. Add a dollop of hair conditioner or mild dish soap to the water and mix well.

Submerge your item in the warm water solution, and soak it for at least 10 minutes. This causes the wool fibres to unlock.

Drain your sink or bathtub of the water and remove as much excess water from your clothing item as possible by pressing it against the side of the sink or bathtub. Do not wring the water from your item as it may damage the wool fibres.

Place your shrunken item on an absorbent towel in a cool environment. As your item dries, gently hand-stretch it into its desired shape. When it is completely dry, you can wear your wool clothing again.

Things You'll Need

  • Warm water
  • Hair Conditioner or Dish Soap
  • Towel
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