I recently purchased a new sweater; of course, I was way more interested in the style, color, and how I looked wearing it than anything else. When I got home, I checked out the care label and discovered it was 35% acrylic. I’ll admit that I was surprised. First, the sweater didn’t feel like it was partially made of acrylic. Second, acrylic isn’t difficult to care for, but there are problems that could arise when providing care including shrinking, stretching, and snagging or pilling.
Before we get started on how to properly care for acrylic garments, let’s first answer this question: What is acrylic? Acrylic is a synthetic fiber often found in women's sweaters, knit suits, pants, skirts, and dresses, and it is characterized by its ability to stretch and conform to the shape of the body and recover to its original dimensions once the tension is released. Garments containing acrylic fibers have become increasingly popular due to their reasonable price and the fact that they are available in a wide range of bright, fashionable colors.
Follow these tips to keep your acrylic garments in tip-top shape:
- As with all garments, be sure to check the care label before cleaning or ironing. In particular, look for any special instructions or precautions.
- Dry acrylics on a cool, short cycle at temperatures no higher than 120 degrees F.
- Never hang acrylics to dry. Tension from the weight of the water may cause the acrylic to stretch. Because acrylics have a low moisture absorbency and dry rather quickly, it is best to lay these items flat to allow them to dry.
- De-wrinkle using light steam. Tension from an iron placed on the yarns, along with the heat of the steam, will often cause drastic stretching.
- Avoid handling acrylics while warm. Acrylics have a greater tendency to permanently stretch if tension is placed on them while they are still warm.
Of course, if you are concerned about caring for acrylic garments, or any garment for that matter, at home, drop them off at one of our locations, and we’ll be happy to provide the top-notch care that your clothing deserves.