How To Keep Cotton T-Shirts From Shrinking: Everything (Detail)

How To Keep Cotton T-Shirts From Shrinking? | Everything You Need To Know!
How To Keep Cotton T-Shirts From Shrinking? | Everything You Need To Know!

As we all know, cotton is a natural, breathable, soft material used to construct different kinds of all-seasons apparel. There are many benefits associated with cotton clothing. The clothes made of cotton not only provide plushness and comfort to the skin, but with its moisture-wicking ability, it gives a cooling effect to your skin. Besides all the advantages, cotton is a robust material with undeniable features. That is why cotton t-shirts, polos, sweatshirts, hoodies etc., require so much patience and struggle to keep them in their best condition. With our ideal tips and tricks, you can find some best ways to avoid cotton shrinkage and learn how to unshrink cotton clothes! So to prevent your favorite dress, shirt, or pants from shrinking, please follow our guide on how to keep cotton clothes from shrinking?

How To Get Rid Of Cotton Shrinking?

To emphasize, cotton clothes are skin-friendly, environment-friendly and natural! Yes, cotton is a natural fiber with all the qualities we love! Cotton clothes are soft, breathable, and delicate. Compared to synthetic fibers, for instance, polyester, cotton is more susceptible to shrinking. Why? The reason is that large textile and industrial machines stretch the cotton fibers during different processes to create the required tension. It takes place when cotton is spun into thread. After that, the cotton fibers are weaved into the cotton fabric, and heat is applied to dry them. In this way, the fibers lose tension, causing a slight shrinking after the first wash.

But don’t worry! With extra care and proper precautions, it’s easy to maintain your cotton t-shirts in their original form and perfect fit. So what do we need to do first? Initially, when you buy a cotton t-shirt, it’s essential to give it a wash and air dry to minimize any chances of shrinking. Once your shirt settles down, follow these steps PROPERLY to get the desired results! Follow these go-to steps religiously when washing your cotton apparel after the first-hand wash. Here are these steps!

Remember These Three Rules When Washing Your Cotton T-Shirts:

These rules apply only to 100% pure cotton t-shirts like Gildan G200.

Gildan G200 is a 6 oz., 100% preshrunk cotton and one of the top-selling tees in the market today!

  • Hand Washing
  • Using a Washing Machine
  • Air Drying

Hand Washing:

If you got enough time, hand-wash your cotton t-shirts! It is the best practice to keep your cotton clothing for years. And to maintain their plushness and quality. For this, it is recommended to fill your sink with cool water. Add a little spoon (very mild) detergent to the sink water. Soak your cotton clothing in the water for about five minutes, and they are done! For more soiled apparels, the time duration should increase up to thirty minutes! After you are done soaking the clothes, now rinse them thoroughly again in clean, cool water!

Use A Washing Machine:

Suppose you don’t have enough time to give all cotton t-shirts a good hand wash. It’s okay to use a washing machine. No worries! When washing clothes in a washing machine, keeping the setting on a delicate cycle is essential. It will prevent the cotton clothing from shrinkage. Use cold temperature settings for washing. Cold water is excellent for cotton t-shirts! Because they resist agitation and excessive friction. As these elements produce shrinkage and cause pilling and other unwanted wear.

Air Drying

It’s up to you! Whether going for a hand-wash or a washing machine, both can wash and clean your cotton clothing the best way! But how to dry the cotton t-shirts? Is it good to use a washing machine dryer? NO WAY! If you want to prevent your cotton clothing from shrinking, only use the air drying method. Cotton is prone to heat. High heat temperatures are like enemies! Heat is the quickest way to shrink your cotton apparel. So don’t pop your cotton t-shirts in a machine dryer. Instead, dry them in direct sunlight. To maintain their good shape, it is preferable to use hangers and clothing racks!

Method To Unshrink Cotton Clothes?

It feels unlucky when your new favorite cotton tee unshrinks in the laundry. But don’t despair! It can happen due to a lack of knowledge or a mistake – sometimes we mix our cotton clothes with other laundry items, and they get exposed to high heat and inappropriate washer settings. With the help of these simple steps, you can regain its original size!

The steps are as follows:

  1. Use lukewarm water to fill your sink.
  2. Fill the sink with two tbsp. of baby shampoo.
  3. Add the shrunk cotton t-shirt into the sink water.
  4. Soak the t-shirt for straight 30 minutes.
  5. Drain out the water, and empty the skin. Squeeze your shirt with gentle hands to remove excess water.
  6. Lay down the shirt on a flat table. Gently stretch the material to reshape its correct size.
  7. Repeat step no. 06 every couple of hours. (Use a fan to offer speedy drying).
  8. For Gildan G200 Men’s Ultra Cotton 6 Oz. T-Shirt avoids using bleach.


To conclude, these rules, as mentioned earlier, are specifically for 100% pure cotton t-shirts! It might sound like a bit long process, but it’s worth keeping your cotton clothing in shape, fit and unshrink! For more information, read the care instruction on the manufacturer’s label. These rules are also applicable to cotton sheets and towels.


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