An informative guide to fabric piling:
Have you noticed fabrics that have been washed over time start to form small fuzzy balls? Pilling is a natural occurrence for all fabrics regardless of the quality of the yarn fibres. Read on to find out the tips you can use to reduce piling and maintain the quality of your fabric.
What is piling?
Piling is a small ball of fibres that forms on the surface of the fabric. It is not a defect and it is caused by abrasion on the surface.
Why and how does piling occur?
Pilling usually occurs where there are friction and abrasive actions on that section of the fabric. The fibres on the fabric are likely to intertwine with each other under abrasive actions, forming small balls of fuzz on the surface.
Common areas can include pillowcases for men with short hair / facial hair stubbles / shaven body hair, feet area where users have greater movement with rougher heels or nails etc.
Piling on a section area
People with short hair or facial hair are likely to notice piling on a concentrated area, especially on one side of the pillow. The hair stubbles cause the fibres to pull and loosen, overtime these forms piling on the surface. We recommend not to share pillowcases in such cases to prevent further piling other pillowcases.
Other factors that cause piling on a particular areas include: user with rough heels, shaven body hair, nails etc.
Piling on a large area
If you notice piling occurs throughout the fabric, it is likely due to washing condition. When bed sheets are washed with other clothes, especially in the presence of zippers and buttons, the washing movement causes friction between fabrics making it more susceptible to piling.
How to prevent piling?
The best practice for washing all types of sheets is hand-wash, but we understand that it might be difficult for most of us. For washer settings, please use the following:
- Flip inside out and we highly recommend the use a laundry bag
- Wash in temperature up to 30°C
- Gentle wash settings (low spin)
- Short duration (30 mins)
- Mild detergent (No bleach and softeners)
- Hang dry immediately*
*If tumble drying is required, please remove promptly right after the dryer is done while the sheets are moist.
You need not wash your items first, but if you do have sensitive skin or easily irritated skin, we would suggest washing it first.
Read our article on : How to wash your bedsheets
What to do if pilling occurs?
As mentioned, piling is natural and inevitable but here are some tips to get rid when piling occurs.
1. If piling is on a small section of area, use your fingers to pluck the fuzz ball out or use a razor blade to comb out the fuzz balls.
2. If it occurs on a large section of area, you may consider sending it to a professional laundry service as they are equipped with the necessary equipment to remove the fuzz balls