How To Prevent Clothes From Pilling | Our Knitwear De-pilling Guide - Clothes Doctor

How To Prevent Clothes From Pilling | Our Knitwear De-pilling Guide

It's been a chilly start to the year, so we bet that you're getting lots of use out of your favourite knitwear. Your favourite wool, cashmere or mohair jumper might be the shining star of your winter wardrobe, so it's super annoying when little bobbles, or pilling, starts to appear on your favourite jumpers. 

Luckily, we're here to help! We've brought you our ultimate knitwear de-pilling guide, where we'll explain what pilling is, how to prevent it and how to remove those irritating bobbles - here's how to prevent knitwear from pilling and our knitwear de-pilling guide.

What is pilling?

Those little bobbles you see on your jumpers are just small balls of fibres that have collected together as the result of friction between the fabric and another surface. This is why you'll notice pilling most on the sides of your jumper and the sleeves, where your arms, desk or even hand bag repeatedly rub against it. Sadly, we can't really avoid our arms rubbing against our jumper, but pilling can also be caused by the way you wash your knitwear, so we've collected some tips for helping reduce pilling while washing your clothes.

  • Wash clothes inside out - pilling can occur when clothing rubs together while in the washing machine, and it's probably less of a nightmare to find bobbles on the inside of your clothes than the outside. 
  • Wash on a short, delicate cycle, or hand wash - you want your clothing to be spun around as little as possible, with as little agitation as possible too, so keep washing machine cycles short and sweet. For your most precious garments, we recommend hand washing, as there will be far less friction at work. 
  • Wash separately - keep delicate clothes away from other, tougher clothes. If they rub up against each other, there's only going to be one loser. 
  • Air dry your clothes - we recommend you air dry your knitwear anyway, to keep the fabric from warping, but definitely ditch the dryer if you're worried about pilling, the heat will only worsen the friction!
  • Brush down clothes - for garments that you may wash less often, like coats, regularly brush down the item with a clothes brush. Try our Natural Bristle Clothes Brush!

 And if bobbles do appear?

Our washing tips will certainly slow down the process, but pilling is a natural process which all knitwear garments go through eventually, and the more luxurious and delicate the fibres, the more the pilling may show. But hold tight, we've got a knitwear de-pilling solution; those bobbles don't mean the end of the road for your favourite knitwear.

Simply get your hands on one of our knitwear de-pilling Cashmere Combs which, with its crosshatch structure, removes pilling from your clothing without damaging the fabric that's left behind. It's functional, beautiful and will keep your knitwear looking stylish for longer. Plus, knitwear de-pilling is soooo satisfying - what's not to love?


We hope that with our de-pilling advice and washing tips, your jumpers will stay looking and feeling amazing, and that bobbly sleeves become a thing of the past. Share your knitwear de-pilling transformations with us on Instagram, @clothesdoctoruk.

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Cashmere Comb in Red Cedarwood
Clothes Doctor
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