How To Wash A Wool Jumper & Look After It

How To Wash A Wool Jumper & Look After It

how to wash a wool jumper and look after it

Many people get put off buying wool jumpers because they are hard to clean and look after. It’s a great shame as wool is such a wonderful fabric. Unlike synthetic fabrics wool is breathable, very warm and once it has eventually been worn out (which usually takes a long time) it is 100% biodegradable so it’s good for the environment too.

To show you that it is not that difficult to wash and care for your wool jumper we have put a little guide together to show you how to do it:

1.Don’t wash it! (or at least not very often)

The great thing about wool jumpers is that you don’t have to wash them as often as knitwear made from synthetic fibres. Wool does not stain easily and does not easily absorb aromas, making it ideal for multiple wears, therefore making it ideal for outdoor use. So if your jumper isn’t physically dirty and has no distinctive odours, there is no rush to wash it!

machine washing wool jumpers

2. Hand wash or machine wash

Always check the wash care label but if in doubt hand wash your wool jumpers. Most new washing machines have a wool hand wash cycle which is quite effective but for delicate wool jumpers especially hand knitted jumpers or jumpers made from mohair we would recommend hand wash only.

how to hand wash a wool jumper

3. How to hand wash your wool jumper

a. Soak your wool jumper in cold water a few hours before washing it. This will allow the wool fibres to become saturated and stop them from shrinking.

b. Use a detergent that is made for hand washing wool garments - these detergents prevent bobbling occuring and preserve the fibres. We recommend using Ecocover Delicate.

c. Add the correct amount of detergent and gently wash without rubbing the fibres together too much.

d. Finally rinse the jumper in cold or luke warm water in order to remove the soap.

4. How to dry your wool jumper

a. Never twist or wring wool jumpers or they will lose their shape.

b. Squeeze and press out all the water you can.

c. For non-delicate wool garments you can use a very low spin cycle in the washing machine (again check your wash care label) however for very delicate garments such as mohair or cashmere it is recommended to air dry.

d. Lie the jumper flat so it does not lose shape. Lying it on top of a towel will soak up additional moisture.

How to care for your wool jumper

folded wool sweaters

1. Fold them, don’t hang them

Never fold or hang a wool or cashmere jumper as they will lose their shape. Always fold them when storing them.

remove bobbles from knitwear with a bobble buster

2. Bobble buster

Bobbling is the result of two pieces of fabric rubbing together and can also occur with washing.

Make sure you remove the bobbles regularly. Invest in an electronic bobble remover. They are cheap and will make your jumper look new again. You can buy one from Lakeland here

brush your knitwear

3. Brush them

Remove hairs and excess lint with a soft clothes brush. You can buy one here.

comb your knitwear to get rid of bobbles

4. Comb them

For fine knitwear or cashmere you can use a cashmere comb to remove any excess bobbles. Buy can buy one here

cedar balls to keep moths away from your knitwear

5. Keep the moths away

Store your jumpers with cedar balls to ensure your knitwear is not attacked by moths. If you find moths holes in your knitwear put your jumpers in the freezer for 48 hours and then wash. This should kill the moth eggs. You can buy some here

6. Keep them dry

Before you store away your jumpers for the summer make sure they are bone dry to stop any mold or mildew occuring.


Jan 20, 2016

Thanks for the tip about soaking in cold water before hand washing. I haven’t dared hand wash any more after shrinking too many jumpers, but this might give me the confidence to try again!

Judy Heminsley

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