5 Quick & Easy Methods Explaining How to Shrink a Hoodie Without Ruining it- [2022 Guide]

We all have a favorite hoodie, but this roomy garment can become a little too baggy and uncomfortable over time, and you want to make it fit better.

If you have trouble with hoodies that are too big for you, you can easily learn how to shrink a hoodie to get it to the perfect fit.

For sure, the question of “how to shrink a hoodie?” crossed your mind. Don’t worry, Cleaners Advisor can help you! We’ve also covered similar guides like “does viscose shrink?” and “how long does it take to dry clean a suit?”, make sure to check them out.

You can shrink baggy sweatshirts to fit your body better and maintain that cozy feel with a little help from some techniques we’ll provide below.

In this article, you will discover what causes clothing to shrink and how to shrink a hoodie. You will also discover ten different methods that will help to answer how to shrink a hoodie. Finally, you will find tips and instructions on how to shrink a hoodie without ruining it. 


Can You Shrink a Hoodie?

Don’t worry! You can easily shrink your fabric so your hoodie fits better. Most hoodies can be easily shrunk by a couple of sizes, but this depends on the type of fibers used in the fabric.

Some are pullovers, while others zip up the front, and every hoodie has a hood and some sort of pocket to keep your hands toasty and warm. When it comes to shrinkage, fabrics vary, which can be a good or bad thing. Some fabrics, no matter how hard you try, will not shrink.

Many hoodies are made of a knit fleece with one smooth, knitted side and one fleecy, velvety side. This fabric is typically made of 100% cotton, 100% polyester, or a 50/50 blend of these two materials.

Cotton, on the other hand, does not fall into this category. If your hoodie is way too big and you want to shrink it drastically, you’re in luck if it’s made of 100 percent cotton.

While some are made of Polyester fabric; it’s stain-resistant, wrinkle-resistant, and water-resistant.

On the downside, its high durability makes it shrink resistant, which can be a real problem when trying to resize clothes like a cotton/polyester blend sweatshirt. Cotton is a natural cellulose material that shrinks when exposed to heat. 

Although polyester is not cellulose, water temperatures above 176 degrees Fahrenheit can change the chemistry of this man-made material, causing it to shrink.

The exception to this rule is what is called preshrunk clothing. If your sweatshirt has gone through this preshrinking process, you won’t be able to shrink it much further. On the plus side, manufacturers use this treatment more frequently on t-shirts than on sweatshirts.


How to Shrink a Hoodie?

Depending on the material and the amount of shrinkage desired, there are a few different methods for shrinking a sweatshirt or a cotton sweater. Fortunately, all of the techniques are simple and take little time to complete. So, grab your hoodie, check the care label, and let’s get started.

1. Washing Machine

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Courtesy of “wikihow.com”

Washing your hoodie is the simplest way to shrink it. If you must wash a hoodie under normal circumstances, always use cold water and an air-dry method to avoid making the inside of the fleece all matted.

a. Put your hoodie in the washing machine by itself. Some fabrics will bleed dye when exposed to hot water, and you don’t want to ruin your other clothes. Furthermore, you don’t want to shrink any other clothing accidentally during this process.

b. Then, set your washer to hot water and choose a delicate or permanent-press cycle. Add a normal amount of detergent.

c. Complete the wash and rinse cycles.

d. Remove the wet garment from the washing machine and air dry it. Smooth it out flat on a sweater drying rack if you have one. If you don’t have one, drape it over a shower curtain rod. You don’t want to hang it, which could cause the shoulder to protrude in an unusual way.

When the hoodie has completely dried, try it on to see if it fits more snuggly. If it is still too loose, you can combine the washer method with the dryer method described below.

You’ll see how to shrink a hoodie in this video below.

2. Dryer

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Putting a wet hoodie in the dryer will almost certainly cause it to shrink by two sizes, at least the first time! Following that, additional shrinking may appear insignificant.

Never put your hoodie in the dryer if you don’t want it to shrink. Allow it to air dry after washing. This will also keep the fluffy fleece inside it safe.

But if you want to shrink the hoodie, follow these steps:

a. Use either the washing machine or the boiling water method. This will result in a wet hoodie.

b. Put the wet sweatshirt in the dryer.

c. Set the dryer to the highest tumble dry setting.

d. Allow the hoodie to go through this cycle all the way if you want it to shrink by up to 20%. Tumbling and heat cause fibers to contract, causing the garment to shrink overall.

e. If you only want it to shrink slightly, take it out halfway through the drying cycle and drape it over your shower curtain rod to finish drying.

3. Hairdryer

Shrink A Shirt with A Hair Dryer

The hairdryer method allows you to shrink portions of your hoodie without making a big mess. However, it is a bit more hands-on and takes some time. But you shouldn’t expect more than minimal shrinkage from this method.

a. Dampen the area of the hoodie that you want to shrink. This is simple to do with a clean spray bottle full of water or by soaking the area in cool water and squeezing it between two towels.

b. Spread your hoodie out on another clean towel so you can easily access the damp potion. You should do this near an outlet for your hairdryer.

c. Plug in your hair dryer and set it to the highest temperature setting if it has multiple temperature options.

d. Move the hairdryer back and forth over the damp fabric with the hairdryer. The nozzle should be close to but not touching the fabric.

e. Continue until the hoodie is warm and dry.

f. You may need to flip the hoodie over and repeat the process on the other side.

4. Boiling Water

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The most dramatic way to shrink your hoodie is to immerse it in hot water. While it is not the simplest method because you must deal with a large pot of boiling water, it is extremely effective. You should only try this if you really want your hoodie to shrink as much as possible.

a. Bring a deep pot of water to a boil, large enough to accommodate the size of your clothes. Remove the sweatshirt from the boiling water and carefully place it in the water.

b. Push the material into the water with a large spoon to submerge it. Allow it to rest in the water for five minutes before carefully removing it with tongs. Allow the material to sit in the water for ten minutes if you want it to shrink more.

c. After it cools enough to handle, wring out the excess water with your hands and place it in the clothes dryer. For the best shrinkage, dry it on the highest heat setting. If the clothing is still too big, repeat the process to shrink it even more.

And this’s how to shrink a hoodie in boiling water.

5. Ironing

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Ironing a portion of your hoodie is another easy, mess-free way to shrink a small portion of the garment. You probably don’t want to use this method if you want to shrink the entire hoodie a size or two, but it can be very effective in shrinking just the hood, waistband, and so on.  

a. Before starting to iron, test your iron on the inside of the waistband Check that the iron’s high heat does not damage the fabric. You can also place a pressing cloth over the material as you go to prevent scorch marks.

b. You can use the squirt function on your iron to dampen the area you want to shrink. If not, spritz the garment with clean water from a spray bottle to prepare it. If not,

c. You can use your iron’s steam setting throughout the process if it has one. If not, spritz a little more water as you go. The best results will be obtained by combining moisture and heat.

d. Spread out the hoodie so that the section you want to shrink lies smoothly on your ironing board. Repeatedly move the iron back and forth over the damp area.


How to Shrink a Cotton Fabric Hoodie?

Cotton fibers are natural and shrink quickly when heated to low or medium temperatures. Synthetic fibers, on the other hand, resist shrinkage and require high temperatures to shrink.

So this’s how to shrink a hoodie made of cotton fabric:

1. Hold your clothing under a warm water faucet to saturate it. Wring the excess water out of the material with your hands and place it in the clothes dryer.

2. Set the clothes dryer to low heat for minimal shrinkage and high heat for maximum shrinkage.


How to Shrink a Polyester Hoodie?

Polyester is a man-made synthetic polymer that does not shrink as easily as cotton. The fibers are more resistant to shrinkage and necessarily require higher temperatures to achieve the desired size.

This’s what you can do to shrink a polyester hoodie:

1. High heat is required to shrink polyester materials. Before placing your clothes in the pot, bring a large pot of water to a boil and remove it from the heat. Allow the clothes to sit for 15 minutes.

2. Pull the item out of the water with tongs and place it in the dryer with dry towels. Dry the clothes in the highest setting possible. If the polyester does not shrink properly the first time, repeat the process.


Professional Tips for Shrinking a Hoodie Properly

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You should be able to safely try the methods described in this article to shrink your hoodie without destroying it.

However, it’s impossible to predict exactly how a piece of clothing will shrink. In some cases, you may end up with too-small sleeves, a scorched design, or simply too much shrinking.

Below are a few tips and instructions that will help you shrink a hoodie without ruining it:

1. Inside the garment, read the manufacturer’s care label. This will guide you on how to wash it safely. If the care label says you can wash the hoodie in hot water, you can safely use the washing machine method to shrink it.

2. The label will also tell you whether the hoodie is made of cotton or polyester. Use a shrinking method that is suitable for the material.

3. To avoid damaging the printed design on your hoodie, you should avoid using boiling water or a washing machine. Instead, use your hairdryer to target the areas you want to shrink. When exposed to excessive heat or moisture, some heat-set designs may crack or fade.

4. To avoid stretching, lay your hoodie on a drying screen or flat surface rather than a hanger or clothesline. When the item is completely dry, hang it on a properly sized hanger.


How to Shrink a Hoodie FAQ


To Wrap Up

Now that you know how to shrink a hoodie with the five effective methods above by following the instructions we mentioned in this Cleaners Advisor article. it’s time to put this knowledge into practice!

Before putting your hoodie in the washer or dryer, read the washing instructions on the label–some materials require special care.

If you want to share any tips or tricks on how to shrink a hoodie, leave it in the comments box below.

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