How to Shrink Sweatpants

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How to Shrink Sweatpants

Sweatpants/joggers are super comfy because they are made of part cotton. The problem is that they stretch really easily and will make your sweats look baggy. How to shrink sweatpants is one of the easiest things you can do because if you are not careful you can shrink them by washing them.

Sweatpants cannot be washed with regular clothes because the fabric softener will shrink them. Below this paragraph is the best way to wash sweatpants to avoid getting a loose waist and making them get baggy after each wash.

How To Wash A Sweatpants

This washing process is the best way you can wash a new sweatpants that you have just bought and you want to keep them as tight as possible without them getting baggy. Use this method as well for further washes.

Steps To Take:

1. Take 10 or fewer of your sweatpants and place them into the washing machine. The fewer sweatpants, the less they will tie together with others and get stretched during the washing process. Only wash the sweatpants. Do not wash it with other clothes.

2. Pour some laundry detergent into the dispenser. Don’t worry the detergent will not shrink the sweats with this washing process. Turn the washing machine on to the coldest setting for no more than a 30-minute wash cycle.

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3. Let them wash until it is done. If want you can give the washer an extra spin cycle to get more water out. Do not twist the sweatpants to get more water out because it will break the cotton fibers and make the pants baggy.

4. Place the sweat pants outside or somewhere to air dry once it’s done, your sweats are now clean without shrinking or getting baggy. Do Not Put Your Sweats In The Dryer

How to Shrink Sweatpants In 6 Ways

Below are 6 methods you can use to shrink your sweat pants and make them fit much better from the waist down to the ankles.

1. How to Shrink Sweatpants In Dryer

putting hollister sweatpants in dryer

Heat is the number 1 enemy of cotton products because cotton shrinks when heated up by 3%. A dryer drum is heated and can get to temperatures over 100 degrees so imagine how small it can make your sweat pants after a few minutes.

What other people do not tell you is that if it stays too long in the dryer it can make the sweatpants get too small. So here is the proper way to do it.

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Steps To Take:

1. I remembered doing 1-2 sweatpants at a time in the dryer so that you can monitor how much it is shrinking.

2. Add some water into a spray bottle and spray it all over the sweatpants you are trying to shrink. The extra moisture will make the sweatpants shrink even better in the dryer.

3. Put the dryer on the hottest setting and put the joggers in it for 20 minutes at first. This 20-minute is to see how much they shrink because you will need to try them on because it can shrink down 1 size.

4. If when you try them on it still too baggy. Put them in for the next 5-10-15 or 20 minutes base on how tight you want them. Remember after each drying cycle try them on to see how they fit.

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2. Use Iron On Sweatpants To Shrink It

As mentioned above heat will shrink cotton. That’s is why when you look on a cast iron fabric selector you see a cotton option. This option is to prevent exactly what you are about to do which is shrinking your sweatpants. For this method make sure you have an ironing board and not the bed so that the heat can spread evenly through the sweatpants and shrink them properly.

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This method is most useful when it comes to tightening certain areas of your sweatpants that are baggy. For example the pocket areas, thigh area, and waist area. If you try to shrink the entire pants with the iron it will take too long so focus only on areas that need to be tightened because it was stretched out.

Steps To Take:

1. Lay your sweat pants flat on an ironing board and locate the area that you want to shrink to match the rest of your pants. These areas are the pockets and thigh section.

2. You can use the squirting function on the iron to slightly wet the area or use a spray bottle with water to wet the area to make it shrink even more. Put the iron on the hottest setting and run it over the area you are trying to shrink for 5 minutes. Just make sure you are not burning the material.

3. Do this for all the areas you want and try on the sweatpants to see how well it fits. If it is still too baggy, use the iron on it for a longer period of time until it is ok for you.

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4. How To Make Sweatpants Tighter With Fabric Softener

Using fabric softener to shrink your sweatpants can sound a little scary because you are wondering how does the fabric softener shrinks it and will it do it to other clothes. If the other clothes are made of cotton and you wash it on a hot setting then yes it can shrink it.

Fabric softener softens the fabric in clothes but will only shrink it if you wash the clothes with hot water. So just always remember to put the washing machine on cold if you do not want to shrink your other cotton clothes.

Steps To Take:

1. Place the sweats in the washing machine and add both laundry detergent and fabric softener. Put the machine on the hottest setting and let them wash. 

2. If you are going to dry the sweatpants in the dryer, wash them for a shorter time in the washing machine. This can cause them to shrink twice if they stay in both for too long. Air drying your sweat pants is recommended if you washed them in a washing machine with hot water.

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5. Using Washing Machine To Shrink Sweatpants

This method is similar to using fabric softener to shrink your sweat pants. All you need to do is give the sweat pants a regular wash in the machine with a medium to hot water setting and then place them in the dryer to dry.

Most of the time the sweatpants will shrink one size down with this method. That is why when you wash certain clothes they feel so much tighter when you put them on. The only drawback with this method is that you won’t be able to control how much they shrink and will end up knowing when you dry them.

They might feel a little tight but will stretch a little to fit the way your body is over a few minutes of wearing them.

6. Shrink Sweatpants With Hot Water

sweatpants in bathroom being prepared to shrink

Using this method is when you want to be more involved with shrinking your sweatpants. With this method, you can take them out of the water anytime, shrink any area of the pants you want to and shrink them as small as possible.

Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit or 100 degrees celsius which is the point where the cotton gets to its weakest point and will be able to contact and shrink the sweat pants so you will need to be careful.

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Tools Needed:

Steps To Take:

1. Full a large container that you can add boiling hot water to that won’t melt. It is best to place it in the bathtub and boil the water on your stove and pour it into the container. If the water in your shower can get hot to this point, you can use that instead.

2. Carefully dip the sweatpants in the hot water and leave it for 30 minutes. If you used the shower head hot water, you can leave it running in the container so that the water can stay hot all the time. If you used the stove add more hot water every 10 minutes to the container.

3. When the time is up take the sweatpants out and let them drip dry outside or use the washing machine spin cycle to get out the water. Do not twist the sweatpants because this will break the cotton fibers and make the sweats baggy.

Can You Shrink Sweatpants?

shrink sweatpants hanging in the closet

Yes you can shrink your sweatpants and the easiest way to do that is by spraying water on the sweatpants and placing it in the dryer on the hottest setting for 30 minutes and it will shrink the seats one size down. To shrink individual areas, use an iron on the hottest setting and iron the area for 5 to 10 minutes.

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How to Make Sweatpants Waist Tighter

drawstring in sweatpants waist

Most sweatpants’ waists are made of a drawstring or an elastic band. Over time heat and constant pulling will wear out the elastic in the waist and make it unwearable. To fix this problem you either have to replace the drawstring or the elastic in some of the pants. Some sweatpants allow you to do this while others don’t. Only try to replace the elastic if the pants were made to do that by you.

Replacing The Draw String:

To replace the drawstring, pull it out of the pants and measure it so that you can order a new one or replace it using the next drawstring from the next pants that might be too small for you.

Hold the one end of the drawstring and push it through the hole and slowly guide it through. What I find easy to do is to push it in an inch and then push the cloth over the drawstring and pull it. Use a push and pull method.

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Can You Wear Sweatpants To Work At Walmart?

Walmart and other stores like Target, Dollar Tree, and Dollar General do allow you to wear sweatpants at work if it is not in a bright or outrageous color with a normal design.

Can I Put Polyester In The Dryer?

Yes, you can put polyester in the dryer because it is much stronger than cotton and won’t shrink that much under heat. Polyester is a systematic material made from waste, and petroleum, and is kind of a plastic because all different types of materials are used to make it. Cotton on the other hand is a natural fabric and it doesn’t go well with heat.

Does Air Dry Shrink Clothes?

The answer to this question varies depending on the material clothes you are working with. To dry clothes that are made of cotton, this is the best and safest way to dry them so that you can make them last longer without shrinking or getting baggy. For other material clothes, air-drying them will take too long so you need to dry them in the dryer.

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