The Complete Flannel Shirts Care Guide

All you need to know about caring your beloved flannel shirt!

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Time needed: 5 minutes.

Quick Reminders, Hints, and Tips to Care for Your Favorite Flannel Shirt

  1. Always check on your flannel shirt’s care guide

    The instructions on the tiny label are short and important.

  2. Use warm water

    Always use warm water not hot to prevent shrinkage, stretching, and loose weaving.

  3. Use white vinegar

    White vinegar is an excellent alternative to fabric softener.

  4. Always iron your flannel shirt on the reverse side

    Always iron your flannel shirt (or flannel sheets or any other material) on the reverse side. It is important to iron on the reverse side so that if your iron has some dirt from the previous pressing, the dirt will not show right in front of your favorite shirt.

  5. Never use bleach undiluted

    This can produce discoloration even if your bleach is color-safe to use. When your flannel shirt is stained, follow our instructions above or, you can fully create a distressed plaid flannel shirt by letting the bleach create its artsy design. Distressed fashion is very trendy these days!

Plaidlover.com is answering your frequently asked questions such as: Can you put flannel shirts in the dryer? Can you iron flannel? We’ve made a rundown of the best ways to care for your favorite flannel shirt.

Now that the winter season is here, our flannel shirts are all out! These shirts are a winter favorite simply because, the flannel material provides warmth and good feels. If your flannel shirt is your favorite closet item, then, you must know all the essential how-to for cleaning and caring for your favorite closet item… The flannel shirt!

Five Simple Steps on How to Wash Flannel Shirts

Let’s start off by answering the fundamental question: How should you wash flannel shirts?

Before you just put it in your machine together with your other clothes, you first must know what kind of material it is made of. If you’re not a fan of reading your clothes’ tags, you better do so.

Flannel, as a material, was made traditionally from wool. But since various innovations have happened, these days flannel is made from either cotton or synthetic fiber such as vegetable fiber. It’s important to know your flannel shirt’s material to find out the best way to wash it.

how to wash a flannel shirt
Know you flannel shirt material

That said, cotton as you know shrinks at certain water temperatures, therefore, your flannel shirt will shrink if it’s not been pre-shrunk by the manufacturers. However, over careless washing your flannel shirts can also stretch and fray over time hence it is very important to know how to wash this type of material. Washing flannel sheets are also the same.

Follow the below steps:

  • Fill your tub with warm water. Anything hotter will cause your favorite flannel shirt to shrink.
  • Add detergent to the water. Before adding detergent, make sure that you are using the appropriate amount. Most brands have instructions on how much you will need depending on the wash load. Make sure to follow these instructions to save your clothes from being sticky with detergent post-wash and also, to save on money in the long run.
  • Run your machine on a gentle wash. If your tub has manual options that allow you to maintain the temperature for washing and to rinse to remain the same all throughout, activate that. Running your favorite flannel shirts on gentle wash program will also help prevent it from fraying.
  • Once it’s on rinse, add a fabric softener. It’s wonderful how helpful the fabric softener is at preventing lint. Aside from that, it also makes your flannel shirt smell so nice after wash! If you do not have any fabric softener, you can replace it with white vinegar or a dryer sheet. Using either of the two can also prevent lint in the same way as the fabric softener does.
  • Hang your shirt to dry. Treat your flannel shirt as if it’s made from a soft fabric. Do not expose directly to the sun as it may cause the color to fade and the fabric to loosen.

Cotton as you know shrinks at certain water temperatures

Flannel shirts are normal to lint, they’re made from cotton or wool after all! When your favorite flannel shirt begins to lint, just add fabric softener come to rinse time, and it will your shirt suffer from the friction of being worn.

“Help! I stained my flannel!”

Being clumsy is normal. We’ve all gotten some chocolate stains on our shirts repeatedly. Sometimes it’s difficult to get it out especially if it’s from a food item that stains heavily such as wine, coffee, apple, or any other fruit juices. It can get frustrating!

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Faded and bleached flannel shirt
Faded flannel shirt is the new trend

Knowing how to bleach plaid flannel shirts can be quite tricky, especially since it’s a colored fabric. Nowadays, there’s a specialized bleach that you can buy to help remove stubborn stains from your plaid flannel shirts. Here are some simple steps to bleach plaid flannel shirts:

  • Fill your tub with water. Again, use warm water throughout the cycle to prevent any further damage to the clothing.
  • Add your soap and add your bleach. Let your soap and bleach dilute for a few minutes before adding your flannel shirt.
  • Add your flannel shirt and run your tub on gentle.
  • Hang your shirt to dry. Air dry is preferable without so much exposure to direct sunlight. Bleach gets activated with light and can cause color-fading.

Can you put flannel shirts in the dryer?

Drying clothes by use of dryer is very convenient. Since the flannel shirt is made from cotton or wool, it is important to take caution when putting into the dryer as you might risk the cloth to shrink.

Dryers make use of hot temperature to dry your clothes. Our expert opinion: Don’t dry it with a dryer unless you’re very sure that the material has been pre-shrunk. Just to be safe, we suggest that air drying your favorite flannel shirt is the best way to go.

Can you iron flannel?

When you’re unsure whether it’s safe to iron your flannel shirt, you can go back to check the label. If you really want to get the wrinkle out of your flannel shirt, we suggest that you find the appropriate setting on your iron to match the material. To achieve your flannel shirt’s maximum crisp look.

how to iron flannel shirt
It is very important how iron a flannel shirt

Follow these short and simple steps to iron your flannel shirt:

  • Plug in your iron and let it get warm. Usually, cotton or wool is on the hotter setting. If your shirt is made of wool, use the hot setting with steam. Again, we stress on the importance of checking your flannel shirt or your flannel sheet’s care instructions.
  • Lay out your flannel shirt (or flannel sheet) on to the ironing board. The next step to ironing your flannel shirt is to carefully lay out the flannel shirt on your ironing board as flat as you can. You can use a little bit of pressure from your hands to ease out any wrinkles present in the shirt. By doing so, you’re saving time from pressing on the cloth so much. Also, in this way, you’re making it easier to press on the fabric in the best way possible.
  • Occasionally spray water. While ironing, do not forget this simple step of occasionally spraying water on the cloth. This way, you’re also softening up the flannel shirt so that any creases or wrinkles will be easily pressed away safely.

Avoid pressing too much, or you’ll risk the cloth becoming too loose which will lead to fraying.

To answer the question: Yes, you can iron flannel. While it’s still stylish to go with your flannel shirt un-ironed (you know, rustic look is always in fashion), ironing your flannel shirts can give you a more finished look. Again, just take caution. Knowing the exact material that your flannel shirt is made out of will save you from the heartbreak of a burned flannel shirt.

Some Final Reminders, Hints, and Tips to Care for Your Favorite Flannel Shirt

washing instructions label
Washing instructions for plaid flannel shirt
  • Always check on your flannel shirt’s care guide. The instructions on the tiny label are short and important.
  • Always use warm water not hot to prevent shrinkage, stretching, and loose weaving.
  • White vinegar is an excellent alternative to fabric softener.
  • Always iron your flannel shirt (or flannel sheets or any other material) on the reverse side. It is important to iron on the reverse side so that if your iron has some dirt from the previous pressing, the dirt will not show right in front of your favorite shirt.
  • Never use bleach undiluted. This can produce discoloration even if your bleach is color-safe to use. When your flannel shirt is stained, follow our instructions above or, you can fully create a distressed plaid flannel shirt by letting the bleach create its artsy design. Distressed fashion is very trendy these days!

We hope that this post has helped you in knowing how to care for your flannels. What are you waiting for? Go ahead and strut your flannel shirt in the street, at your office, or in school. After all, caring for your favorite flannel button-down shirt is a breeze now that you know the complete steps to wash, bleaching, and ironing your favorite flannel shirt. Don’t forget our hints and tips as well for an overall complete care guide for your flannel shirts.

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