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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Spandex - Sometimes A Problem

One thing I failed to mention on my mildew shirt from a few weeks ago was that it was mostly cotton with a touch of spandex. I also failed to mention that before sending it to A Cleaner World so when Mike received it, I could hear him groaning all the way from North Carolina.

The National Center for Garment Analysis reports that spandex fibers made their top ten list for problems associated with garment care for multiple years. There are two areas where consumers are experiencing problems.

1. In the manufacturing process, spandex is stretched. When the item is cleaned, that stretching/tension is relaxed and therefore the garment shrinks.
2. It is more susceptible to little pulls, pills and protruding fibers just in the course of normal wear or cleaning.

Here's hopefully some helpful advice.

1. Try to avoid purchasing garments with high spandex content.
2. If a garment contains elastane, spandex, lycra, etc. be careful to avoid abrasion in normal wear. For example, don't wear belts, use shoulder straps, wear unlined outer garments. Expect abrasion from wearing seat belts.
3. When buying keep in mind that there may be some shrinkage after the initial cleaning.
4. Clean or launder those items frequently as your body oils and perspiration can cause fiber discoloration and/or degeneration.

As always, please let us know if you have any questions or if you need any help.

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