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Does Cashmere Shrink?

by Ying Tang November 20, 2021 4 min read

Yes. Cashmere will be shrinked if it is exposed to moisture or high-heat. So, in order to keep your cashmere from shrinking, you need to store your cashmere correctly and do not wash it in warm to hot water.

a shrinked cashmere sweater

Sometimes, when we go to frontstore and buy one cashmere sweater, we find it is bigger to fit our body. Do not worry about it, after you wear it for months and wash it in a speical way, it will become tighter to fit you. 

Following information is why does cashmere shrink.

Why Does Cashmere Shrink?

There are two reasons for cashmere shrinking.

First, the structure of cashmere determines its shrinkage. Cashmere is made of wool fabric, like all wool fabrics, it is sensitive to high-heat and moisture. If your cashmere exposed to moisture or near to high-heat, it will shrink.

The second reason is you wash your cashmere in the wrong way. If you wash your cashmere in warmer even hot water, it will definitely shrink. The ideal way is hand washing in cool water. It will help you keep your cashmere’s shape intact for a long time.

Read more information on how to wash cashmere in our blog.

Does cashmere shrink when washed?

A 100% yes. Like any other wool material, Cashmere is prone to shrinking when washed with hot or even warm water. The only way to wash Cashmere clothing without shrinking it is to use cold water to clean it.

So, you must be very careful when stocking or washing cashmere clothing to avoid shrinkage.

Does Cashmere Shrink in Hot Water?

Yes, Cashmere is highly vulnerable to high-heat and moisture. Even if you hand wash your cashmere pieces, if you use hot water it will still shrink.

If you want to shrink your garment, you just dip it into a wash bin filled with hot water. It is the best way to help you shrink the bigger size sweater to fit yourself.

Does Cashmere Shrink When Hand Washed?

Not 100%. Handwashing is the ideal method to wash cashmere, only in the condition that you hand wash it with hot water, it will shrink.

Your only alternative to avoid shrinking Cashmere while washing it is to wash using cold water. Hot or warm water application will almost always shrink Cashmere fabric.

Does Cashmere shrink in the dryer? Indeed, it does.

Most dryers use hot air to dry out your washed clothes. Any kind of heat application poses shrinkage risk for your Cashmere cloth. If you’d like to shrink down your Cashmere pullover, simply toss it in the dryer after you’re done washing it.

However, if you’d like it to remain the same size, we recommend you to only use a dryer which has the option for air dry. Of course, the best way to dry Cashmere garments is to allow it to naturally dry in the air. If you’re in a hurry, there’s nothing wrong with tossing it in the dryer for a couple of minutes to expedite the drying process.

Does Cashmere Shrink When Dry Cleaned?

No. Most cashmere fabrics are labeled as dry clean only.

That’s because cashmere is susceptible to water and heat. When you wash cashmere with hot water, it will likely shrink.

And when you wash with cool water in the machine, the fabric is exposed to constant pulling. With prolonged exposure, the machine will eventually destroy the material.

Unlike hand wash or machine washing, dry clean involves almost no water usage. The cleaning procedure does not use water. Instead, it is a liquid cleaning agent.

The fabric is then exposed to heat to dry. This heat can cause your cashmere to shrink, but not significant enough to make a difference.

If you don’t wish to have your cashmere sweater shrunk, you ought to hand wash it.

Does Cashmere Shrink Over Time?

When stock and wash properly cashmere won’t shrink over time.

If you take the incorrect washing and drying methods, you will notice shrinking immediately. For example, if you expose cashmere to high temperatures, the shrinkage will be immediately noticeable.

If you wash cashmere by hand and avoid using the dryer for extended periods, then your cashmere will retain its shape and size for years to come.

Sometimes, you found your expensive cashmere sweater shrunk, and you want to reshape it and wear it more days or years, follow instruction below to go on.

How to Unshrink Cashmere?

If you found your expensive cashmere shrunk, there is a hope to fix it. Here is how to do:

  • Prepare a large wash bin filled with cool water
  • Drop shampoo into the cool water
  • Dip your cashmere into wash bin for 2 hours
  • Dispose of the water
  • Press the cashmere lightly with your hands to remove extra water on a flat surface, pull the edges as you see fit. Don’t tug too hard. You only want to stretch and not damage it.
  • Hold the fabric with weights to make it stay in a stretched form.
  • Leave it for an hour.
  • Check the material afterward to see if it’s back to its original size.
  • Leave the fabric stretched for as long as you need
  • Rinse the cashmere with cool water

More tips to unshrink cashmere garment:

  • Step1: Wash your cashmere by hand in cool water
  • Step2: Enlarge its size by one coat hanger
  • Step3: Leave it on flat for 2 hours
  • Step4: Air dry it
  • Step5: Stock it in your closet


Cashmere shrinking usually make us very sad due to our expensive cashmere garments. If we treat it in proper way, we can reshape our cashmere sweaters or pants.

 About Ying Tang

Miss Ying, cashmere products quality controller in Dr.Muxue, with 10 years of experience in cashmere material selecting and cashmere material purchasing, deeply knows the process of cashmere garment producing as well as how to take care of them.