Wool yarns in balls on a wooden table
kair 101

Wool myths and truths

It’s easy to become tangled in the care advice for wool, but caring for wool is easy if you know how. That’s why we’ve demystified five of the most common myths about wool-washing.

#1: you shouldn’t wash wool 

MYTH. It's not only possible to wash your woollens at home, but actually much better than going to the dry cleaner, which involves exposure to a destructive substance known as PERC, a neurotoxin associated with profound social and environmental hazards. Washing wool at home not only preserves and stimulates the natural oils, or lanolin, in the yarns themselves, it also gives the garment as a whole a naturally fresh look and feel.

#2: you shouldn’t wash often 

TRUTH. The natural self-regulating fibres in wool require less frequent laundering than most other fabrics, so extend the life of your wool pieces, and avoid washing after every wear. How often you wash it depends on the specific wool blend, but in most cases, we recommend only every 7-10 wears. You can remove any unpleasant odours with a light airing, as well as with a spritz of our lovely refreshing Finishing Spray. 

#3: you should hand wash only 

FALSE. While some care labels might instruct you to hand wash your wool garments to protect the seams or other sewn embellishments, it’s a myth that wool must be hand washed - the advice isn’t for the sake of the fabric, and even garments with a 100% natural fibre content can usually be machine washed without risk of shrinkage. Just be sure to select the wool or hand wash cycle (which means cool temperatures, and a low or zero spin), and to always use a mesh laundry bag (to protect against snagging). 

#4: you should use a special detergent 

TRUTH. Avoid mainstream enzyme-based detergents - which will destroy the protein in the wool and leave your garment with small holes after a mere two washes - and instead choose our specially formulated Wool, Silk & Delicates Wash. It’s so important to only use detergents which contain the most gentle, caring and protective ingredients. 

#5: you should wash wool with wool 

MYTH. So long as the machine is never more than half-full, feel free to wash your woollens with other garments made of cottons or synthetics - it won’t cause shrinkage, or make the wool any more likely to attract lints and pills. Just remember that the wool cycle is a gentle one - ideal for other lightly soiled garments, but not for heavily soiled ones.  


Cover image by Pinterest

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