Removing Pills From Fabric

Unfortunately some types of fabrics are susceptible to pilling, ruining the appearance of your clothing or linens. This is a guide about removing pills from fabric.
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November 28, 2012 Flag
10 found this helpful

It seems like it's always your old favorites that get those awful little fabric pills. Here's a tip that will help your favorite sweater go from worn out to like new again! Take a new disposable razor and lightly go across the garment. Use short strokes while pulling the fabric tight. Don't press too hard and be careful when going near the seams. Stop frequently to blow the pills out of the razor. Your clothes will be looking like new again in no time!

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December 12, 20120 found this helpful

Shawna, thanks so much for the tip. I agree that disposable razors are good tool for this, especially in a pinch. I don't spend a lot of time depilling my clothing, but it always seems to be last minute. I always know where my razors are.

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December 12, 20120 found this helpful

Shawna,

Thank you, what a great idea! I'm going to try this out this week on some items around the house. Btw, my daughter has a similar hoodie :-)

@ the other comments, remember this site is called "thrifty fun", which means finding ways to do cool stuff in a thrifty way, aka cheap/penny-pinching/"let's spend as little money as possible". Advocating spending $5 for a fabric shaver doesn't seem to follow that ideal... Especially when you can get a bag of 20 razors for $1 at the dollar store. That's $5 vs 5 cents. And at that price, these razors usually get rusty before you can use them all.

Kudos to Shawna for discovering another use for these razors.

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December 17, 20130 found this helpful

Regardless if it were the same or not, de-pillers do not work or they dont work nearly as well as a disposable razor. I would not waste the money to buy a de-piller(as I did once), a razor works wonders on fabric pills. Just be careful when using it, you dont want to knick a hole in your clothing but with caution it is pretty simple.

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October 18, 20140 found this helpful

I have been using an electric razor for getting rid of fabric pills. At least I don't ruin the item or cut myself, and it works wonderfully well.

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October 26, 20160 found this helpful

July 27, 2016 Flag
0 found this helpful

We all have that favorite sweatshirt or blanket that accidentally got put in the dryer. Well there is a way to get rid of almost all of the balled up lint that has been stuck there. Just take a razor preferably new and run it over the fuzzies stuck to your sweatshirt.

before

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September 9, 2008 Flag

Instead of using a lint shaver, try using a block of pumice stone. Those nasty tiny pills, and small specs will disappear onto the stone. It's easy to clean the stone that once helped the rough spots on your feet.

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Read More...

October 5, 2010 Flag
4 found this helpful

Remove fuzz balls from sweaters with a shaver. Go over the surface slowly and carefully with a disposable razor.

By duckie-do from Cortez, CO

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October 22, 20110 found this helpful

Use an electric razor to remove pilling on any clothes. It won't cut the material and just shaves off the pilling. I use an old electric razor for this.

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October 22, 20110 found this helpful

Great idea! Thanks, I have several sweaters I thought I was going to have to get rid of!

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January 24, 2008 Flag
0 found this helpful

How do I avoid pilling on clothes/sheets. I have cotton sheets that have this and this is rough to sleep on. Also my nylon nightgown is the same way. Does anyone know what causes this and how to prevent it, and how to get rid of it.

Sheila from Ontario, Canada

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February 6, 20080 found this helpful

We are being ripped off. Don't buy any sheets unless they say 1 (one)ply. Manufacturers are taking one ply and spliting them into two ply, so they can increase the thread count. that means 200 thread count becomes 400 and so on. Take them back.

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February 15, 20080 found this helpful

Thank you for all your suggestions.

Sheila

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April 23, 20080 found this helpful

The best way to get rid of pilling is to get a razor and shave it! Yep, you heard me right! It works a treat. Just hold the sheet flat and taut and shave away!

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Anonymous Flag
October 13, 20120 found this helpful

Wow, I used the razor method mentioned in another comment and it worked like a dream! I finished my entire fitted sheet in about 5 minutes and it feels brand new again! People, seriously, just use an average razor blade and shave until they're gone. No need to buy new sheets! :D

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December 22, 2014 Flag
0 found this helpful

I use a sweater comb to remove pills from lots of different fabrics and it works great. One drawback is that it has only a small surface for removing the pills, so I think next I will try a suede shoe brush.

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August 2, 2004 Flag
0 found this helpful

For some reason, I seem to have an incredible ability to develop pills on my clothing. What causes this and what can be done to eliminate it or at least decrease it? Sometimes I get pills within just a few wearings!!

I thought that perhaps it was our water, as it is somewhat hard, but then I noticed that some of my clothes had pills down the front and back, but not on the sleeves! I've also noticed that some types of clothing/fabric pills faster than others. Is it the brand or the type of fabric used?

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!

Jill

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July 13, 20080 found this helpful

I found that if I wash my clothes with towels wash clothes or rags- it causes terrible pills - since not combining them I have saved my clothes.

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July 25, 20080 found this helpful

Waaa! I recently splurged and purchased high thread count sheets and after washing them have pilling that feels uncomfortable to lie on! I know it is from mixing various materials together in the wash.

I used to work in a dry cleaners and they actually have a lava-rock like item that we used to lightly run over clothing which pulls and cuts pills off. Can't FIND it available to the public though. Even tried a pumice stone for nails (which is similar to the Dry Cleaner item) but it isn't as effective.

Have tried a clothes shaver, no good. Don't want to give away my sheets but can't sleep on them. Any effective PILL REMOVERS OUT THERE?

Help!

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January 8, 20090 found this helpful

It sounds weird, but actually I use a cheap disposable razor to shave them off. It works great.

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January 13, 20110 found this helpful

An answer for the question about pilling on sheets. I bet the sheets that you have pilling problems with is a "satin" weave sheet. If they have any synthetic fiber in them it will be even more pronounced. Manufacturers have been pushing "satin" weave for the last few years, because they can advertise a higher thread count because of the type of weave. "Satin" weave sheets pill. I doesn't mater how much you pay for them, they always look and feel terrible after a few washings. More of each thread fiber is exposed to friction in the wash machine. I always buy 100% combed cotton sheets in plain weave in the highest thread count as I can afford. These plain weave sheets are getting harder and harder to find. My sheets last for many years and are always very smooth.

If your sheets are flannel, that is another huge problem with pilling. I really don't know why some flannel sheets pill and some don't. It must have something to do with the quality of the cotton fiber.

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Anonymous Flag
February 13, 20160 found this helpful

September 6, 2013 Flag
0 found this helpful

I have two questions really. How do you keep socks and other clothes from pilling? And how do you get rid of the pills after they form?
If there are just a few pills, I can snip them off, but especially the socks form more pills than I can deal with. I am tired of throwing away perfectly good clothes because of unsightly pills.

By Janus

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September 15, 20130 found this helpful

Wash them inside out. For pills that have already formed, if they are only a few, pull 'em off (good project for when you are watching TV). If heavily pilled or white looking pills on dark clothing, I wouldn't bother. There used to be little shavers that you could use to remove pills but I never had any luck with them and don't know if they even still exist. I think this is one of those benefits of shopping thrift stores! An item's quality and durability is proven if it's already slightly used and still looks good!

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September 9, 2008 Flag
0 found this helpful

I am searching for fired lava rock, in sheet form, approx 3/4 to 1in. thick to remove pilling from clothing. If you have information on where this can be purchased please let me know. Thanks.

Fran from Canada

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September 10, 20080 found this helpful

I got mine at the dry cleaners.

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Anonymous Flag
September 10, 20080 found this helpful

A pumice stone from the drug store in the nail/foot care department will most likely work just as well and can be used for callouses, too, and most likely much less expensive ;-)

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October 5, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

What is the best rated product to remove fuzz or pills from sweaters?

By Judith from Hollis, NH

Answers:

Removing Pills From Sweaters

I use a sponge and vinegar to remove fuzz from clothing, good luck. (04/08/2010)

By kffrmw88

Removing Pills From Sweaters

I use duck tape, make take some work though, good luck. (04/09/2010)

By sally54

Removing Pills From Sweaters

If the sweater is a tight weave, I use a disposable razor. Put the sweater on an ironing board so that the board is "wearing" the sweater (front on the top of the board, back on the underside. Make sure that the sweater is perfectly smooth on the board and carefully "shave" the sweater, removing the fibres from the razor with pass. Works like a charm and I've never damaged a sweater doing this.

Unfortunately, you can't use this method if the sweater has a loose weave. Also, you can buy inexpensively, battery-operated sweater shavers that work well too. I had one many years ago and wore it out. I haven't replaced it because I just use the razor now. (04/10/2010)

By Lori45P

Removing Pills From Sweaters

You can use a razor, it works wonders! Good luck! (07/31/2010)

By Hotdomo

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