Champion Cleaners Dry Cleaning Blog - With Birmingham Area Happenings

Fuzz Balls on Your Sweaters?

Posted by David Whitehurst on Apr 12, 2011 10:00:00 AM


Photo of sweater showing "Pilling"

Ever get those teeny balls of fuzz all over your sweater?  Want to stop looking fuzzy? Here’s how!

This phenomenon is called “pilling,” and it results from short or broken fibers on the surface of the fabric getting tangled together and forming a ball called a pill.  

Why Pilling?

This happens simply from the natural abrasion of the fabric against objects and itself during normal use and wear. Pilling frequently shows up around the arm pits, the sleeves, and the front of the sweater where abrasion is most common. 

It can be minimized...and here’s how

  • turn the garment inside out before washing, and

  • wash it using a shorter wash cycle, and

  • remove it from the dryer as soon as it is no longer damp.

Odds are, though, even if you’re really careful you’ll still see these fuzz balls.  The best way to remove them at home might be a little scary to think about, but works perfectly!

To "repair" a sweater with a Pilling problem try this.

Spread the item (usually a sweater) tightly over a flat surface. Now get a razor. Yes, even just a cheap one will work!  Now, shave the sweater.  Sounds crazy, but it won’t damage the fabric itself and it will scrape off those annoying pills.  You can also cut them off gently with scissors, but it will take longer and you’re more likely to cut a hole in the fabric that way.  

You can also get a sweater stone which does a good job.  But use the razor to get the stubborn pills.

Electric Pill Removers

If you want to get a bit fancy there are battery operated pill Photo of Pill Remover resized 600removers that work like  an electric razor, but these don’t necessarily work better than elbow grease.  We use these on your sweaters.  Of course, once the pills are removed they are likely to come back, so you’ll have to give your sweater some loving attention every now and then.  If you’re gentle with it and don’t wash it too much, you can keep your sweaters looking fresh and pill-free for a long time.

Here is a link to a You Tube video showing the process with a razor.


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Topics: dry cleaners, dry cleaner, Sweater Care, Pilling

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