Sustainability made simple

How to Remove Lint From Clothes: 15 Eco-Friendly Methods

how to remove lint from clothes
Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / blende12

No need to buy new things to get rid of the annoying fuzz: Learn how to remove lint from clothes with things you already have at home – as well as some recommendable products.

You might think of lint as that stuff you regularly have to remove from the lint trap in your dryer. And that’s what it is — but it can also accumulate on your clothes where it is even more annoying.

Lint is made of small fibers that come off of your clothes and other textiles as a result of the friction of everyday use, and from being washed and dried. All textiles will disintegrate over time, but there are a few ways to prevent lint from cropping up so often.

Did you know that you can make use of dryer lint? Check out our six tips.

How to Remove Lint From Your Clothes Using What You Have at Home

Once you know how to remove lint from your clothes in various ways, you'll find that you always have something on hand when you need it.
Once you know how to remove lint from your clothes in various ways, you’ll find that you always have something on hand when you need it. (Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / Myriams-Fotos)

Lint can accumulate faster than you’d like. There are products designed to solve that issue, but the most sustainable product is always the one you don’t buy — so why not just remove the lint with things you probably already have at home?

  1. Use a damp cloth: Dampen a cloth and rub down the garment you are trying to de-lint. The friction needed to remove lint happens when you rub the damp cloth on the garment, making small balls of lint from which you can easily remove.
  2. Pumice stone: Just as it can remove calluses from your skin, it can remove lint from your feet. For hygienic reasons, it’s best to only use the pumice stone on your clothes when it hasn’t been used on skin.
  3. Old pantyhose: If you have old pantyhose that are worn out, use these to remove lint from your clothes by placing your hand inside the pantyhose and rubbing it down the garment. This friction will create balls of lint that can be easily removed.
  4. Reusable dryer sheet: They have the same antistatic properties as regular dryer sheets, and can help you remove lint from clothing, including outside the dryer.
  5. Distilled white vinegar: This is a method you have to employ during the wash, so it can’t help you remove lint from clothing that you are already wearing, for example. Just add one cup to your laundry during the final rinse cycle and your clothes should come out fuzz-free.
  6. Antistatic spray: If you already own antistatic spray, you can use it on your clothes if you know the material tends to attract lint during wear. We don’t recommend buying a spray just for this use though, as there are better options.

Reusable Products

If you own many garments that tend to cause issues with lint, or the options above aren’t suitable for you, it might be worth purchasing a specialized product. Here are your options:

  1. Use a Lint Brush: Lint brushes are designed to remove lint, are reusable, and produce no plastic waste. There are various kinds, some with bristles, to choose from, and they are made to last.
  2. Use a Lint Shaver: Lint shavers are more sustainable than lint rollers because they are not made from plastic, and can be reused. They also work on various fabrics and can be used on furniture. They are also portable.
  3. Use a Washable Lint Roller: These look like the plastic lint rollers that you might know, but they do not produce any plastic waste. You simply use this roller like you would a plastic lint roller, then remove the lint, wash the lint roller with water, and use it again! You can reuse these many times and some even come with a portable travel option.

How to Prevent Lint Accumulation

Air dry your clothes to prevent lint from accumulating.
Air dry your clothes to prevent lint from accumulating. (Foto: CC0 / Pixabay / wilhei)

Rather than removing lint from your clothes regularly, it might make sense to look into how to prevent lint from accumulating so quickly in the first place. Here are some simple ways to do so:

  1. Wash in cold water: Lint loves heat and static, so cold water removes this element and thereby creates less lint. A cold water wash is also a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, an added bonus.
  2. Wash inside-out: This is an effective way to both prevent lint from forming and to limit it once it has formed, containing the lint to the inside of the garment.
  3. Separate “lint heavy” items: Lint “heavy” items are those such as blankets or items with zippers and buttons that usually accumulate a lot of lint. By separating these from your more delicate items, you limit the lint on your clothes and other items, saving you time later.
  4. Check pockets before washing: Sometimes lint also comes from things leftover in your pocket before washing.
  5. Hand-wash your clothes: Hand-washing clothes maintains their integrity longer than using a washing machine and creates less lint.
  6. Dry laundry naturally: The dryer is the ultimate culprit in lint accumulation. Skip the dryer altogether and hang or air dry your clothes and textiles, particularly those that are heavy accumulators of lint. This leaves more of the textile intact and removes the headache of the lint trap being too full. Air drying or hang drying your clothes is less of a burden on the environment as well.

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