4 FAQ About Caring for Flannel Shirts

4 FAQ About Caring for Flannel Shirts

Flannel shirts are a staple of American clothing, with deep roots in the blue-collar working class. Over the years, they’ve remained popular for their versatility—worn just as often in casual settings as they are on worksites. Since the shirts are made with cotton, they need to be cared for differently to retain their comfort and resilience. Learning how to maintain them properly will ensure they remain part of your long-term wardrobe. 

Are flannel shirts machine-washable?  

Most flannel shirts can be machine washed, depending on the blend used to manufacture them. Check with your American clothing retailer or consult the shirt’s tag, which will have washing instructions. While the shirts may be machine-washable, they still need a special process to ensure the colors remain vibrant and the materials remain soft and comfortable over time. 

How do you wash flannel shirts? 

Most clothes are washed in a heavy cycle of hot water. Unfortunately, the full cycle pulls on the flannel’s threading, loosening fibers and causing pilling. The hot water exacerbates pilling and can also fade color over time. Instead, use a gentle cycle with cool or warm water to maintain the flannel shirt’s resilience and soft texture.

 However, there is a distinctive and ruggedly American charm to faded clothes. Crosscut flannel shirts provide the distressed look of well-worn clothes without the itchy stiffness older clothing often has. The flannels come with a lifetime guarantee, ensuring that despite how they may look, they’re more than ready to go the distance with you. 

Can you use a fabric softener on flannel shirts?  

You can prevent flannel shirts from stiffening and shrinking by washing them without a fabric softener. While a softener can remove soap residue, it creates a film that attaches to the shirt’s fibers. Over time, the film causes the fabric to stiffen. During the rinse cycle, add between a half cup and a full cup of vinegar to the wash. It will remove the soap residue without impacting the flannel.

 While fabric softeners are damaging to flannel shirts, you can still maintain the soft, comfortable fabric in the long term. Gentle detergents that don’t have abrasives, like chlorine, phosphates, and enzymes, effectively clean the material without stiffening it. 

How do you dry flannel shirts? 

Flannel shirts are made primarily or entirely of cotton. Like all cotton shirts, high levels of heat will cause shrinkage, even during the drying process. However, there are fast and straightforward drying options. A dryer can still be used, provided it’s set on low heat. Stay by the dryer to remove the shirt as soon as the cycle ends, which will prevent wrinkles from forming.

 Cotton can also be air-dried. Once the shirt’s out of the washer, wring the water out of the shirt by squeezing it rather than stretching it. This will dry the flannel quickly without altering its shape.



Our modern flannel manufacturing process enhances the resilience and comfort of this classic piece of rugged American clothing. Call us at (904) 619-0577 to learn more about our free shipping options.

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