There’s no better feeling than putting on a brand new gym shirt or pair of yoga pants. They are comfortable, smooth, fit perfectly and smell great. But somewhere along the line, things start to wear down. Threads break. The fit loosens. The fabric seems to deteriorate. A lingering odor develops.
This is not the natural life cycle for gym clothes, yoga pants or any other athletic apparel.
These things start to deteriorate because the care instructions are not being following, which is a surprise to most people because they aren’t even aware their gym clothes have different washing and care instructions than their average everyday clothes!
Why Dryers Damage Your Gym Clothes
Dryers damage your gym clothes in two ways-- through excessive heat and through excessive friction.
The heat from dryers are great for drying your everyday cotton clothes as fast as possible. However, elastic, spandex and polyester lose their form and shape when exposed to the high temperatures of a dryer. This causes the clothing to lose its shape and stretching capability over time.
On top of heat damage, dryers expose your clothes to a lot of friction while tumbling. Since the elastic, spandex and polyester found in your gym clothes are susceptible to pilling and loose threads caused by excessive friction, gym clothes should avoid the dryer at all costs.
So What’s The Right Way To Dry Gym Clothes?
Air drying your gym clothes, or any clothes that contain elastic, spandex or polyester is the way to go. Drying racks make it especially easy to air dry clothes, but you could also simply hang the clothes over a shower rod. For yoga pants, it's generally recommended instead to lay them out and flip them every few hours. Most washing machines have a spin cycle at the end of the wash which removes most of the retained water, so air drying your gym clothes should not take very long at all.
On top of avoiding the dryer, the second most important tip for keeping your gym clothes feeling and looking new for as long as possible is to make sure you’re using the right type of laundry detergent.
There you have it- why you should never put your gym clothes in the dryer, and how to air dry them instead! Have any questions or suggestions? Let us know on our Facebook page or our Twitter page!