Cleaning Tips, Guides & Resources

8 Effective Ways to Remove Lint from Clothes

Adriana Aziz
January 3, 2023
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As clothing begins to get worn down with usage, the tiny fibres on the outer layers of your clothes tend to come off during washes or drying cycles. These eventually settle down on the fabric again to become the problem you know as lint.

While there are ways to prevent the build-up of lint, like ensuring your pockets are empty before washes or using dryer sheets in your laundry cycles, there comes a time when you have to learn how to get rid of lint after it has already found its way back to your clothes. Fortunately, it’s a fairly simple thing to do, especially with this guide that will help you find one way or another to get rid of lint from your clothing. Take a look!

#1 Lint-Roller

woman using lint roller on hung brown sweater

Starting things off simple, you can use a dedicated, commercially available lint-roller. You can find these at most supermarkets in the laundry section, or at textile and pet stores as well. Begin by removing the wrap from the roller section, and then roll it across the fabric you are cleaning, and you should see the lint get picked up on the roller. As you keep doing this, the roller will slowly stop being as tacky. When this happens, you must peel back one layer of the roller, and expose a new, sticky sheet underneath to continue removing lint from clothes. 

#2 Lint Brush

woman using lint brush on brown blanket

As an alternative, if you do not find a lint-roller, you can consider purchasing a lint brush. Lint brushes look like a hairbrush with regard to their shape, but they have a pad to catch lint instead of bristles. Similar to the softer side of velcro, the pad needs to be brushed against the fabric to gather the lint and pull it off the fabric. The key here is to brush the entire garment in one direction, beginning at the top, and ending at the bottom hem.  

#3 Dryer Sheets

person putting dryer sheets into empty dryer

Since dryer sheets are designed to remove static and prevent lint from building up, you can use a dryer sheet to rub the lint off the fabric. Simply take the sheet, and use it to wipe away the lint in a single direction. You should see it start to gather and you can then remove the built-up lint manually. 

#4 Wide Packaging Tape

close up of man holding wide packaging tape

Cut strips of the tape, place it on the garment, and peel it back to remove the lint. Besides this, you could try wrapping some tape around your palm (with the adhesive side facing outwards), and then placing your palm on the cloth and lifting it. This should achieve the same results as a lint-roller without the added convenience of seamlessly rolling the tool over your clothes. 

Of course, if you’d like to make this method more convenient, you could wrap a rolling pin in tape, with the sticky side facing out, and try that instead. Rolling this home-made lint-roller across the fabric should pull the lint off a large area pretty quickly. 

#5 Rubber Glove

two yellow rubber gloves on a white background

The rubber on a dishwashing glove is a great alternative to help remove lint. Simply put the glove on, and slowly rub your hand across the fabric in one direction. This gathers all the lint and pushes it off the fabric as you keep rubbing the glove on the cloth. As an added bonus, this trick works for removing animal fur as well

#6 Shaving Razor

man using razor to remove lint from white mattress

If you don't already know, a regular shaving razor can do a brilliant job of removing lint as well. Capable of removing pilling on fabric along with lint, a razor is definitely an option worth considering. Simply take a clean, dry razor, place it on the fabric, and proceed to slide the razor downwards across the fabric to "shave" the first layer off. As and when needed, shake the razor so the lint falls off, and continue shaving off the lint until everything is removed.

NOTE: Avoid using too much pressure or holding the razor at an odd angle, or you may cut into the fabric and damage it. 

#7 Damp Sponge/Scouring Pad

red sponge on a white background

The abrasive nature of a sponge or scouring pad works in your favour here because it can be used to remove lint too. After wetting the sponge or pad, you should squeeze it out to get rid of excess water, and then gently rub it against the garment in question. The key is to use the rough side since it is more effective at catching lint or loose fibres, and to ensure that you are working on small sections of the cloth at a time. 

#8 Nylon Sock/Pantyhose

top view of a pair of nylon stockings on a white background

As another quick-fix, you can use a nylon sock or a pair of pantyhose as well. The nylon works well to catch all the lint, so you can just put your hand into the sock or pantyhose, and use it like the rubber glove to rub the lint away.

 

The build-up of lint can really put a damper on your entire outfit for the day; therefore, learning how to get rid of it will definitely help you look your best in your clothes! With the different methods described above, you can remove lint from clothing no matter how much of the fibre you are dealing with! That said, however, it is worth pointing out that preventing lint from building up is the easier option against removing it from your clothes. 

As much as possible, ensure your washer filters and dryer traps are cleaned well, and use a bit of white vinegar in your washes, or dryer sheets in the dryer cycle to keep static to a minimum which, in turn, prevents the lint from sticking.

Adriana Aziz is the operations manager at MaidForYou. With over 6 years of experience managing cleaning operations, she knows all the best hacks when it comes to cleaning residential and commercial buildings. With expert experience in managing house cleaning operations, interior design and logistics. She spends her free time with her family and as a freelance food critic.

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