How to Wash Cashmere

Cashmere is delicate and shouldn’t be washed with the rest of your clothes in the washing machine. Learn how to wash cashmere the right way.

Stack of folded cashmere sweaters on a chair.
Photo courtesy of Canva.

High-quality cashmere can be expensive. So, it makes sense that you’re careful with it. Whether it’s a blanket, sweater, scarf, hat, shirt, socks, shawl, or trousers, the goal is to make it look brand new for years.

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While you can take your clothes to get them professionally dry cleaned, you don’t have to. You can wash cashmere at home. Just be sure you don’t put it in the dryer because it’ll shrink.

Learn how to keep your cashmere clothing soft, clean, and free of pills. You can take care of it without leaving your home.

Washing cashmere at home

The best way to wash cashmere at home is to do it by hand. However, it’s possible to put it in the washing machine, as long as you use the right settings. The following are the two methods that you can use to wash cashmere at home.

Hand wash method

Cashmere is delicate, which is why washing it by hand is the best method. It’ll prevent damage, which keeps it in excellent condition.

To wash it by hand, fill a tub or sink with cool water. Then, mix a tablespoon of mild detergent, baby shampoo, or cashmere shampoos, such as The Laundress Wool and Cashmere Shampoo.

Next, place your cashmere item in the water and swirl it around. Let it soak for 5 minutes.

Lastly, drain the water and rinse your item with cool water. When you’re rinsing it, don’t wring it. If you need to remove detergent, gently press the area with your fingers.

After you’ve rinsed it clean, it’s time to dry it. The best way to dry cashmere is to place it flat on a mesh rack because it allows air to flow under it. You can also spin it in a salad spinner. Surprisingly, it works very well.

If you don’t have a mesh rack or salad spinner, lay your cashmere item on a dry towel. Be sure not to put it in the dryer because that’ll ruin it.

Cashmere is known for holding water. So, it may take a while for it to dry. Just be patient.

Washing machine

Washing cashmere by hand is ideal. However, you can put it in the washing machine if you want to save time and energy.

Before you toss it in the washing machine, it’s best to put it in a mesh laundry bag. If you’re washing multiple items, place each one in its own bag.

Then, add a small amount of detergent. Use a mild detergent if you have it because it’ll be gentler on the items.

Change the washing machine setting to the delicate cycle, the water temperature on cold, and spin on low. The goal is for the washing machine to be as gentle as possible.

Once it’s finished, follow the same drying method as you would if you washed it by hand.

Storing cashmere clothing

Storing cashmere clothing the right way is how you’ll ensure it lasts longer. The key is to fold them instead of hanging them.

How you store them depends on how often you use an item. If it’s a colder season, and you have several cashmere sweaters that you like to wear, fold them and store them in a dresser or on a shelf.

During the summer or when it’s hot, fold them and store them in a cotton garment bag. Many stores offer sweater bags that you can use. The reason you want to use cotton is that it keeps bugs out, unlike plastic.

Before you put your cashmere items away, make sure you wash it. Putting it away after it has been cleaned will keep moths away and your items will last longer.

Frequently asked questions

How do I unshrink cashmere?

If you accidentally put cashmere in the dryer and it shrinks, you can save it. Fill a sink, bucket, or tub with lukewarm water and mix in two tablespoons of fabric softener. Put your cashmere item in it and let it sit for 30 minutes. Then, dry it by placing it on a mesh rack or in a salad spinner. While it’s damp, gently stretch it out. Lastly, pin it in place and allow it to dry at its original size.

Can I iron a cashmere sweater?

No, don’t use an iron on a cashmere sweater. Instead, use a steamer because it doesn’t compress the fibers, and it’ll remove wrinkles.

How do I remove pilling?

Clothes are bound to start pilling because it rubs together. If you notice pilling on a cashmere item, use scissors, a razor blade, a sweater comb, or an electric fabric shaver to remove pills.

How do I treat stains on cashmere?

If you spill something on cashmere and it gets stained, don’t worry because you can fix it. Use a stain remover to treat the spot whenever possible. You can also gently massage the area when you wash the item.


Cashmere is luxurious and delicate. Make sure you take care of it properly. Wash it by hand whenever possible and be gentle with it. That’ll ensure it lasts longer.

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Featured image courtesy of Canva.

Portrait of David Em.

About David Em

David Em is the founder of Nola and Luna, the destination for home improvement and decor. He launched Nola and Luna to share DIY how-to’s, inspiration, reviews, shopping guides, and expert advice to help you create a beautiful home.

About Nola & Luna

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