How to Wash Nylon Clothes?

women in ripped nylon pantyhose

Nylon has been a favorite choice for decades because of its strength and ultralight features. Nylon repels moisture and dries quickly. Nylon is widely used in creating synthetic clothes such as swimsuits, sportswear, hosiery, and other similar items made with nylon. Nylon also goes into making lightweight jackets, pantyhose, tights, track pants, and umbrellas.

Nylon is sensitive to heat and certain chemicals. Use cool or lukewarm water to prevent damage. Some attention to detail and a gentle touch are required to wash nylon. By following our tried and tested tips, you can effectively clean nylon and keep it looking its best for years.

Cleaning Overview

Working Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Total Time:  7 to 12 Hours

Skills Required: Beginner

Estimated Cost: USD 0 to 35

What Will You Need


  1. Cold or Warm water
  2. Mild detergent
  3. Fabric softener
  4. Enzyme-based stain-removing solution


  1. Large sink or tub
  2. Washing machine
  3. Mesh laundry bag
  4. Dryer sheet

Should You Hand-Wash or Machine-Wash Nylon Clothes?

You can hand-wash or machine-wash nylon clothes. As per studies and our experience, handwashing is preferable. It is because machine washing may eventually ruin the nylon cloths and damage them prematurely. Frequent machine-washing of nylon may develop pill-like materials, resulting in the deterioration of the clothing. Further, they develop into tiny holes that enlarge as the days pass. 

How to Hand-Wash Nylon?

1. Fill the Sink with Cold Water

Hand washing your nylon clothes is the safest method to retain them for a long time. The process starts with filling your sink with regular cold water. Ensure the chain and drain plug don’t have sharp edges. It is to prevent your clothes from hooking onto any object during washing.

filling sink with water

2. Add Mild Detergent

Due to the delicate nature of nylons, we recommend using a mild detergent to wash them. It helps retain the durability of the fibers, ultimately resulting in the long life of your nylon material.

mild liquid detergent to wash clothes

3. Soak

The next step involves soaking your nylon clothes for several minutes. It helps the detergent permeate the clothes effortlessly without any agitation. Turn your clothes inside out. It helps to remove any sweat or oil that might have stuck to them from your body.

soak clothes in soapy water

4. Scrunch

Avoid pulling, stretching, or wringing your nylon clothes. It may result in the clothes losing their shape. To retain the form of the clothes as is, scrunch them and then let the clothes whirl into the water to remove the dirt.

rinse clothes

5. Rinse

Rinse the clothes with cold water. Never use hot water as it may stretch the fibers, deteriorating the shape of your clothing. The cold water helps keep the fabric closely knit. 

Flush out all the soapy water from the sink. Then rinse all the detergent from your nylon clothes by washing them under a tap with cold water. Avoid squeezing or twisting your nylon clothes while rinsing them.

rinse clothes under water

6. Dry

Avoid drying your nylon clothes in the dryer. The heat from the dryer damages the nylon fibers. In addition, there’s another risk of hooking up the nylon fibers onto the door or any other clothing piece. The best way is to lay your nylon clothes flat on a clean surface or hang them in a well-ventilated area till they air-dry.

air dry clothes in garden

How to Machine Wash Nylon?

You can machine wash nylon clothes if time doesn’t permit you to have them hand-washed.

We recommend not mixing nylon clothes with your other laundry load and washing them separately. Handle delicate nylon items with extra care to prevent damage. If the number of nylon items doesn’t suffice to make a full load, you can combine them with other delicate clothing since they also need extra care while washing.

Related: How to shrink nylon?

1. Put Nylon in Mesh Bag

Never put your nylon clothes directly into the washing machine. They might hang up on the agitator, eventually getting damaged. Always put your nylon clothes in a finely woven mesh bag. Alternatively, you can use a pillowcase if a mesh bag isn’t available.

mesh laundry bag

2. Use Gentle Detergent

To preserve the fibers of your nylon clothes, use a gentle detergent. It ensures protection for the fibers and conditions them appropriately. Avoid using fabric softener at this stage, as it weakens the fibers.

liquid detergent in clothes basket

3. Use Gentle Cycle

To repeat, always use cold water while washing nylon clothes. It helps to enhance the longevity of the fabric. Set the washing machine on a gentle cycle whenever you have nylon clothes for washing.

operating automatic washing machine

4. Remove Excess Water

a. Squeeze

Avoid pulling or twisting your nylon clothes. The nylon fibers will stretch, which results in losing the shape of the clothing. You can gently squeeze the washed nylon clothes to remove the extra water without wringing them.

b. Blot the clothes in a towel

Another way to remove the excess water is by wrapping your nylon clothes in a soft towel. The towel helps to dry the nylon clothes by gently absorbing the extra water. These semi-dampened nylon clothes dry quicker as the fabric is delicate and thin.

nylon socks kept on towel to dry

5. Air Dry

The best way is to lay your nylon clothes flat on a clean surface or hang them in a well-ventilated area till they air-dry.

air dry white clothes

Can You Bleach Nylon?

You can bleach nylon with the appropriate bleach and method. You might have to level up the brightness of your nylon item with a dull appearance. However, avoid using chlorine bleach since it may apply a yellowish tint to the fabric and eventually damage it. Bleach your nylon items only with non-chlorine bleach.

Related: How to remove bleach from clothes?

Can You Steam Nylon?

Yes, you can safely steam your nylon clothes. It helps you get the wrinkles out of the fabric.

Issues with Nylon Fabric

Despite nylon fabrics being durable and long-lasting, they are likely to pill and suffer damage if subjected to frequent washing and drying. To enhance the longevity of nylon clothes, they must be hand-washed and air-dried. Avoiding machine-washing of nylon clothes extends their life significantly. In addition, hand-washing nylon clothes isn’t laborious as nylon is easy to wash and dries quickly.

You must have experienced how much clothes adhere to static cling. To overcome this issue, use fabric softener in a small quantity as per the instructions while washing a load of nylon clothing, along with a dryer sheet in the machine dryer. 

Give extra attention to nylon hosiery and lingerie items. These items are delicate, so wash them with extra care. Using a mesh bag helps you take extra care. Remember to set the washing machine on a gentle cycle. Always rinse your nylon clothes with cold water and strictly air-dry them to keep them in good condition for a long time.

Related: Substitute for fabric softener.

  • Can nylon go in the washer and dryer?

    Nylon can go in the washer. For a safer wash, use a mesh bag or pillowcase. It is recommended to air-dry nylon clothes. Nylon dries quickly.

  • Does nylon shrink in the wash?

    Pure nylon is difficult to shrink. However, a blend of other fabrics with nylon may shrink in certain situations.

  • Can 100% nylon be machine washed?

    Yes, 100% nylon can be machine-washed at the lowest temperature and in cold water.


Several wearables use nylon due to its lightweight and durable features. Nylon also repels dirt and stains and is easy to wash. It keeps moisture away and therefore dries quickly. 

Before washing your nylon clothes, it’s necessary to go through the washing instructions. The clothing might have a blend of other fabrics with nylon, so it’s safer to go through the instructions first.

Washing nylon clothes is simple but needs to be done appropriately. Otherwise, there is always a risk of damaging the fabric. Hand washing is preferable to machine washing to extend the life of nylon clothing. 

Avoid wringing or vigorously agitating nylon clothes. Dry them by gently squeezing and air-drying naturally.

Related: How to Wash Synthetic Clothes