How to Wash a Wool Blanket

4 min read

The basotho blanket on a beach with a small toddle on it

How to Wash a Wool Blanket

Messy little hands happen so one of the most common questions we get is “how do I clean my wool blanket?” We know wool can seem like a high-maintenance fabric, but we are here to set the record straight - wool is incredibly easy to care for and only takes a little bit of extra effort to wash. In our opinion, nothing beats snuggling up to a wool blanket in the wintertime, so it’s worth the added effort to keep your Thula Tula blankets and throws feeling soft and smelling fresh. And yes, you can even wash our blankets in your washing machine (but please hang dry them)! Read on for our best tips and tricks for keeping your woolen blankets looking as beautiful as the day you bought them. 

Not only do wool blankets provide extra warmth thanks to their thick fibers, but Thula Tula blankets are heirloom quality, meaning they’ll last a lifetime as long as you treat them right. 

Shop woolen blankets by Thula Tula 

Thick woolen Basotho blankets by Thula Tula

Here are 4 tips for washing and caring for your wool blankets:

  1. Shake it Out
  2. Spot Clean
  3. Machine Wash
  4. Dry Clean
  1. Shake & Hang In A Well Ventilated Area

    Before washing, often ventilating wool is enough to refresh your blanket or throw. Wool is an amazing fiber that is naturally water repellent, stain-resistant, and breathable, which means it doesn’t need to be washed as frequently as other fibers. The first and easiest step to washing your blanket is not to wash it, but to let nature do the work! Take your blanket outside (inside is okay too, as long as it’s in a well-ventilated area), shake it like you would a rug, then hang it up and let it air out. Fresh air will do wonders for your blanket or throw (but try to avoid direct sunlight, as it may shrink your blanket). 

    Pro Tip: We recommend washing your wool blanket only when necessary. Limiting the amount of washing will prolong the life of your blanket. 

  2. Spot Clean

    If shaking and hanging your wool blanket didn’t work, then the next step is to spot clean any areas of the blanket that may be stained. 

    Remember to blot the stain as soon as possible, spritz your blanket instead of soaking it, and don’t ever use heat or hot water on wool. Hot water will cause the fiber to expand, and dry heat will cause the fibers to shrink, so the dryer is never a good idea. 

    When spot-cleaning, use vinegar diluted with water, Woolite or wool soap, and some people even swear by dial dish soap, but no matter which soap you choose - make sure to use it sparingly. 

    The next step is easy; wet the stained spot, then gently work the soap into the stain. Be sure to remove all soap on the blanket once the stain is removed. 

    Pro Tip: Wool is hydrophobic, meaning the exterior of the fiber repels water and dirt. Wool contains an outer protective layer called lanolin, which acts as a protectant. Lanolin is what shields the sheep from rain and winter weather and is why wool is generally considered to be self-cleaning. 

  3. Machine Wash Only If Necessary

    Sometimes a blanket needs a real wash, especially if you have pets or kids who thoroughly love your wool blankets. No worries, we have you covered there too. 

    Our first suggestion is to try to hand wash it. Just fill up a sink with lukewarm water and a bit of wool soap (Woolite works great). You don’t need to do much else other than to let your blanket soak for at least 10 minutes. Next, give your wool blanket a gentle swirl. Avoid rubbing the fabric together, like you might do when you hand wash other fabrics. Friction is a no-no with wool. Remove the wool and rinse with clean water. 

    Okay, we hear you, you are thinking “but I don’t have time to hand wash anything!” I’m a mom of 4 kids, so I get it, laundry is never-ending in our house. The good news is I’ve successfully machine washed my Thula Tula Wool Blankets several times with zero issues. Here’s what I did:

    I used the Delicates/Hand-Wash cycle on my washing machine, then selected cold water and the no-spin option. Some machines may have a Wool Cycle, which is what I’d recommend if you have that choice. 

    Then I shook it out and hung it up to dry. Easy peezy! 

    Pro Tip:Drying is where you need to take the most care with your blanket. Don’t ever use the dryer. We suggest rolling your blanket inside a towel to dry instead of ringing it out over the sink. Rolling it will preserve the shape of your wool blanket. You can hang it up or lay it flat to dry after you’ve removed most of the moisture.

  4. Dry Cleaning you wool blanket 

    Last, but not least. If you have a large stain or are feeling nervous about trying to wash your blanket at home, we recommend taking it to a dry cleaner. The safest way to wash any wool blanket is to have it dry cleaned.

Bonus Pro Tip:There are a few things you can do to clean your blanket without actually washing your wool. Worried about dust? Brushing your wool blanket can help. Simply lay your blanket flat and brush the fibers in the same direction using a wool brush similar to this: on Amazon

This will soften the wool and loosen up any dirt or pet hair caught up in the wool. Once you’re finished, you can air out the blanket or fluff it up by shaking it outside. 

We hope that these tips will help you enjoy many years snuggling up in your Thula Tula Wool Blankets and Throws. 

Steve Watts
Steve Watts

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