Do Bamboo Sheets Shrink?

Written by: The Linenly Team



Time to read 3 min

Bamboo sheets are one of the soundest investments you can make when it comes to getting a good night's sleep. Bamboo sheets are durable, providing luxurious sleep throughout their lifetime (when cared for properly). Taking care of your sheets is imperative – if you’ve just bought new bamboo bedding, you’re likely wondering how to take care of them. Do you wash the sheets like normal? Sort of. Can you put the sheets in the dryer? No, it is not recommended to do so. Do bamboo sheets shrink? Good question.

Follow Linenly's guide below to properly care for your bamboo sheets and understand how to avoid shrinkage where possible.

Will My Bamboo Sheets Shrink?

In short, yes, over time, your bamboo sheets will shrink. Linenly's sheets are designed with slight shrinkage in mind, and as such, our sheets are designed slightly oversized to accommodate for this slight decrease in size. Bamboo fibres are more susceptible to shrinking in a washing and drying cycle compared to traditional cotton sheets when washed incorrectly. With that in mind, there are a few things you can do to avoid shrinking where possible over the long lifetime of your bamboo sheets.

bamboo sheets will last a long time when taken care of properly

How To Avoid Shrinking Bamboo Sheets

Bamboo fabric will easily shrink if you are not careful. Some report their bamboo fabrics shrinking up to as much as 6%! Here are a few tips for caring for your bamboo sheets to avoid their size-changing:

1. Wash Cold

When washing your bamboo sheets, follow the manufacturer's directions about the temperature you should clean them. In general, 30 degrees is the ideal temperature or lower to wash your sheets in.

2. Avoid Fabric Softeners and Bleach

Bamboo sheets are already incredibly soft, and they don't need any chemical help! Fabric softeners and bleach can damage the integrity of the fibres and cause shrinkage and other distortions in the fabric.

3. Wash Gentle

Once your sheets are in the wash, make sure to wash them on a gentle cycle. Gentle cycles help bamboo sheets retain their natural comforting properties. All-natural fabrics benefit from a gentle cycle, as a heavier one will damage the softness, moisture-wicking ability, and overall size of the sheets.

4. Don't Dry on High Heat

In general, it is better to line-dry your sheets. Doing this provides the best chance to preserve the fibres, colours, and texture of the sheets. If you must dry them, ensure you use a low heat or airing setting and a low tumble cycle. Once the sheets have finished drying in the cycle, remove them immediately to avoid wrinkles and any further shrinkage. Not only can your sheets shrink in high heat, but they are also at an increased risk of tearing.

5. Wash Your Sheets Separately

Not all fabrics are created equal. Your bamboo sheets, and sheets in general for that matter, should always be washed separately from other garments and clothes. Washing your sheets with other everyday items causes friction and will impact the durability and integrity of the sheets.

6. Store Your Sheets Correctly

Sheet storage is not often the first thought when it comes to avoiding finding out the answer to “do bamboo sheets shrink?”. However, when it comes to storage, you must keep your sheets away from sunlight and anywhere damp to prevent damaging the soft fibres that can lead to bamboo sheets shrinking. As a natural fibre, bamboo is much more susceptible to the factors of heat and moisture compared to synthetic fibres. 

general care instructions for your bamboo sheets

Why Do Bamboo Sheets Shrink?

Bamboo sheets will shrink due to a combination of excess moisture, heat, and mechanical action. These factors combined cause the bamboo fibres to release any pulling or tension that was applied to the weave when the sheets were produced. When this occurs, the fibres retract completely, causing shrinkage. This type of shrinkage typically occurs at its most severe during the first wash, which is why sheets are often made slightly oversized to accommodate for this.

Do Bamboo Sheets Shrink in the Dryer?

As previously mentioned, to keep your bamboo sheets looking and feeling silky smooth, it is best to avoid putting them in the dryer after washing them. The dryer is more likely to shrink your sheets due to the heat it produces. Not only this, but the dryer is also likely to leave your sheets wrinkled after they're done. Line dried sheets have an unrivalled crispness, and when dried via a fresh breeze, they will smell wonderful.

Wrapping Up

So, do bamboo sheets shrink?

Whilst a little bit of shrinking in your bamboo sheets is unavoidable; there are several steps you can take to ensure your soft and comfortable bamboo sheets stay that way. All Linenly bamboo products come with a detailed care guide to follow that will help extend the life of your sheets. If you want your bamboo fitted sheet to feel a bit tighter, you can dry it in the dryer whilst line drying your other bedding.