Wash bamboo fabrics in a cold-water gentle cycle and lay them flat on a towel or hang them to dry. If the bamboo fabric is wrinkled after drying, adjust the iron for steam and a low-to-medium heat setting after checking the care tag for detailed instructions.
Washing Bamboo Fabric
Bamboo fabric behaves much like other naturally sourced fibers, such as cotton or wool, in that it will shrink if exposed to high heats. Wash bamboo fabrics in cold water on a gentle to medium cycle with other like-colored items. Bamboo fabrics lose some strength when wet, so if you have items with hooks or eyelets that may catch, place these items in a lingerie bag to wash.
Use regular laundry detergent for bamboo fabrics, but do not use any chlorine bleach, as the bleach weakens the bamboo fibers and can cause yellowing. Bamboo fibers are naturally soft, so do not use fabric softener or dryer sheets. Do not dry clean bamboo fabrics.
Check the care tag to verify whether the bamboo item has been preshrunk. When it has not, expect it to shrink up to 5 percent when washed and dried, regardless of water or dryer temperature. Some bedsheets for example, requires you to use warm water on the first cycle.
Read the care labels of items before laundering, as each item that contains bamboo can have different care instructions depending on the composition of other fibers added to the fabric.
Drying Bamboo Fabric
Items made of bamboo fabric should be dried as gently as possible to reduce shrinkage and stretching. Place the wet garment on top of a clean, dry towel laid flat on a bed, for example, ensuring the item lays flat without wrinkles or stretching. Allow the garment to remain in this neutral position until completely dry. If you choose to line dry, double up the garment on the line so that it does not stretch and warp its shape. If you must tumble dry your item, use a low to medium heat or fluff setting and remove the item from the dryer when slightly damp.
Storing Bamboo Fabric
Natural Anti-Bacterial Properties
With bamboo's natural anti-bacterial properties, you don't need to worry about hot-water washes to sanitize clothing or bedding. When you first remove bamboo sheets from the washer, for example, the fabric can feel stiff like canvas, but once you dry them, they regain their natural softness. Do not be surprised if you find extra lint after washing, as bamboo fabrics release the short fibers during the first few washings.