It seems these days that everyone is moving at warp speed. It only seems natural that we are attracted to things that save us time and make our lives easier. We go through drive-thrus to save the time of getting in and out of the car. We choose texting over calling because it’s quicker than having an actual conversation with someone. We can even do all of our grocery shopping online, and even have it delivered right to our front door. All of those things make our lives so much easier; but easier isn’t always better. The latest time saving trend in the clothing world is No-Iron Shirts. Sounds great. I mean who likes to iron? It can’t get any better than just washing, drying, and wearing your shirt instantly. Can it?
No-Iron shirts have a shorter lifespan than normal business shirts; about 20-25% shorter. The reason behind the reduced lifespan is the formaldehyde resin finish. The formaldehyde stiffens the yarns in the shirt which helps the fabric not to wrinkle. However, as the shirt is worn and washed the yarns eventually bend and flex, causing them to weaken. The shirt will weaken to the point where it can no longer hold up during the cleaning process. The main cause of material break down is that the resin finish has been known to trap residual chlorinated bleaching agents and acids that are used on the fabric during the dying process. The hot water used during a wash and the heat used in ironing – even a No-Iron short will still need touch ups – accelerates the effects of the trapped residual chemicals. Random holes or rips can appear after only a few cleanings, leaving the consumers scratching their heads as to what happened to their new, favorite shirt.
No-Iron shirts may seem like a time saver, but not when you need to replace your shirts every month.