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Definition: Pilling


n. Small hard surface balls of fabric, usually found in "wear" areas of a garment. Caused by use of staple yarns and/or loosely woven yarns.

To avoid pilling, hand wash sweaters. For those that are machine washable, turn them inside out before tossing into the washer. Or buy this Brookstone Fabric Shaver, $20.


Join The Conversation
Pets Pets 9 years
I have the Brookstone one. It works well but on thicker sweaters – you have to be very gentle/ careful on lightweight or soft ones (silk blends, cashmere or merino). I also use a pumice that takes out pills remarkably well and, for the delicates, the dry cleaner fixes them nicely.
littleedie littleedie 10 years
Actually it looks like it is a couple layers of window screen-type mesh rather than teeth. It's some sort of coarse mesh, layered over the edge.
sofi sofi 10 years
thanks for that link- is it basically a fancy razor- it kind of appears to have teeth?
littleedie littleedie 10 years
I haaaaaate pilling. I have never tried one of these battery-powered things and I recommend this little comb-type thing instead: D-Fuzz-It Just be careful with it; a friend told me she wore a hole in one of her sweaters with it. I've used it gently on even thin sweaters and no problems so far.
zc zc 10 years
i never knew they had an actual technical term- i read in glamour that you can take a blunt razor and run it over them to get rid of them
potterlove potterlove 10 years
I absoLUTEly hate, hate, hate it when that happens on my best sweaters!!! Makes me peeve, but its nature.
nati nati 10 years
hate it!
The-Italian-Jem The-Italian-Jem 10 years
I bought one from Bed Bath & Beyond, and it works fine. You do have to be cautious about how often you use it over the same area. Mine cost around $8
jessiedallas jessiedallas 10 years
i bought one of those pilling things, but not the one from brookstone, and it was a piece of junk! anyone know if the one from brookstone works well?
nicachica nicachica 10 years
pilling makes a pretty sweater look cheap...ugh, i hate it!
vienvien vienvien 10 years
It really annoys me when I see pilling
SassAndBide SassAndBide 10 years
i hate when that happens
shulvrkrp shulvrkrp 10 years
Pilling is the bane of my existence!!!!! ARRRGGGH!
sofi sofi 10 years
use an old razor on a flat surface. Be careful, though. I've never had a problem but you don't want to put a whole through something to thin
jessica08317 jessica08317 10 years
i need to buy one of those things from brookstone.. i hate pilling...soo annoying
Le-Luxe Le-Luxe 10 years
I hate those things! Arg.
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