How to Make Acrylic Yarn Softer: Eco-Friendly Tips for Crafters

Due to its color variety and durability, acrylic yarn is a popular choice for many crafters. Many of us have a stash of acrylic yarn that’s scratchy. Surely you know what I mean. Thank goodness there are several ways to soften your acrylic yarn, while improving the feel and without compromising on sustainability. In this blog, I will explain why you should soften your acrylic yarn before knitting and how to get the soft acrylic yarn you want.


Different Methods to Soften Acrylic Yarn

Washing with Eco-Friendly Fabric Softener:

Once you’ve completed your project, use an eco-friendly softener to wash it. This method of washing will help the fibers relax and be soft.


Eco-Friendly Tip: Using a softener that is free from harsh chemicals and biodegradable ensures it’s not only gentle with your yarn but also with the environment.



  1. Use the correct amount by checking the fabric softener bottle 
  2. Use the washing machine on cold water gently cycle, and add the amount of fabric softener that’s recommended on the bottle


Using Hair Conditioner:

Besides softening and detangling hair, hair conditioners can also do the same with acrylic fibers. 


Eco-Friendly Tip: Opt for silicone-free, eco-friendly hair conditioner.


  1. Fill the basin with room-temperature water
  2. Add a large portion of hair conditioner
  3. For 30 minutes, immerse your finished yarn art in the mixture
  4. Rinse with cold water
  5. Squeeze out any excess water gently
  6. Gently squeeze out any excess water
  7. Lay it out on a towel to dry


Vinegar Rinse:

Vinegar is a natural fabric softener that can help to break down the chemicals in acrylic yarn, making it more soft. 



  1. Wash yarn art
  2. Pour a cup of distilled white vinegar into a rinse cycle
  3. Once dry, the yarn will be soft without leaving a smell due to the acidity of the vinegar


Steam Blocking:

The fastest way to soften acrylic yarn is by steam blocking. To soften the acrylic yarn fibers, an iron is used. It is recommended to block items you want to retain the shape of, such as sweaters or gloves. For more simple items, you can place them in the dryer on low heat for 40 minutes.



  1. On the blocking board, pin your yarn project
  2. With a steam iron, gently steam project a few inches above on low to medium until damp
  3. To prevent melting, avoid letting the iron touch the yarn
  4. Let it air dry completely


Storing Acrylic Yarn:

Storing acrylic yarn properly is essential to maintaining quality and preventing discoloration and damage.



  • Store yarn away from direct sunlight and moisture in a dry, cool place
  • To prevent dust and insects, store yarn in a container or plastic bag that is airtight
  • Storing yarn under heavy objects or cramped spaces can cause deformation or stretching


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Make your acrylic yarn more fun to work with while enhancing its usability and feel. These sustainable methods ensure you have a soft texture, but are also kind to the Earth.


For additional information on sustainable crafting, visit our blog often and visit our website to check out our range of environmentally friendly crafting supplies.


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