As winter is fast approaching, it’s time to kick out our much-loved wool sweaters from our closets to take us through these cold months! As comfortable and warm as they are, however, let’s face it, it is sometimes a nuisance to wear them because they tend to sting on the skin especially when they are rough and not freshly washed. Therefore, today we take the opportunity to look together at some ingredients to make wool sweaters soft before wearing them this winter!

Baking soda

Let’s start with baking soda, which is known for its many properties including cleaning, degreasing and whitening. Thanks to its mild abrasive action, however, it is also very effective in restoring softness to your sweaters. All you need to do, then, is to pour a quart of cold water into a basin and add, then, 4 tablespoons of baking soda. At this point, soak your woolen garment, leave it overnight and, the next morning, rinse it and let it dry on a horizontal surface so that it does not stretch: your sweater will be so soft that you will want to caress it!

White vinegar

Another very effective ingredient is vinegar, which has a strong softening function. As if that were not enough, then, thanks to its ability to neutralize bad odors, vinegar will also help remove the stench of closed on your sweaters left in the closet during the summer months! Fill, then, a basin with cold water and put, then, the sweater to soak with 1 glass of vinegar. Finally, proceed to wash your sweater as you usually do and let it dry-it will be as good as new!

Citric acid

As an alternative to vinegar, you can also use a more environmentally friendly ingredient: citric acid. All you need to do, then, is to dissolve 1/3 lb. powdered in a quart of water and decant it into a bottle. At this point, pour about half cup of this mixture when you wash your sweater by hand or in the washing machine: the fibers of your garment will immediately be more elastic and softer! We remind you, in fact, that citric acid acts as a natural fabric softener!


After baking soda, vinegar and citric acid, lemon could not be missing from the roll call, which can be an excellent remedy in case of felted wool that itches on the skin! Therefore, pour the juice of three squeezed lemons into a basin with cold water and then soak the garment for 30 minutes. Finally, rinse it off and proceed to drying. Please remember to always lay it horizontally to prevent it from spreading: and what a softness! In addition, you can also use it to bleach a possibly yellowed woolen garment!

N.B We advise you to use lemon only on white sweaters to prevent its bleaching function from discoloring darker ones.

Bar soap.

If there is one product known starting with our grandmothers for its ability to get top-notch laundry, it is bar soap! So, add a tablespoon of bar soap to a basin containing water, after which soak your sweater! Finally, rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue and you’re done! Not only will your sweater be soft, but it will also smell super good!


This may sound too good to be true, yet milk seems to be very effective in softening felted wool. Moreover, like lemon it is also able to bleach laundry and linens. In short: 2 in 1! Fill, then, a basin with milk and dip your garment inside. The amount of milk you will need will depend on the size of the garment and the capacity of the basin. Let, then, the garment soak for at least an hour. After that, proceed to rinse with water and bar soap. Of course, to avoid “waste,” we recommend that you use this remedy only for small garments and in case of expired milk.

DIY conditioner

Finally, here’s one last trick for softening your woolen garments: DIY conditioner! If the conditioner we use for our hair, in fact, has the property of detangling our hair and making it soft, why not create one for rough, felted sweaters? Fill, then, an empty bottle with about 3 cups of room temperature water and add, then, also 2 cups of white wine vinegar. At this point, pour into the resulting mixture also a cup of baking soda, putting it a little at a time.

We recommend that you do not put all the ingredients together but follow this order to avoid any foam that may overflow from the bottle. Finally, all you have to do is add 7-8 drops of a scented essential oil of your choice and your DIY fabric softener conditioner is ready to use! All you need to do is add 3 scoops of fabric softener to a basin filled with water and then soak your sweater overnight. The next day, rinse it, let it drain and let it dry outdoors. If you want to speed up drying without ruining it, try the towel trick!


These are eco-friendly and natural ways to soften your woolen garments. We remind you, however, to always stick to the washing directions so as not to ruin your garments. Also, we recommend that you always proceed with hand washing rather than machine washing when dealing with woolen garments.