Wool does not have to shrink- sheep do not shrink or harden in the rain! Shrinkage, felting and skin hardening are due to hot water, agitation, the use of inappropriate detergents or tanning that does not allow washing. For Woolskin to be effective, the sheepskin must have been chrome tanned so that washing is possible.
Hot water, agitation and poor detergents cause the wool fibres to shorten and lock tightly together; causing shrinkage and felting.
You can effecively wash sheepskin and woollen products by using the following procedures.
Best Procedure for Sheepskin Washing & Drying:
1. Make sure sheepskin is washable. Use cold or lukewarm water.
3. Wash-machine wash using gentle/wool cycle.
4. Dry- Spin dry slowly, then lay flat with leather side up- away from direct heat or sun./
1. Use COLD or lukewarm water- NEVER HOT
(There is one exception: you can safely use hot water for HiTemp UR Medical Sheepskins. These superior sheepskins can withstand more than 200 hot water wash and dry cycles while retaining their softness and pressure relieving properties. HiTemp UR Medical Sheepskins are thermally disinfected when washed at 80C or 175F)
The use of excessively hot water:
2. USE A SHEEPSKIN DETERGENT: WOOLSKIN
Wool detergents eg Woolite, are not recommended for the washing of sheepskins as they may contain chelating agents, phosphates, alkali, bleach, peroxide, triethanolamine, sequestering agents, phosphoric acid or enzymes. All are harmful to leather and should not be used.
We recommend : Woolskin: Sheepskin Shampoo & Conditioner
This is the only product that has been developed by the tanning industry specifically for the washing of sheepkins and sheepskin products. It will keep the leather soft and supple while maintaining the luxurious hand of the wool.
"Woolskin with Tea Tree Oil", a new generation product developed in conjunction with the tanning industry, will lubricate the sheepskin leather and give a distinct lustre and handle to the wool. The anti-bacterial in Woolskin remains in the washed article, providing continued action and prevention of odours. Woolskin kills mites ( the cause of house dust asthma) and washing with woolskin will also remove mite allergens.
3. WASHING SHEEPSKIN RUGS, UGG BOOTS & SHEEPSKIN SLIPPERS
20mLfor a small load
40mL for a full load. Use half of these quantities for Front Load machines. Select cold or warm wash. DOUBLE RINSE
Washing instructions for HiTemp Medical Sheepskins to meet thermal disinfection requirements.
The recommended detergent for institutional thermal and chemical disinfection is Woolskin. Acetic acid can be added to steps 1,5, & 9 to aid dye fastness ( pH controlled to 3.8 - 4.2)
4. DRYING SHEEPSKIN AND WOOL
Wool should be dried in the same way that you dry your own hair. Excess heat will damage wool. Place the wool item in the dryer ( no heat ) until nearly dry. Use the "fluff or gentle cycle" only. Remove from the dryer and place the sheepskin( leather side facing upwards ) or wool article on a flat surface or drying rack. Dry in the shade, away from direct sunlight or heat.
Do Not use direct Heat or direct Sunlight to dry washable sheepskin.
Air dry sheepskins with the leather facing upwards.
All prices are in USD