Can You Wash Velcro? Here's How to Do It Properly

Using a toothbrush to remove debris from VELCRO

The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 10 - 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 - 2 hrs
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $5 to 10

Nearly every household has a pair of shoes, piece of clothing, or household accessory that can be opened and closed with VELCRO or another brand of hook-and-loop fasteners. VELCRO uses nylon fibers to create a two-piece fastener with one rough, scratchy side featuring hooks and one soft, fuzzy side with loops that when closed together create a strong bond but one that can be pulled apart.

The good news is that VELCRO is washable if it is attached to a fabric that is also washable. Learn how to wash VELCRO properly and how to clean VELCRO so that the bond stays secure.

 Detergent  Regular laundry detergent or as recommended on the care label of the fabric
 Water Temperature  Cool or as recommended on the care label of the fabric
 Cycle Type  Normal or as recommended on the care label of the fabric
 Drying Cycle Type  Permanent press or as recommended on the care label of the fabric
 Special Treatments  Always close the VELCRO before washing
 Iron Settings  Very low heat if ironing is needed

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • 1 Washer or large sink
  • 1 Dryer, clothesline, or drying rack
  • 1 Tweezers
  • 1 Toothbrush
  • 1 Fine-toothed comb
  • 1 Small bowl
  • 1 Microfiber cloth


  • 1 container Laundry detergent
  • 1 container Enzyme-based stain remover
  • 1 container Oxygen bleach
  • 1 roll Packing tape
  • 1 Sticky lint roller
  • 1 container Anti-static spray


Materials for cleaning VELCRO

The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

How to Wash VELCRO

  1. Read the Item's Care Label

    While VELCRO can be washed, it is more important to follow the care label recommendations for the item to which the VELCRO is attached. If the item's tag says "Dry Clean Only" you can remove debris from the VELCRO surfaces but the VELCRO should not be washed.

    Reading the care label for VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  2. Close the VELCRO and Wash as Recommended

    The most important tip when washing VELCRO is to close each fastener before hand-washing or tossing the item in the washer. This will prevent accidental snagging of the fabric and reduce the amount of lint that becomes trapped in the VELCRO.

    Closeup of someone closing VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  3. Dry the VELCRO

    After washing, check the VELCRO and make sure it is still closed especially if using an automatic tumble dryer. Follow the drying guidelines for the item. If air-drying the item, open the fasteners for quicker drying.

    Placing shoes on the window sill to dry

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

How to Remove Lint From VELCRO

Removing lint, strings, and debris will help keep the VELCRO fasteners closing securely and make them look neater.

  1. Use a Toothbrush or a Fine-toothed Comb

    Use a stiff-bristled toothbrush or a fine-toothed comb to lift out the lint and debris. Working on a flat surface, use short, swift strokes from one end of the fastener to the other lifting away loose debris with your fingers. Be sure to clean both the hook and loop sides of the VELCRO.

    Removing lint from VELCRO with a toothbrush

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  2. Use Tweezers

    Use a pair of flat or angled-tipped tweezers and work from one end to the other to remove lint. Tweeze both surfaces of the fastener.

    Using tweezers to remove VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  3. Use Packing Tape

    Wrap a piece of sticky packing or duct tape around your hand to remove debris from VELCRO. Keep moving to a clean area of the tape as lint is transferred. Take advantage of the saw-toothed cutting edge to scrape out lint. Turn the dispenser so that you can use the edge in short, swift strokes to lift out the debris. Grab the loosened lint with your fingers or a bit of sticky tape.

    Using packing tape to remove lint from VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  4. Use a Lint Roller

    A strong lint roller will remove debris. Lay the VELCRO fastener on a flat surface and work from one end to the next. Be sure to roll over both sides several times changing the lint roller surface as needed.


    If you're in a hurry and the scratchy side of the fastener is filled with lint and won't stick, rub it with another hooked (scratchy) piece to loosen the debris. Give it a thorough cleaning later.

    Using a lint roller to remove VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic


Do not iron VELCRO unless the fastener is closed. Use a pressing cloth to protect the VELCRO iron at a very low temperature to prevent melting.


The VELCRO should be closed on the item before it is stored following the recommendations for the fabric.


If the stitching that holds the VELCRO onto the fabric has come loose, it can be restitched by machine or hand. If the VELCRO is on a shoe, repair by a cobbler is recommended.

Treating Stains on VELCRO

  1. Remove Debris

    Before attempting to remove stains from VELCRO fasteners, always remove the debris from both sides of the fastener.

    Using a toothbrush to remove lint from VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  2. Mix a Cleaning Solution and Scrub

    In a small bowl, combine one cup of very warm water and a few drops of laundry detergent or enzyme-based stain remover. Dip a stiff-bristled toothbrush into the cleaning solution and carefully scrub both sides of the hook and loop fastener.

    Using a bristled brush to clean VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  3. Rinse and Wash as Usual

    Dip a microfiber cloth (lint-free) in fresh water and wring until slightly damp. Rinse the fasteners by wiping them with the damp cloth. Close the fastener and wash the item as usual, if needed.

    Using a cloth to dry the VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

  4. Whiten Dingy VELCRO

    If white fasteners are looking dingy, mix a solution of oxygen-based bleach and warm water following the guidelines on the product package. Submerge the entire garment and allow it to soak for at least eight hours. The oxygen bleach will not harm washable fabrics or the nylon-fiber fasteners (do not use for wool, silk, or leather items).

    Using an oxygen bleach solution to whiten VELCRO

    The Spruce / Sanja Kostic

Tips for Washing VELCRO

  • Always close the fasteners completely when not in use to prevent them from collecting debris.
  • Close the VELCRO before tossing the item into the laundry hamper or the washer to prevent unwanted snags and lint.
  • Spray clean fasteners with a bit of anti-static spray to help repel lint.
  • Clean unwanted lint and debris from VELCRO at least monthly.