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  • More about shrinkage and BR Luxury Touch polos

    The alleged shrinkage on the Banana Republic Luxury-Touch polos is well known--just check out the reviews and you'll see that almost all of the negative reviewers talk about it. I've mentioned my own experience here before: https://threads.dappered.com/showthr...Sweat-It-polos.

    Despite past experience, I bought several slim fit Luxury-Touch polos during the recent labor day sale, because I really like them, and the medium tall is a great fit for me. And since people like Joe (and the overwhelming majority of the reviewers) don't seem to have any issues with shrinking, I wondered if maybe I (and all the other negative reviewers) had simply bought shirts from bad batches.

    Anyway, I wore two of the new shirts for the first time last week, and I washed them both this weekend--cold water, hang (completely) dry, and a brief, dry tumble on low heat afterward to shake out the wrinkles. And of course, they each shrunk up about an inch, as well as noticeably in throughout the body. At this point, I don't mind, because they fit me a bit better, but it does not bode well for the long term--if they do it again, they'll be unwearable for me.

    Just thought I'd put this out there. There's definitely something going on with that fabric. I wish I knew what magic other people are working to keep theirs from shrinking.

    (By comparison, I have two Don't Sweat It polos, which in standard sizing are almost indistinguishable from the tall slim Luxury Touch shirts, other than being a touch boxier through the midsection. These have been through a few wash cycles, as well as the dryer [low heat], with no noticeable shrinkage.)

  • #2
    I'd just point out that if you tumble dry cotton, it will shrink. If it's already dry, the effect is stronger. For shirts like this, I iron wet and hang dry to eliminate wrinkles. If there are still some wrinkles, I use a steamer.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by ianr View Post
      I'd just point out that if you tumble dry cotton, it will shrink. If it's already dry, the effect is stronger. For shirts like this, I iron wet and hang dry to eliminate wrinkles. If there are still some wrinkles, I use a steamer.
      Interesting. I did not realize that putting dry clothes in the dryer would cause them to shrink. Of course, if I have to iron my polos I don't want to wear them

      Follow up question--what is it that causes the shrinking if not the drying under heat? Will cotton shirts shrink if you spend a lot of time outside somewhere hot (like Phoenix)?

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      • #4
        I think that tumbling is another contributor. I'd bet that if you just tumbled with no heat you'd still see shrinkage. Even low heat setting on dryer could be around 120F, hopefully it's not that hot in Phoenix. I certainly wouldn't want to spend any time outside in that kind of temperature.

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        • #5
          Agitation is the main cause.

          As far as drying dry clothes, the effect here is because fibers have a baseline water content. That is, even "dry," cotton holds a certain amount of water. If you then remove this natural quantity of water, the agitation-driven shrinking process goes full speed.

          Heat from wearing and ironing doesn't shrink clothes as there isn't the kind of agitation in a washer/dryer cycle. If you wash on delicate and then apply heat from an iron, no significant shrinking should occur as the fibers are being jostled closer together, they are still stretched out.

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          • #6
            Sorry I mean "are not" moving closer together. Tumbling makes fibers tense up and align themselves closer together, thus "shrinking."

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            • #7
              I appear to be the only person this hasn't happened to. /shrug

              Sorry to hear it did of course, but i'm now perplexed as I've not experienced the issue myself.
              https://www.professorhorseyhead.com

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              • #8
                I have some of these and haven't experienced any shrinking. I just wash them in cold water with Woolite Dark and air dry them. The medium slim fit polos fit me better than anything else I've found.

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                • #9
                  I got one a few years ago and the length shrunk enough that it's borderline too short to wear.

                  I think you're lucky it shrunk into a better fit on you, now I'd just be very careful with them and wash on cold then maybe steam out wrinkles if necessary after hang drying.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by armedferret View Post
                    I appear to be the only person this hasn't happened to. /shrug

                    Sorry to hear it did of course, but i'm now perplexed as I've not experienced the issue myself.
                    Yeah, I'm perplexed, too. It seems like most people have your experience. And yet, there's a non-trivial number of people like me who find that these things are the shrinkiest shirts ever made. Very strange.

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                    • #11
                      Stay away from “Luxury Touch” from BR or “Dress” style from BR Factory

                      So I’ve purchased three items that I can consider total losses at this point... I was researching online to see if anybody had the same issue with the shrinkage in these Banana Republic “Luxury Touch” polo shirts after the fact I’ve wasted money on these things and they pretty much fit my 6’1” 200lb frame like as if I purchased a size XS-S from a size Large (standard fit). I came across this thread and had to chime in with my experience.

                      I’ve gone through 2 of these polo shirts and now a 100% rayon “Soft Camp shirt”. Be advised that if the material has a “silk” like touch, is labeled “Luxury Touch” or “Dress” style (BR Factory) chances are it’s going to undergo extreme shrinkage.

                      The first polo shirt, I dry cleaned it after the first wear/use because I wanted to take good care of it and it still shrunk! I then purchased a SECOND Luxe Touch polo thinking it was the dry cleaning process that screwed the cotton’s composition. Lo and behold, after washing on a delicate cycle, cold, with like colors inside out, air dried on a flat surface indoors, and with Woolite it still shrunk approximately 2.75” from the hem up and from the width. I’m not even going to touch on the whole Soft Camp shirt experience because it’s just incredibly disappointing. I just wrote to BR customer service requesting that something be taken up to their upper management about this issue. Mind you, I have 2 of the “Don't Sweat It” polos and those haven’t undergone any shrinkage all the while using the same washing and drying methods so that just proved to me that it’s the cotton’s composition in the Luxe and Dress lineups.
                      Last edited by phonix56; July 6, 2019, 04:12 PM. Reason: Odd punctuation marks

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                      • #12
                        Aside from the issue of some people using dryers, perhaps water quality is a factor.

                        I've not had any shrinkage issues. My area relies on rainwater so it's almost perfectly soft (automotive stores have never carried distilled water for mixing coolant). That means we can use less soap (I use a quarter of the recommended amount at most), cold water is still an effective solvent, and everything rinses out.

                        I wonder if soap residue and mineral deposits left by harder water affect shrinkage as the material dries, even at room temperature.

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                        • #13
                          I recently purchased one, a bit skeptical due to threads like this. I'm 6' and am generally somewhere between perfect L and debating between L and M in BR sizing. After 2 washes it fits pretty spot on. I wish I'd paid more attention when I first got it although I remember it feeling a bit on the Large size, particularly in length but I unfortunately didn't do a very scientific comparison. I didn't do anything special in the wash, just threw it in with my other stuff.

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                          • #14
                            I have two - the navy one shrunk over the season to be unwearable. The black one is just fine. Both washed in cold and dried in the dryer....

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                            • #15
                              I have a luxury touch henley and a luxury touch polo. I've had the henley for about a year and probably washed it about a dozen times with no noticeable shrinkage. I've had the polo for about a month and washed it three times with no noticeable shrinkage.

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