Things You Should Never Put in Your Dryer

There are a lot of things that we love about modern times—TikTok, Netflix, and Hallmark Christmas movies, for starters. But while we are out here living our best technology-assisted lives, occasionally it is worth remembering that some modern conveniences aren't always better than old-fashioned options. For proof of that, you don't need to look much farther than the laundry room. While washers and dryers are some of the greatest inventions ever, they aren't always the best choice. Certain fabrics, materials, and items are best cleaned the old fashioned way. There are plenty of things not to put in the washer (looking at you, sequins), but there are also plenty of items that should never be put in the dryer. Instead, they should be laid flat on a drying rack or hung out on a line just like Grandma used to do.

Here are a few things you should never put in the dryer:


While it may be tempting to toss your favorite one-piece or bikini in the dryer when they are damp and you need to get to the pool or the beach, resist the urge. The heat and spinning of a dryer can ruin a swimsuit faster than you can say Marco Polo. To avoid a stretched out, droopy suit, hang them up to dry.

Baseball Hats

While those lucky baseball caps may ensure a favorite team wins (who are we to argue with superstition?), they do need a wash every so often. Spot clean with sudsy water and then air dry, because the heat from a dryer can cause them to lose their shape.


There's no doubt that underwear, bras, and lingerie can get dirty, but they are not the easiest things to clean. They generally need to be hand-washed or at least put in a lingerie bag and run through the delicate cycle. They also should be hung dry as heat can ruin the elastic, spandex, Lycra, lace, and pretty much everything else that goes into underthings.

Athletic Shoes

While those well-used running shoes can (and should) go in the washer, it's best to skip the dryer. The heat can cause shoes to warp, lose their shape, or worst of all, fall apart. Instead let them air dry near a heater or in direct sunlight.


This intricate fabric is beautiful and delicate, so hand-washing is key. To help lace keep its shape, keep it away from the dryer as the intense heat can weaken the delicate threads and the constant motion can cause snags or tears. Instead, remove excess water by gently wrapping in a towel and then hanging dry in a bathroom or on a clothes line.

Leather and Suede

These luxe fabrics should rarely go in the washer or the dryer as water can stain them and heat can dry them out and cause them to crack. Instead, take them to a dry cleaner.


This leather alternative should never go in the dryer as the heat can cause the fabric to warp and pucker, taking it from stylish to unwearable.


To keep your velvet looking and feeling its best, skip the dryer, which can destroy the fabric's soft nap. Instead, simply lay flat on a drying rack or table and let it air dry and steam to get wrinkles out.


This delicate fabric can be washed on a gentle cycle, but it should never be dried in a machine. Instead, gently remove excess moisture by carefully wrapping in a towel, folding, and soaking up water. Then hang away from the sun (the bathroom works!) to dry without risk of fading.


Saggy tights are not usually a look anyone is going for when they get dressed in the morning. To avoid stretched out tights, keep them away from the dryer. The elastic in tights can be warped and loosened by the heat, causing tights to lose their shape.

Bath Rugs

Go ahead and wash your bath rug on gentle cycle, but if it has a rubber or other slip-proof backing, don't put it in the dryer. The heat can cause the rubber to melt, which can damage not only the rug but potentially the dryer, too.

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