How To Stretch Spandex: Simple DIY Tricks

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Imagine a world where spandex does not exist and you got to workout wearing normal clothes that aren’t stretchy! Imagining it even scares us, doesn’t it?

Equally unimaginable would be a world wear elastane did not exist. So, from all this imagination, we can all decipher how spandex and elastane are nothing less than blessings in our lives.

“If Your Spandex Clothes Got Very Tight And You Are Wondering How To Stretch Spandex, Then You Are On The Right Page. Here We Will Describe 4 Simple Ways To Stretch Spandex At Your Home. “

How To Stretch Spandex

What is Spandex? 

Spandex is a kind of fabric which provides stretch and elasticity to our clothes. The term “spandex” is not a brand name, and the name used to refer to polyether-polyurea copolymer fabrics that comes after certain production process. The terms spandex, Lycra, and elastane manes the same stretchable fabric that you know of. 

This fabric can stretch to 5-8 times its normal size, and it is commonly used in better fitting clothes. Most clothes though have a small quantity of spandex mixed with other fabrics. 

What is the Need to Stretch Spandex?

We all love spandex clothes. However, sometimes they can be really snug and hugging on to our skin which makes them really uncomfortable to wear. So, if there is a way to make it stretch it a bit, you will be comfortable again in the same clothes and there will be no need to change them. 

And so we have brought to you a few methods which will help you to stretch or relax the spandex material permanently making it wearable and comfortable.

With the help of these methods you can stretch spandex as per your requirements and you can do this all by yourself!

So go ahead and try your hands on one of these and get those body hugging tights relaxed to a comfortable size!

3 DIY Simple Ways to Stretch Spandex a Little or a Lot 

Simple Ways to Stretch Spandex a Little

1. How To Stretch Spandex a Little Bit: Soak it in Hot Water and Wear it Wet (Strange! but works like Magic :))

This is one of the easiest, quickest and the simplest way to relax spandex material and this one can easily be done at home. This is a method where you relax the spandex fabric by soaking it in hot water.

How to Do it?

To stretch the spandex fabric, all you need to do is soak it in hot water for 30 minutes. This will help relax the fabric fibres. You can either wash it in your washing machine on the hottest setting or simply soak it in a tub of hottest tap water which is usually around 120-140degrees Fahrenheit.

The next step might sound a bit uncomfortable, but if you really want to stretch out that tight spandex material then you’ve got to do this! Put on the garment while it’s still wet. The moisture and the heat from your body will help the spandex to relax.

The next step is to stay active for the next couple of hours wearing that wet garment. This will allow it to air-dry on your body which will help the spandex to relax.

The more you move around, the more stretch will you achieve. 

Try to move around in different poses and postures so that the material stretches equivalently on all sides. The amount of time required for the material to dry up depends completely on the thickness of the fabric.

This method is however best if you want it to stretch a little. If you want greater expansion then try out our other methods.

2. When You Want to Stretch Spandex Significantly: Wet it in Hot Water and Use Weights to Stretch 

This is slightly a more complicated way to stretch and relax spandex material. This method involves weights which easily help you to stretch out those elastic clothing.

For this method first you need to do is soak the garment in hot water. You can do this by running it in your washing machine on the highest settings. Or, you can just soak it in a tub of hot water.

Make sure that you have heated the water with water heater as water heaters provide you with the optimum range of heat required for this purpose (120-140 degrees Fahrenheit).

Once the garment has received the proper soaking, place it evenly on a flat and hard surface. Once you have laid it evenly on a flat ground, secure 3-5lb of weight on one side of the garment.

You can use the weight of anything but make sure that the weight is heavy enough to hold the fabric when you stretch it from the other side. The weight mentioned above usually works for this particular purpose.

However, you need to make sure too that the things that you’ve used to make the weights do not transfer color onto the garment or does not get damaged because of the wet garment.

After this, all you have to do is stretch out the garment from the free side and then secure that side with weights too. Now you must be wondering how does this work? Well, the continuous tension of the fibers of the spandex helps it to stretch out and relax permanently.

Make sure that you stretch it enough or more since spandex is a kind of fabric which is made to retain its original shape. So, in order to stretch a considerable amount goes a little beyond and that will suffice the need.

For this method too, the stretching requires air-dry. So, allow the garment to dry completely while its stretched out or else the spandex fibres will shorten and tend retain its original shape as per the characteristic feature of the fabric. Again, the time required for it to dry, entirely depends on the thickness of the fabric. To be on the safer side, you can let it be that way for an hour extra or so.

This method helps when you want a greater expansion of your spandex clothing. If following the process once does not give you the optimum stretch that you desire, then repeat the process until you receive the required amount of stretch.

When You Want Greater Degree of Expansion

3. When You Want Greater Degree of Expansion: Do it with Baby Shampoo 

The third method is also a very simple and quick method and you can easily do it by yourself right at home. This method involves the use of a baby shampoo. Isn’t that cute?

For this method all you need to do is fill a tub or sink with hot water. Remember, for this method you do not want the water to be too hot- 85-90 degrees Fahrenheit is good enough. Make sure that the water is little warmer than room temperature and you’re good to follow this process.

Once you have filled the tub or sink with warm water, add a considerable amount of baby shampoo into the water (you can even use mild shampoo). Once you’ve added the shampoo, stir the water and check if the water has turned into a soapy consistency.

In this method what happens is, the shampoo softens the fibers of the spandex which helps it to stretch quickly.

Keep the garment soaked in the shampoo water for about 30 minutes and make sure that the entire garment is completely immersed in the water. The amount of time you soak will ensure that the soap has penetrated into every fiber of the spandex material. After 30 minutes, squeeze and twist the garment to wring out the excess water. Continue doing it until water has stopped dripping from the garment.

Avoid rinsing at all, as that can relax the fibers as you stretch out the fabric. In case you see the garment is still moist even after all the wringing, roll it between two dry towels and leave it for ten minutes. The towels will absorb the excess moisture in the garment.

Like the previous method, lay the wet garment evenly on a flat and hard surface and secure one of its sides with weights (3-5lb). Then, stretch the garment from the free side as much as you can and secure this edge with weights too.

What happens here is that the baby shampoo softens the fibers of the spandex which helps it to stretch and relax permanently. Once again make sure that you do not use weights which will damage the fabric or vice versa.

Now all you have to do is wait till the stretched out garment dries off completely. Let it sit for a couple of hours in that stretched out manner. Removing the weights before the fibers have dried will bring back the garment to its original size. For the garment to completely dry, it may take an hour or so but this again depends on the thickness of the fabric.

This method helps you achieve a greater degree of expansion of the spandex material. Repeat the process if the stretch is not enough just doing it once.

How to Take Care of Stretched Spandex Material?

Now that you know about how to stretch spandex, now you will need to know how to take care of the spandex that you just stretched. In this section we will tell you about it. 

Do not expose the garment to severe heat. Heat will contract the fibers (shorten it) and take it back to the original size. Also, heat can cause the garment to breakdown as the elastane fibres get affected badly.

The stretched out spandex garment must always be washed in room temperature or cold water or if you are washing it in the washing machine, put it on the cool setting. Use a mild detergent and rinse it well once the washing is done.

Make sure to wash it only when it gets dirty. Too much unnecessary wash will not serve your purpose and the garment will start retaining its original size.

Always air-dry the garment. This helps to protect the stretched out spandex fibers. To air dry you can lay it on a flat surface, hang it from a clothes hanger or pin it from a clothesline.


So, these simple ways tell you how to stretch spandex and all of these can be performed by you right in your home. However, before going into these methods make a note of the amount of spandex or elastane content in the garment.

This you will find in its care label. About 10% spandex content is fine, but more than that will require extra attention.