Why Are Some T-Shirt Made From Scratchy Cotton? Can I Make It Less Scratchy?

T-shirts are meant to be comfy. In fact, T-shirts should be like a second skin, you should not even notice that you are wearing something. T-shirts should be soft and comfortable enough to sleep in, relax in and much more. There are enough uncomfortable clothes and other unpleasant things in the world as it is. Every once and a while, we unfortunately come across a T-shirt made from scratchy cotton. This shirt is always the one with our favorite design or saying on it. We often want to wear this particular shirt more than any other, if only it were just more comfortable!

T-shirts that are made from scratchy cotton tend to be the cheaper, lower quality ones. They are not the combed cotton which has all the scratchy components of the cotton fiber combed out to ensure a soft, pleasant, final cotton product. Thread count also is responsible for some scratchy T-shirts out there on the market. If the thread count is low, it typically means that the yarns used in making it are not the fine ones required for soft material. Thread count is actually the number of threads per square inch of fabric. Soft fabrics should have at least a 180-thread count.

There is not a lot you can really do to make a scratchy T-shirt less scratchy, as this sensation comes as a result of the manufacturing process used in making the material for the shirt. However, there are a few things you can do to make it more tolerable. Using a liquid fabric softener while washing your T-shirts is a great idea. It will make the fabric softer and more touchable. Another solution may be to put another softer T-shirt below the scratchy one you want to wear to avoid having it touch your body. Another solution is time. Often with use and repeated washing and drying, you will find that your formerly scratchy T-shirt has become soft and cozy. The washer and dryer have an unbeatable way of breaking down fibers and making them soft and fuzzy with time. The only problem with waiting out the break down of your shirt, is that often the shirt is also looking scruffy by the time it becomes soft enough to enjoy.

The most comprehensive solution to your problem of uncomfortable, scratchy T-shirts is to buy new ones of a better quality. You can opt for a custom-made tee in your choice of color, style, size and quality. You can spoil yourself with the luxury of a high-quality T-shirt and even replace the scratchy one you have by completely replicating the old shirt with the fun and ease of customization. You can put a picture of someone you love on a tee, you can brag of someone or something you are proud of. You can list accomplishments, tell about your passions or speak about your beliefs. You can even recreate a favorite shirt that you no longer wear for whatever reason. A custom-made T-shirt is the solution to your scratchy T-shirt problem.

Get your super soft, high quality custom-made T-shirt just for you and make sure you have the perfect tee for you everyday!

4 thoughts on “Why Are Some T-Shirt Made From Scratchy Cotton? Can I Make It Less Scratchy?

  1. The S.D.F.C.

    Great article and echoes what we’ve been preaching to people and our customers for years. Nothing worse than having to grin and bear the uncomfortable wearing experience your favourite “scratchy cotton” t-shirt gives you. Hopefully more tee manufacturers will switch to brushed or combed cotton in the future.

  2. Sue

    Sadly, I had a feeling that the answer was in the manufacturer’s
    choice of raw materials. Sigh…and I’m finding it more and more often. Sheets are scratchy ; tees are scratchy; and kitchen wash cloths are stiff and unabsorbent.
    My husband and I both are dealing with stiff, scratchy tees, bought from different sources. The kitchen cloths were made in India and sold at Walmart (under their “Mainstays ” brand.) The scratchy sheets that I bought (from Walmart) under the “Canopy ” brand were also made in India.
    So….I’m going to watch out for that!

  3. Tom

    What is wrong with cotton today? And why do I feel like the only one who notices it?!

    Every single t-shirt that you buy today is made from this scratchy, unwearable material. You literally cannot find a cotton shirt that is soft. In the 90s and early 2000s, all cotton was soft. It was the norm. They must have systemically changed their process for creating cotton around 2008. Now I have to go on ebay and buy vintage clothes from the 1990s to buy a shirt that I can actually wear! This is ridiculous.

    Is this some sort of Agenda 21, depopulation initiative going on? Let’s lace make cotton very scratchy and put formaldehyde in it so people will develop cancer faster. They actually DO use formaldehyde in cotton production, believe it or not.

    Another problem is towels. They are made from plastic or something today. They feel like plastic and absorb about as much water as a plastic bag does. They just kind of move water around your body after you take a shower. It doesn’t absorb water.

    Why am I the only person that seems to notice this!? Why aren’t people asking questions? Very strange world we live in today.

  4. alex

    Tom, you are not alone. I also experience the same problem. Even previously nice companies like Banana Republic who charge a premium, have switched to the most stiff, scratchy cotton which I find unwearable. Skin crawling, burning itch from putting them on especially in winter. I don’t doubt that our skin is more sensitive, but I took an older BR shirt into the store during a return to show the clerk just how different they are. He said “wow you are right” but didn’t go beyond that point. I suspect this is the result of chemical treatments to the cotton to make the shirt no iron or perhaps ultra-low grade cotton. One thing is clear, most of these shirts are coming from China and probably cost a few dollars each to be resold at 5x markup. It has to go back to cheapness more than anything. BR, the Gap, and every other company has gone with profit over quality to an extreme and they have lost a customer.

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