How to Stretch Cotton Pants

by Celeigh O'Neil ; Updated September 28, 2017

Feel comfortable in your cotton pants again after manually stretching them.

Stock Foundry / Design Pics/Valueline/Getty Images

A well-fitted pair of cotton pants can see you through busy days, as well as those spent lounging at home in comfort. But beware -- throw them in the dryer one too many times, and they'll lose their shape and feel restrictive in all the wrong places. Stretch your favorite pair of cotton pants, and add them back to your weekly wardrobe rotation.

Wash the pants in cold water with a mild detergent and no fabric softener. Soaking-wet cotton will stretch easiest.

Remove the pants from the washing machine, and gently wring them out over a sink to remove excess water.

Put the pants on top of a towel on a flat surface. Grab the cuffs of the right pant leg with one hand and the right side of the waistband with the other hand.

Pull the waistband upward while pulling the cuffs tightly downwards Hold the stretched position for 20 seconds. Release for 5 seconds, and repeat twice. Repeat the stretching process on the left side of the pants.

Lay the pants on the towel and allow them to rest until they're half-way dry. Pull on the pants to stretch them to suit your body. Button them up if applicable.

Walk around in the pants, extending your legs more than usual as you move. Sit down on a chair and stand up, repeating this 10 times to encourage the fabric to stretch.

Remove the pants, and drape them over a railing to finish drying. Don't put the pants in the dryer, as the cotton will shrink.

Our Everyday Video

Brought to you by LEAFtv
Brought to you by LEAFtv

Photo Credits

  • Stock Foundry / Design Pics/Valueline/Getty Images

About the Author

Celeigh O'Neil has been writing professionally since 2008. She has a Bachelor of fine arts from the University of Ottawa, as well as degrees in fashion illustration/design, digital arts and certification in hair and makeup artistry. O'Neil was a frequent contributor to Toronto's "Dialog" newspaper and has worked as an instructional writer, creating lessons in fashion, art and English for students of all ages.