This is Why Clothes Turn Inside Out in The Washing Machine!

Have you wondered why your clothes turn inside out in a washing machine?  Not only is it annoying, but it is also weird, and you might have your theories about why. 

Also, you may have searched and heard different opinions from different sources. 

Fortunately, you don’t have to search any further. I’ll be giving an in-depth explanation of why this occurs. 

Clothes inside a washing machine turn inside out due to the motion of the water and agitation. Clothes twist and turn around as they get mixed with other fabrics in the machine, which causes them to turn inside out. 

This article details why your clothes turn inside out in the washing machine. After reading this, you won’t have to search for extra information elsewhere. 

Why Will Your Clothes Turn Inside Out In A Washing Machine? 

Why Do Clothes Turn Inside Out In The Washing Machine

There are several reasons your clothes would turn inside-out in a washing machine. 

The most common reason is agitation when clothes are tumbled around in a mixture of water and detergent. 

Agitation causes your clothes to turn inside-out as they tumble around in the machine. 

Another reason is when you wash your clothes with a reverse tumble. Reverse-tumble wash causes your clothes to tumble in the opposite direction. 

Since the fabrics turn in a direction they don’t typically turn, this can cause them to turn inside out. 

In addition, some clothes don’t turn inside out.  Items of clothing like pants, overalls, and hoodies don’t turn inside out. 

Shirts, however, are most likely to turn inside out.  Furthermore, the nature of your washing machine may also explain why your clothes turn inside out. 

Washing machines that use impellers are less likely to turn clothes inside out. 

However, those that use agitators would almost always turn shirts, especially inside out. 

If you’re looking into buying a washing machine, you can find good ones here.

Do All Washing Machines Turn Clothes Inside Out? 

All washing machines need friction from the turbulence from the agitator or impeller to wash clothes. 

Therefore, this means all washing machines tend to turn clothes inside out.  But some types tend to do it more than others. 

Washing machines are of different types.  There are so many choices. 

In this article, we’d classify them based on what they use to generate turbulence, which dictates a washer’s ability to turn clothes inside out.

There are two types of washing machines, the ones that use agitators and those that use impellers.

Below is a detailed description of both; 

#1. Agitators

Agitators are tall spindles, finned or banned, found in the center of the wash basket. 

They twist to and fro, creating friction against clothing to help break down dirt. Most washing machines use agitators. 

The probability that your washer at home uses agitators is high.  Be sure to note that agitators would clean even the toughest stains out. 

Pros and cons of agitator washers are;

Pros Cons
Clothes get enough water and detergent Have less room.  No room for bulky fabrics. 
More effective in loosening dirt and debrisClothes can get caught in the agitator and might tear. 
Clothes get washed fasterMore friction means faster wear for your fabric 
More energy efficient More likely to turn your clothes inside out. 

#2. Impellers 

Shaped like low-profile cones, they usually have little fins or vanes.  The little vanes and fins help move and spin the water in the washer. 

The spinning creates currents in the washer, which washes your clothes. 

You can find impellers in high-efficiency washing machines.  Since they don’t make physical contact with the clothes, they’re more gentle. 

The pros and cons of impellers are as follows

Help clothes last longer because they’re gentleDue to their gentle nature, they may not get clothes so clean. 
There is more space in the washing basket.It might throw off the balance of the machine due to high-speed cycles. 
Use less water and spins faster Less energy efficient. 

Should You Turn Your Jeans Inside Out Before Washing In A Machine? 

Yes, it would be best if you always turn your jeans inside out when washing them. 

Not only would turning them inside out help preserve them for longer, but it’ll also reduce the dye bleed. Remember that jeans bleeding dye during the first wash is very common. 

Below are some reasons why you should wash your jeans inside out. 

#1. Reduce dye bleed

Jeans are prone to dye bleeds.  Turning them inside out would expose the inside to the friction of the washer.

Meanwhile,  protecting the inside of the jeans, in turn, would help preserve its dye.  Moreover, the inside of the jean is tougher and more resistant to wear. 

#2. Get the inner parts cleaner.

When washing, we usually concentrate on whether the stains on the outer parts are clean. 

Turning your jeans inside-out would expose the inner part to be washed better. 

The inner parts usually soak in the most sweat.  You don’t want a clean jean that smells bad, do you? 

#3. Prevent damage to designs 

Designs printed on your jeans might get ruined if you don’t turn them inside out. 

Be it ornaments or paint designs, you can preserve them by turning your jeans inside out. 

There are precautions to take while washing jeans to ensure they last long asides from turning them inside out. 

Below are instructions on correctly washing your jeans using a washing machine;

  • Use a gentle cycle to avoid fading. 
  • Use cold water.  Cold water would ensure your jean doesn’t shrink
  • Wash them inside out and wash them separately.  In case of a dye bleed 
  • If you must wash them with other clothes, they should have similar colors 
  • Hang dry or use a no-heat drying method.  Heat can cause them to shrink
  • Stretch the seams when they’re still a little damp.  Then hang back to dry completely. 

When washing new jeans, you should follow these steps;

  • Fill the tub with water, then mix with a mild detergent. 
  • Turn them inside, soak them in the tub, and don’t bunch them up. 
  • Let them soak in there for 30-45 minutes. 
  • Drain the water and refill.  After which, allow the clothes to sit there for another 10 minutes. 
  • Do this till the water is clear
  • Dry with a no-heat method. 

Drying jeans using a no-heat method is advised because stretch jean materials contain spandex. Spandex is what makes them stretchy and fit so nicely on you. 


In conclusion, we know that friction from agitation causes clothes to turn inside out.  Therefore, all washers turn clothes inside out, some more than others. 

However, clothes turned inside out aren’t bad, as it benefits the jeans and their wearer in many ways.

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