Is It Okay To Wear Wrinkled Linen? Tips and Tricks

Linen wrinkles. There are some things you can do to reduce the wrinkling, but be aware that you are fighting a losing battle.

But let’s take a step back here.

Why do people even care about wrinkles? Everyone knows about this disadvantage of line, but yet we never seem to embrace it. We get conscious when someone points out wrinkles on our shirts, and we keep ironing linen fervently. How about just wearing wrinkled clothing?

So, is it okay to wear wrinkled linen?

It is completely okay to wear wrinkled linen. In fact, casual clothing pieces made from linen may even look slightly better if they are a bit wrinkled. These wrinkles add a bit of character to outfits and make them look more three-dimensional.

Can you wear wrinkled linen garments?

wrinkled clothing

No matter how much you try, your linen garments are going to get wrinkled. There’s not a lot you can do to prevent that, so it would be better if you just expect it.

Now, you can either go crazy ironing and steaming your linen shirt, or you can just say an FU to society and wear linen how it was meant to be worn.

There are some things that you need to keep in mind though.

Linen suits should never be worn wrinkled. The only caveat here is that if you are wearing your suit to an extremely casual or high-fashion event, then a couple of wrinkles here and there might actually work in your favor and give you more of a laidback vibe.

Linen shirts and pants can be worn wrinkled, but only on casual occasions. Shirts and trousers also look decent with a few wrinkles here and there, but make sure that things are not extreme. If the wrinkles are so prominent that they overpower the rest of your look, then maybe avoid that shirt.

Half-sleeved wrinkled linen shirts look great. Especially if they have loud patterns, the kind you see in Hawaiian shirts. A bonus style tip for you is to layer your half-sleeved linen shirts over a white tank top. This kind of outfit will definitely look amazing in casual situations.

shirt over tshirt
A linen-blend Hawaiian shirt layered over a t-shirt.

how to keep linen from wrinkling?

There are a few ways to keep linen from wrinkling:

  1. Properly ironing the linen before it is worn or used can help to prevent wrinkles from forming. Use a warm iron and iron on the reverse side of the fabric to avoid any potential burning.
  2. Removing linen from the dryer while it is still slightly damp and then hanging or laying it flat to finish drying can also help to prevent wrinkles from forming.
  3. Avoid overloading the washing machine or dryer when washing linen, as this can cause the fabric to wrinkle.
  4. Consider using fabric softener or adding a small amount of vinegar to the rinse cycle to help soften the linen and reduce wrinkles.
  5. If you must fold linen, fold it neatly and tightly.
  6. Hang clothes on hangers instead of folding them when storing them.
  7. Use a steamer to remove wrinkles.

Is it okay to wear wrinkled linen in formal occasions?

The only time when you should be wary of wearing wrinkled linen clothing is when you find yourself in formal occasions. These types of occasions call for a more business, dapper and dressy look.

But even in these situations, you can get through with a couple of wrinkles here and there. Just make sure that nothing is obvious.

If you are planning to go to a wedding or a business brunch or something else along these lines, I recommend that you take some time to get wrinkles out of your linen clothing.

You can of course do this with an iron or a steamer, but there are also multiple ways to get wrinkles out of linen garments without ironing.

Why does linen wrinkle?

Linen wrinkles primarily because of exposure to moisture. All other cellulose-based fabrics also wrinkle this way, but the shape of the linen fabric makes it wick and absorb more moisture and thus leads to more shrinkage.

Heat also plays a big secondary role in letting linen wrinkle. Heat breaks the bonds holding polymers in place within the fibers of a fabric. At that point when the bonds are broken, the fibers are less inflexible concerning one another, and can now move into new positions. Which leads to wrinkles.

This is also one of the major reasons behind the shrinkage of linen garments.

Now, you must be wondering how your linen shirt gets exposed to heat and moisture?

The answer is you.

Linen wicks and absorbs the moisture from your sweat. As this water evaporates, the space that it occupied is left empty and that’s what leads to wrinkles.

Should linen pants have a crease?

Linen pants can have a crease if they are meant to be worn on dressier occasions, but it is a personal choice of the wearer.

Creased pants look best on business occasions and formal events. When paired with something classic like a white shirt, they are very appropriate for such events. Some people also claim that they make you look longer, but I don’t really agree with this belief.

Flat-front linen pants do not have a crease and are more suited to casual occasions. Although you can wear flat-front pants on dressier occasions, but for the most part they are going to be the workhorses of your casual wardrobe.

So the answer to the question of whether you should crease your linen pants or not comes down to your lifestyle. If you work at a place where casual clothing is frowned upon, go and get a crease. Otherwise, just avoid it and wear flat-front pants as I do.

Does linen wrinkle more than cotton?

Linen wrinkles way more than cotton. Linen clothing also wrinkles pretty quickly, but cotton takes a good amount of time before letting wrinkles appear.

There are various benefits to wearing linen in the summer over cotton, but lack of wrinkles does not make the list. But like I said above, this does not become much of an issue if you only wear your linen clothing casually.

However, there are times when even cotton can wrinkle a lot, depending on the quality of the original plant and the chemicals that it is treated with.

One important thing to note is that a linen shirt should not be judged for its quality by how wrinkled it gets; because being stiff and wrinkled is a natural property of linen.

Do cotton linen blends wrinkle?

Cotton-linen blends do wrinkle, but not as much as pure linen clothing. Most blends are 55% linen + 45% cotton, and thus you can expect to see some wrinkles due to the presence of linen.

Wrinkles are a characteristic of linen clothing. So no matter which other fabric you blend it with, you are not going to be able to completely get rid of wrinkles.

The only exception to this rule is linen-polyester blends because polyester being a synthetic fabric has much higher wrinkle-resistance properties.

If you want to stop your linen-cotton blends from getting extremely wrinkled, one tip I would give you is to stop throwing them in the dryer for long periods of time. Put them in for 5 minutes, take them out, shake them, and then put them up on a hanger. You can steam these garments when they dry out a bit.

Read: Does Linen Stretch?

Final Remarks

Fashion is subjective. That’s the whole beauty of it.

If you don’t have a problem with wearing wrinkled linen, then nobody should have a problem with you wearing wrinkled linen. You would see many influencers (especially on YouTube) talking about “style rules” and “style mistakes”.

Let me clear it up for you- There are no style mistakes.

So just wear what you like and stop caring about the opinion of others.