If you enjoy the great outdoors, you need to know how to get burrs out of clothing. Nature is incredible, and spending time in it is a brilliant way to relax and unwind, but getting burrs out of clothes can be stressful.
Burrs are ingeniously designed seeds for certain plant species. They’re covered in tiny sharp hooks which latch onto the fur of passing animals, taking the seeds far from the mother plant to spread them. While this benefits plant propagation, it’s less fun for hikers, hunters, and any unsuspecting person spending time in grassy regions.
Since they’re sheathed in little pointy prongs, touching burrs hurts, and getting them in your skin is a miserable experience. Address a burr on your jacket as soon as you spot it to prevent it from working further in and reaching your body. Find out how to remove burrs from fabric without injuring yourself or ruining your clothes.
- How to Remove Burrs From Fabric at Home
How to Remove Burrs From Fabric at Home
We’ve all had that moment where we look down and discover the bottom of our jeans are covered in burrs. It’s disheartening to pack your best tent for a trip or set out on a hike, only to be slowed down by these pointy little seeds on your clothes or, worse, your socks.
A burr’s hooked protrusions are so efficient at sticking they inspired George de Mestral to create velcro. Despite this, getting burrs out of clothes doesn’t have to be tough. Resist the urge to grab the burrs and pick them out with your fingers. Use one of our clever tips on how to get burrs out of clothing to ensure extraction is a piece of cake.
You can also follow our tips for removing sticky pollen stains off jeans and boots when any organic material gets stuck to your clothing.
What Are Burrs?
Burrs or burs are the seed of certain weed species and several invasive plants. Plants use burrs as a clinging conveyance to disperse their seed capsules. Burrs are equipped with hook shaped spikes to assist them in latching onto items.
Depending on their size and technique of attachment, they range in size from being barely noticeable to being rather substantial and even a bit painful to remove. Some burrs rest on clothing, and others go deeper and pierce the flesh.
Though these sticky seeds play a crucial role in nature, they’re literally a pain if they get stuck in your pants while hiking. Burrs cling to everything from cotton and wool to animal fur. Don’t toss your outfit in the trash if it picks up burrs. Follow step-by-step instructions to remove all the burrs quickly.
Get Burrs off Hunting Clothes
By washing clothing with burrs, you can make the removal process easier by weakening the stiff burr spikes to reduce their hold on the fabric. Maintain a cold water temperature and set the washing machine to delicate. The sticky residue all over your clothes will loosen as the water swirls.
Start getting rid of the burrs by washing your clothes in the washing machine and drying your clothes first. Check the dryer dries the clothing completely before removing the burrs. Some seeds become loose and fall off during the wash. Use a different method to get rid of any remaining burrs after the washing is complete.
A flat edge like a knife can be used to scrape the burrs off your clothing. You can also use a knife to scrape gum and anything else stuck to your clothing.
How to Get Burrs Out of Clothing Using Duct Tape
Streamline the procedure for getting rid of burrs by using duct tape. This valuable tool is used for many things, so it’s no surprise there’s a hack for using duct tape to collect burrs from clothing. The portability of duct tape and its low price tag means it’s easy to carry some with you on hikes or at the campsite to take care of pesky burrs.
Cut a piece of duct tape big enough to cover the entire surface of your fabric with burrs and place it over it. Press down forcefully to ensure the tape adheres adequately to the afflicted areas.
Take care not to get pricked as you push down and slowly lift the tape. The tape adheres to the burrs and pulls them out as you peel the tape off. To treat a large area with lots of small burrs, wrap the duct tape around your hand, sticky side out, to make a sticky mitt. Press the glove over the fabric, tugging off burrs as you go.
Removing Burrs From Clothing With a Fine Tooth Comb
Get burrs out of clothing easily and lift them from your dogs fur with a fine-toothed comb. Using a comb with tightly spaced prongs rather than your fingers is wise to avoid getting stabbed. Bigger spaces allow fabric fibers or fur to pass through and catch burrs.
For larger burrs, it’s okay to use a comb with slightly wider prongs. Miniature burrs require very fine teeth, such as a lice comb.
Put the burr-infested garment on a level counter once it’s dry. Carefully comb over the problem areas using light pressure to prevent tearing or fraying the fabric. Hold the comb at an angle and pick up the burrs without being hard on the cloth.
The bristles of the comb fill up with the collected burrs. Remove the seeds at appropriate intervals, wear gloves, and keep combing until no burrs remain.
The Best Way to Remove Burrs From Clothing
Most people tend to reach for the tweezers first when encountering a burr. Since each burr must be removed individually, using tweezers is time-consuming, though effective. Using tweezers is a solid option if you have just a couple of burrs to deal with.
Lay the clothing flat and keep a bucket or container nearby to collect the burrs for proper disposal. Grasp the burrs firmly in the tweezer and pluck them out. Repeat the procedure until all the burrs are gone.
Using tweezers is the safest way to remove burrs from your clothing without endangering your skin. If you don’t have a pair of tweezers handy, there are other convenient instruments to get rid of burrs. A short pair of pliers completes the task as well. Never pick them with your fingers.
Get Rid of Burrs With a Metal Ruler
A metal ruler can help you lift burrs out of cloth in a pinch. Lay the garments flat and slide the metal ruler against the base of the burr, flat side up. This burr elimination protocol involves your fingers, so wear thick gloves to protect your skin.
Press the ruler’s edge into the hooks and use a gloved fingertip to bend the burr over and trap it on top of the ruler. Once you have a firm grip on the burr, hold down the fabric with your other hand and pull it away.
Pluck the burrs individually until you’ve gathered them all. This method is time-consuming and may be challenging for those with large or unsteady hands.
The Burr Paw Removes Stubborn Burrs
If you hike, hunt, camp, or encounter burrs regularly, a burr removal tool might be a wise investment. A gadget like the Burr Paw is practical when you’re away from home because it fits comfortably in your pocket.
The Burr Paw is a flexible glove worn on the hand. While in use, the glove effortlessly adapts to surfaces with irregular shapes, such as shoelaces or the clothing on your body.
Burr Paw’s cover picks up stickers and burrs with a quick sweeping motion to ensure you and your clothing are burr-free. To remove burrs and stickers off the Burr Paw, rub sections of the mitt together; the stickers or burrs will come out.
Precautions for Getting Burrs Out of Clothes
Though burrs are small, they are incredibly sharp and pointed. The hooked edges on the spines mean they hook into the skin and are surprisingly painful to remove. It’s vital to wear gloves when removing burrs. Furthermore, while finger-picking stickers from your sweater might seem like a good idea, it’s best to refrain.
Using your fingers puts you at risk, and you’ll likely snap the spines and only partially remove the burr. Once only the tiny spike remains hooked on the fabric, it’s much harder to remove without damaging your apparel.
In many ways, dealing with a burr is worse than cleaning a stain. These sticky little seeds cling to your hair, and small burrs work into your socks or tights and ruin the delicate fabric. If you’ve accidentally walked through a bur plant, it pays to know how to remove burrs from fabric.
Though it’s tempting to start grabbing and yanking the burrs out, this can potentially harm the material and injure your fingers. Use an intelligent method of burr removal to make the process easier.
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