Why you need a pill shaver, and how to use it

February 2, 2011 in Fashion, Style, Style Tools, Sustainability by alliemcc

Here's the next part of my monthly series on style tools everyone should have– if you wear clothes, you should think about investing in all or most of the tools I’m going to tell you about.  Taking care of your clothes is better for the environment and your budget.  If you have questions or requests, please send them my way! Allie @ AnalogueChic . com


The Pill Shaver


What is it?

No, it has nothing to do with pharmaceuticals.

It's a handheld device that looks like a mini electric razor. Think Norelco.

There are other types, such as a comb-like razor, or a sweater stone, but the mini-razor kind is probably the most common.

Why you need one:

How pills form – Diagram via Free Patents Online

1. To remove pills (fuzzballs) from your sweaters and other knit and woolen clothes.

2. So you can stop disposing of your sweaters every year, thereby saving the environment and your budget.

How it works:

Most modern pill shavers (a.k.a. clothing shavers) are battery operated with a small motor connected to razor blades behind a guard.

Because of the guard, the blades can only slice through fibers that are sticking up out of the weave or knit of the fabric.

How to use it:

Lay your garment out flat on an ironing board or table, or on your bed (or the floor, if you must). Then remove the plastic blade guard (not the perforated metal one!), flip the power switch, and then gently rub the pill shaver over the areas that you want to treat on your garment.  There's no need to press hard– the blades will catch any fibers or pills sticking up.

To clean it:

The pill shaver has a catch area that collects the shaved off pills and lint. You unclip it, much as you would the dust cartridge on a bagless vacuum cleaner, dump it out, and replace it. Your pill shaver may also come with a small brush you can use to clean the blades when you remove the guard.

When to use it:

Any time your garments need to be refreshed by removing the pills.  Use it on woolen garments and any knit garments– I've even used it on tights and leggings.

You'll especially need it to smooth out the areas on sleeves, under arms, and where your handbag rubs against your top or coat.

Where to get it:

1. In the laundry/clothing care section of a drug store or grocery store.

2. At a fabric store that sells apparel or fashion sewing supplies.

3. Get yours here or here in my Amazon store! (Head's up: those are affiliate links.)

If you missed my previous guide on the velvet brush, read it here.

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