Is it possible to bleach polyester?

Name: melissa
Message: Is it possible to bleach polyster. I am trying to reverse tie-dye a maroon apron with bleach. Any suggestions??

No, sorry, this is not likely to work at all satisfactorily. Synthetics such as polyester not only do not reliably lose their color in response to bleach, they are often damaged irreparably by their exposure to it. Polyester often acquires an unpleasantly yellowed appearance which cannot be remedied.

Instead of attempting to chemically bleach polyester, use opaque white fabric paint to make your design. While all fabric paint will affect the feel of fabric somewhat (unlike dyes), more expensive fabric paint does so to a lesser extent. You can buy fabric paint from companies such as Dharma Trading Company and PRO Chemical & Dye (for websites and contact information, see my listing of companies that sell dyeing supplies); look for brands such as Neopaque or Jacquard Textile Colors, or ProChem's brand ProFab Textile Paints, being careful to buy only the opaque colors, as most fabric paints are transparent.

Alternatively, buy a white 100% cotton apron from Dharma Trading Company and dye it with fiber reactive dye, such as Procion MX type dye.

Posted: Tuesday - November 23, 2004 at 07:47 AM          

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