So first of all, what exactly is a polyester?

Polyester is a broad term that refers to any fabric or garment made of polyester yarns or fibres. Polyester fibres are thermoplastic, or heat-delicate. This ensures that fabrics made entirely of polyester may have permanent pleats added to them, as well as decorative patterns and shapes laser-cut onto them.

Polyester material is slick and almost silky on contact, and the fibres may be woven or knitted to make the fabric, but knitted fabrics are more flexible. It’s a relatively bright fiber that’s easy to adapt for multiple purposes.

Can you dye nylon?

Can you tie dye rayon?

Can you dye polyester?

So, is it really possible to dye polyester material and garments?

Polyesters may be coloured, but the approach is time consuming. Polyester tie-dyeing materials are not the same as cotton tie-dyeing materials. It’s possible that you’ll have to use entirely different dyes. No dyes that work on natural fibres can be on polyester. You might need to use disperse dye, a specific polyester dye, or ditch on dyes entirely and then use fabric paints.

Synthetic fabrics, such as polyester, do not always retain added color as well as natural fabrics, such as cotton. Since the fabrics are less absorbent, additives or specialized dyes are often used to prevent the pigment from fading or running.

polyester tie dye Tshirt
polyester tie dye Tshirt

What happens when you dye polyester?

Pleats and shapes can be established in the fabric with heat, making polyester a common fabric for designers. Since the disperse dye requires boiling water to make the colour permanent, dyeing polyester fabrics, could cause the heat-set patterns to be altered. Even if dark coloured dyes are being used, patterns, stains, logos, bleach marks, and fading or worn patches can still be visible upon dyeing.

Most significantly, you must be aware of the exact fabric type before choosing a dye that will operate on it. Polyester must be colored in boiling water with disperse dyes. These dyes are designed to dye polyester or nylon, but they will not dye natural fibres like cotton thread used during the garment’s construction. The fabric must be ready before it can be dyed. This necessitates the removal of starches, sizing, and finishing from the cloth.

The fabric’s base colour has an effect on the final colour. Identifying colour theory will assist you in predicting the final outcome.  Furthermore, the end colour of the selected dye colour can differ depending as to how much dye was used how long the material is in the dyeing process.

Dyeing polyester guide (how to tie dye polyester)

Method 01: Disperse dyes.

Disperse dyes are a form of non-ionic dye that has a low water solubility and is mainly dispersed in water due to the impact of the dispersing agent during the dyeing procedure. In room-temperature, they would have a rather minimal solubility. These dyes are however non-ionic, which means that chemical bonds hold their atoms intact.

  1. Purchase disperse dyes, tie your shirt, and immerse it in boiling dye.  Polyester needs a much higher temperature for immersion dyeing than other materials. For even exposure, the material should be left in the boiling dye for 1/2 to 1 hour with continuous stirring. Before you can anticipate some colour absorption, you’ll need to boil your water on the stove.
  2. To assist the color soak into the polyester, you’ll normally need to mix a dye carrier or colour intensifier, which can emit a foul odour. This necessitates the use of the conventional tie-dye process, which involves only one colour being added at a time.
  3. Wash your polyester product in hot water to get rid of dirt, grease, and sizing until you have your disperse dye and carrier and are ready to tackle the boiling and dyeing procedure, or the brush or squeeze bottle procedure. Then, to prepare your material for tie-dying, assemble random bunches and protect each scrunched region with a rubber band or string.
  4. Cover the product in plastic once you’ve tie dyed it and leave it to recover for at least four hours, or up to 24 hours for darker colors. For proper colour fixing, the room temperature must be above 70 degrees.
  5. Loosen the product and rinse it constantly in warm water until the stain is cleared. Then, to get rid of any residual dye from the fabric, wash it in hot water with Synthrapol, a pH-neutral industrial grade detergent.

Method 02: Fabric paint.

Fabric paint may be used instead of dye as an alternative. While some paints would need to be heat-set momentarily as instructed by the manufacturer, this has the benefit of not needing high heat like disperse dyes do. Just use fabric paints that are labelled as being capable of working on synthetic fabrics. Certain fabric paints are only suitable for natural fibres.

Alongside the fabric paint manufacturer’s instructions, dilute the fabric paints with water, then mix the fabric into the paint, squirt it on with plastic bottles, or add it with a paint brush. Until heat-setting the fabric, make sure it’s completely dry.

Top FAQs & answers related to Can you tie dye polyester?

Can you dye 100% polyester?

Polyester is a particularly difficult material to dye, specifically if the garment is 100% made of the material. That’s because polyester is a synthetic fiber manufactured from petroleum that is basically plastic associated with production procedures. Polyester has no ionic properties and is hydrophobic. Nevertheless, there are still a few items that can dye polyester and polyester variants.

Can you tie dye 60% cotton 40% polyester?

Materials made up of 60% cotton would not stain very intensely. Since the polyester would not absorb the dye, you would get pastel shades that are 40% lighter than the standard colours. Just about any tie-dye kit is an obvious option.




This article explained on the possibilities of dyeing polyester. Multiple methods to dye polyester were also listed with necessary guidelines.(can i tie dye polyester) 

Stay tuned on this website to explore more interesting articles. Do not forget to read our previous articles.

Can you dye nylon?

Can you tie dye rayon?

Can you tie dye a grey shirt?