Does keeping your clothes in a Vacuum Storage Bag ruin them?
Yes and no.
Vacuum Storage Bags are a great way to store clothing, but some clothing will not do so well in them. Items that are naturally fluffy or have natural fibers like wool don’t do so well.
What Vacuum Storage Bags you use can also affect your clothing too. In this post, we go over some of the items you want to avoid sealing in the bags and the best vacuum storage bags to use.
What Vacuum Bags To Use
When in doubt, use the vacuum storage bags that you remove the air by rolling, like these here*. Using storage bags that require a machine like a vacuum cleaner to remove the air can sometimes overdo it with some clothing.
If you can get the storage bags with the hand pump then get those, it’s a good alternative to using a vacuum cleaner.
Don’t Seal These Items
- Natural Fibers like Wool
- Fluffy items like Sleeping Bags and Big Coats
Natural fiber items like wool should not be stored for extended periods of time in vacuum storage bags. A few months or switching seasons won’t be that bad, but when you leave it there for 6 months or more it can do some damage.
The reason is that natural fibers need to breathe to be able to keep themselves in their correct shape. Items like wool can even hold moisture in them. Some people say a wool sweater would need to be left to expand just as long as it was stored in the vacuum bag. I’m not sure on how correct it is but…
If you’re in doubt, don’t vacuum seal it!
Other items you want to avoid using vacuum-sealed bags are items that are fluffy. When you suck the air out, this causes the clothing to compress and keep that position for a long time. Such items as sleeping bags or fluffy coats should NEVER be vacuum sealed.
The reason why fluffy coats and sleeping bags work so well is do to the air that is trapped inside and compressing them can make them less capable of keeping the heat in. Also, there is no good way to “fluff” them back up.
When To Use Vacuum Storage Bags
The best way to use Vacuum Sealed bags is for the short term, traveling is a good example. Items like regular shirts and other minor items like underwear and socks are an excellent way to use vacuum-sealed bags.
Using vacuum sealed bags work great if you plan on traveling! You can fit more in the bag!
If you’re worried about wrinkles I have a guide about vacuum-sealed bags and if they crease clothing here.
Vacuum storage bags work very well to store seasonal stuff that is not fluffy or natural fibers. I would still recommend letting the items air out every 6 months.
Clever Thing To Do
Items like white t-shirts, gym shorts, and underwear with socks store very well for the long term in vacuum storage bags. In fact, it would be smart of you to keep an emergency clothing kit of said items in your car.
For this emergency kit, I would use the vacuum storage bag that requires a vacuum to remove the air like this one here*. Then keep these items in the trunk of your car at all times. You never know what will happen in life and being prepared is important.