Can You Bleach 100% Polyester for Sublimation?

Sublimation printing has become increasingly popular due to it’s vibrant and durable results on fabric. However, it’s well known that sublimation inks adhere best to 100% polyester materials, making it a challenge for those who wish to achieve the same high-quality results on garments that contain a cotton-polyester blend. Therefore, to achieve the desired effect of bleached designs for sublimation, it’s necessary to find a shirt that’s a blend of both cotton and polyester. Moreover, the polyester content should be higher than the cotton content to avoid a faded appearance. By carefully selecting the right fabric, it’s possible to create unique and eye-catching sublimation designs with a bleached effect.

Do You Have to Bleach Before Sublimation?

When it comes to sublimating onto white polyester fabric, there’s no need to bleach it beforehand. The natural color of the fabric will provide a suitable canvas for the sublimation process. However, if you opt for a darker polyester blend fabric, bleaching can be a beneficial step to enhance the vibrancy of your design. By bleaching the fabric, you can lighten the base color, creating a higher contrast backdrop that allows your sublimated design to truly stand out.

First, it’s crucial to ensure that the fabric is a polyester blend and not 100% polyester. Bleaching 100% polyester can damage the fabric and affect it’s overall integrity. Additionally, it’s essential to follow the correct bleaching process to avoid any unnecessary damage.

To bleach a polyester blend fabric, start by diluting the bleach with water following the recommended ratio on the bleach bottle. Then, submerge the fabric in the bleach mixture and allow it to soak for the recommended time provided by the bleach manufacturer.

After bleaching, it’s important to properly dry and prepare the fabric before proceeding with sublimation. Ensure that the fabric is completely dry and free from any residual bleach. Additionally, make sure to follow the sublimation process carefully, including using sublimation inks and suitable heat press equipment, to achieve the desired results.

Just ensure to follow the recommended bleaching process and proper preparation before proceeding with sublimation to achieve the best results.

When it comes to achieving the best sublimation transfer results, white shirts with a 100 percent polyester count are the ideal choice. In this article, we will guide you through the entire bleaching process, ensuring that you’ve the knowledge and techniques required to achieve stunning sublimation prints on your shirts. Let’s dive into the details and unveil the secrets of successful sublimation bleaching.

What Shirts Can I Bleach Best for Sublimation?

When it comes to sublimation, finding the right type of shirt to work with is crucial for achieving optimal results. If youre wondering what shirts can be bleached best for sublimation, look no further than white shirts with a 100 percent polyester count. These shirts offer the best surface for sublimation transfer, allowing the ink to penetrate the fabric and create vibrant and long-lasting designs.

Before bleaching, make sure to wash the shirt to remove any dirt, oils, or sizing agents that may be present. This will ensure that the bleach can penetrate the fabric evenly.

You can do this by soaking the shirt in a mixture of water and hydrogen peroxide for a few minutes. After neutralizing, make sure to thoroughly rinse the shirt again to remove any remaining peroxide.

Remember to always test on a small area before working on the entire shirt.

It’s a common misconception that bleach can’t be used on polyester shirts. However, contrary to popular belief, bleach can indeed be effective in removing stains and brightening white polyester garments.

Does Bleach Work on Polyester Shirts?

However, it’s important to note that bleach can have varying effects on different types of polyester.

When using bleach on polyester, it’s recommended to dilute it with water to reduce it’s strength and minimize the risk of damaging the fabric. This can be done by mixing one part bleach with three parts water. Additionally, it’s advisable to spot test the bleach solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric before applying it to the entire garment.

The detergent can help break down oils and dirt that may be present on the fabric, allowing the bleach to penetrate more effectively.

In some cases, applying heat to the bleached polyester fabric can help activate the bleaching process. This can be done by using a hairdryer or exposing the fabric to direct sunlight. However, it’s important to be cautious when using heat, as excessive heat can damage the fabric or cause it to shrink.

This can be done by rinsing the garment under running water or soaking it in clean water for a few minutes. Once rinsed, the fabric should be dried according to the specific care instructions for polyester garments, which may involve air drying or using a low heat setting on a dryer.

Diluting the bleach, spot testing, adding detergent, and applying heat can all help enhance the bleaching process. However, it’s essential to follow the proper rinsing and drying procedures to ensure the fabrics longevity.


While sublimation inks are most effective on 100% polyester, the fabric itself doesn’t respond well to bleaching. To overcome this hurdle, it’s recommended to opt for shirts that are made with a blend of cotton and polyester, with the polyester content being higher than the cotton. This ensures that the bleached result won’t have a severely faded appearance.

  • Gillian Page

    Gillian Page, perfume enthusiast and the creative mind behind our blog, is a captivating storyteller who has devoted her life to exploring the enchanting world of fragrances.

Scroll to Top