How to wash your strings

Seems simple enough but Ive had a few people ask if I just toss my strings in the washing machine to clean them. So here is a quick tut on how, if you ever need to, wash your strings to get max life and best play characteristics out of each one.

Now if you use cheap, bulk string this would not apply, as youd just toss them out every so hours and slap a new one on. But for those with higher end strings, the life spans may be immensely longer than bulk in comparison and will eventually get gunked up from day to day wear. I am pretty good about always washing my hands before playing but even still, dirty strings happen.

Here is my dirty string. Im my case I use Cloud Strings, so thats what will be used for this show and tell.

It doesnt look too bad until you see it right next to a freshly washed one that looks like new even though the “clean” string you see here has at least 10 to 15 hours of play time and just got its first washing.

Time to take that dirty guy off and spruce him up! I use what ever laundry detergent Ive got on hand, but most hand soaps and dish soaps will both work in a pinch. So get your string, drop a few to several drops of soap in your palm.

Next, as you could figure, go get it wet, and lather up. Squeeze the wadded up string in your hand several times while getting it wet to build up lather and work in soap. Only get it wet at first, do not hold underwater while lathering to keep soap from rinsing off before it gets a chance to soak in and penetrate all the way through.
Here you can see my soap doesnt foam up much after kneading, but that is by design so it doesnt overwhelm the washing machine with tenacious suds. Hand soaps will foam alot more.

Now that is all wet and soapy and lathered up, its time for the final scrub. This is done by “palm rolling” the string all the way down from end to end. Start at one side of the string and rub it between your palms like your would a stick if you were trying to make a fire with sticks. Do this for a second or two and then move down the string a bit, and repeat this process until you reach he other end
here I am about half way down

Here I am almost at the end palm rolling my way down.

Now rinse very well, squeezing, squishing, kneading all while under water. Make sure that soap gets out and clean water gets in.

And here is the freshly cleaned (but still wet!) string next to a freshly cleaned and dry one. Its color will lighten further as it dries the exact same as the comparison example.

Spin, flick, snap, hang dry. itll only take about 10 mins or so and BOOM. like new!

I desired you can rub a dryer sheet on them after they are dry since they have built in softeners as well. doesnt hurt, but not necessary.


YES! This is a great guide. Thank you!

Wow, I had no idea this was a real thing, makes the high end strings not seem so expensive!

Ive got one cloud sting on its 4th washing! easy 50+ hours on it so far. If i put in a group of others, i cant tell even which one is newer or older. I did this with Toxic Dragons and Toxic Yellow Jackets.

Some people save them up and put a bunch in a sock. Put it in with the rest of the laundry. My personal experience is not to do it with cotton, it breaks easily after that. Also with slick 50 and other strings, I find it does not return the springiness you get with a new string. My preference is just to replace them.

That is crazy!!

Wow! I didn’t know you could do that

I came here to see people say, “Yeah no you don’t wash strings, you risk it snapping and ruin your precious yoyos only to save a few cents”.
And if no one said that, I was gonna say it myself.
That is some high quality strings. To be honest I’ve never encountered one that has been used a lot and still not getting frayed. Usually they still look and play differently after washing compared to the new ones.

Ive had great success with washing both Cloud andd Toxic BG1 as well as Toxic Dragon strings. All performed great after washing, looked and played like new.

Bulk cheap string i would not bother with (anything that comes in a 100 pack is just filler for the trash can haha)

Ayyee nice window hanger! Great guide too. I often wash my kitty string and save it for the onestar that lives in my pocket, other than that it’s fresh string on anything I don’t want to see rolling down the pavement.