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The benefits and qualities of the NEW Scrubby Cotton yarn

by Michelle Nussey

I’ve covered Red Heart’s Scrubby yarn before, but now they’ve gone and made it even more irresistible. Red Heart brought Scrubby, our favorite dish cloth yarn, out in cotton. This is move we’ve all been hoping for. Anyone who hasn’t tried out Scrubby yarn before because it was synthetic had better get out their needles.

Scrubby Cotton in colors Coral, Lemony, Loofa, and Jade

Scrubby Cotton in colors Coral, Lemony, Loofa, and Jade

All the specifications for Scrubby Cotton yarn are the same. It’s still considered a medium or worsted weight yarn with a recommended needle size of an 8US [5mm]. If you’re crocheting it onto another piece of work (or the other side of a knitted dish cloth) the hook size is I-9 [5.5mm]. The feeling of Scrubby Cotton yarn is fairly similar to the original Scrubby, if anything, the cotton is slightly softer. I think this is a great addition to knit any spa products where you want to be a bit more gentile. Also, all the adorable scrubby patterns Red Heart has on their site are even more baby friendly.

A ball of Scrubby Cotton yarn in the color Jade in front of the other three colors. This shows the label with washing instructions machine wash and dry.

A shot of the label for any washing instructions. Machine wash and dry, my favorite!

I found this great article on the Red Heart website about knitting with the original Scrubby yarn, but it is definitely worth a read. Scrubby Cotton yarn doesn’t flow the same way a smooth yarn would while you’re knitting. The little fibers that branch off the main strand are amazing for scrubbing power, but a little bit of a hindrance for untangling purposes. If I had to give you one, and only one, piece of advice it would be to store your yarn properly and avoid tangling at all costs.

A ball of Red Heart's Scrubby Cotton yarn in the green Jade color. The yarn was taken from the inside and became tangled when trying to pull more out.

Please learn from my mistakes, these are not meant to be center pull balls. The yarn gets snagged quite often and comes out all at once. It’s much easier to just take from the outside of the ball!

Luckily, I don’t have to limit myself to one piece of advice! This yarn is a cotton yarn and doesn’t have the same amount of stretch your average yarn does. Take the advice I gave in this article about Creme de la Creme cotton yarn; if your hands hurt and they’re done knitting, then so are you. Take a break, work on another project in a yarn that has lots of stretch.

My little knitting swatch of Scrubby Cotton in Jade. Just taking it for a little test drive before the real work!

My little knitting swatch of Scrubby Cotton in Jade. Just taking it for a little test drive before the real work!

If you’re a knitter who has their yarn in a death grip and ends up with really tight tension, this is going to be a time to practice loosening things up. The article 6 ways to relax your knitting tension was written a couple of years ago, but these tips and tricks never go out of style. I particularly want to emphasize tip #3 – giving slack. If you accidentally drop a stitch, you want to pick it back up. If you’re knitting tightly with Scrubby Cotton yarn it might slide down a row or two before you can gather it back up. The amount of texture in this yarn makes it more difficult to distinguish stitches, which also makes it challenging to find where your dropped stitch ran off. If you’re giving a generous amount of slack and drop a stitch, it will just stay where it is. That stitch will not run down at all, it will sit where it is and wait to be picked up.

Red Heart's Jade Scrubby Cotton yarn, with Loofa and Lemony underneath.

Jade Scrubby Cotton yarn, with Loofa and Lemony underneath.

If you’ve tried Red Heart’s Scrubby, Scrubby Sparkle, or Scrubby Cotton yarn before and have any tips or tricks of your own, please leave a comment! As it stands, I cannot recommend Red Heart’s Scrubby Cotton enough! It has all the tough cleaning power of Scrubby with the natural feel of cotton yarn. Watch out Spring cleaning, we’re ready for you this year.

This is part 1 of 5 in this series.

Go to part 2: 3 yarns take your knitted dishcloths from simple to sensational!



Adrian January 23, 2021 - 6:49 pm

Can I knit scarfs with scrubby cotton? I can not knit dish clothes

Anna February 13, 2019 - 7:08 pm

Can scrubby cotton be used with a knitting machine like an addi?

Camille January 27, 2018 - 4:11 pm

I have a question. I made a sample of cotton scrubby plain and with sugar and cream one was too scratchy. One too thick. Would the perfect cotton mix well with the scrubby to make a lighter weight washcloth? I am searching for the perfect alternative to a washcloth I used to buy but has been discontinued and wondered if perle cotton would work at all in a washcloth. I’m not very knowledgeable on yarns yet.

Carla A. Canonico February 1, 2018 - 4:37 pm

Hi Camille, what is harsh for one person might not be so for another. Mixing the cotton and scrubby could be a great alternative. It’s hard to tell if perle cotton would be appropriate for exfoliating, as I’m thinking it might be too soft. What I would do, is knit up a swatch with you think might be good for your skin, and try it out. You might even try a linen yarn too. I hope this helps.


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