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decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice

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  • decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice

    I am trying to bring back to life a latex T-shirt, that has been stored badly**.
    The latex has started to decompose and has become sticky, almost liquid. Only on one side (inside fortunately), and hasn't yet got right through the latex.

    Any ideas?

    ** Surprisingly, I thought it was being stored well, on a wooden coathanger, not touching anything else, in the dry, no sun, no draughts. But the latex has reacted with the varnish on the wood, and started to turn to goo.
    🎈📌💥 🐕 🐖

  • #2
    Re: decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice

    From my limited knowledge, it's a chemical reaction spreading throughout the material. Also why it's known as 'Latex Cancer' among LARPers. I don't think it can be reversed, as adding new material just means it will decay as well. Only thing I can think of would be cutting out the infected areas, hoping it did not infect the 'healthy' material and either try to combine the remaining shirt with orher pieces or turn it into a tube top.


    • #3
      Re: decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice


      I wiped all the sticky liquid goo away with isopropyl alcohol, until no further blackness was transferred to the cleaning cloth. Dried it thoroughly with a cool hairdryer.

      I applied four thin coats of Copydex (a water/ammonia solution of latex) with a brush over the affected area and beyond; allowing to dry thoroughly between coats.

      Allowed it to dry thoroughly for a week, when it was no longer tacky, and added another four thin coats as above.

      Waited another three weeks for it to be dry (no more clingy than the rest of the latex); and yesterday applied some powder over the area. Wore it for a few hours, and it didn't stick to me, all looks good. Washed it as usual in warm water with a drop of washing up liquid, and allowed to dry.

      All seems good - and cos I've missed it so much, I'm likely going to be wearing it for a few hours every other day.

      Watch this space........
      🎈📌💥 🐕 🐖


      • #4
        Re: decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice

        Good to hear that you had success with this type of repair. I would have thought that there was nothing you could do.
        Thanks for posting!


        • #5
          Re: decomposing latex clothing - seeking advice

          Just some basic care, is to rinse with mild soap warm water after wear, and air dry not in the sun, then wipe down and talc. I store mine in food grade zip lock bags to reduce oxidation.

          Sweat, body oils and any petroleum based liquid will deteriorate latex garments pretty quickly if not care for. Latex will also stain and react with copper and other metals.