Choosing Fabric Dye

Hello everyone! I’m going to briefly discuss fabric dyes because for some, dyeing fabric can help achieve a much more specific color you’re searching for. Dyeing fabric is something that I learned is easier said than done. There are so many techniques for dyeing fabric, but that’s for another time. For now, let’s get into learning about basic fabric dyes you can find at almost any art and hobby store.


RIT dye is a very versatile dye. I’ve used it numerous times, and given the right circumstances, it can make your fabric turn out really great. It has liquid and powder forms, so you get to make the choice there on how you want to do the process.

Standard RIT dye can only be used on natural fibers. Trying to use it on synthetic fibers results in the fabric being a lighter shade, and it won’t get any darker than said shade.

There are numerous natural fibers, which can be plant or animal based. Some more common ones include cotton, silk, wool, hemp, ramie, camel, alpaca and cashmere. Of course, these aren’t the only natural fibers you can find.

Keep this in mind when you decide on purchasing your dye.

RIT does have dye that can be used on synthetic fibers, like polyester, nylon and acrylic to name a few. This dye can be absorbed by the chemical-based fibers at higher temperatures. However, from my own personal experience, I have a much more difficult time with RIT’s synthetic dye. It tends to cause ventilation hazards and occasional bubbling over on the stove.

Dylon Dye

I discovered this little gem while browsing for some pretty vibrant colors. This brand is a warm-water, bath dye. I have had the least difficulty handling Dylon’s dye thus far. However, one setback for this is the lack of synthetic dye. I have yet to find a synthetic dye for this brand. If you’re looking for something to work with synthetic fibers, then this dye isn’t the choice for your fabric unless you’re actively searching for a way to lighten the color choice. That doesn’t change my feelings on using the colors from this company.

iDye Poly

As the name suggests, this dye is used on synthetic dyes such as polyester, and requires boiling water and a well-ventilated working space. It works quite nicely, and is a product of the Jacquard Products Company. The basic steps for this product is to pour the color, drop the color packet intensifier into the pot and stir. For my own synthetic fabrics, this has worked best compared to the RIT Dye.


This is also a Jacquard Product, and it is used for the natural fibers. Just like its synthetic counterpart, it works very well and also has very simple steps. It’s a basic drop and go, but this dye is also another hot bath dye. Take care when working with the hot baths as they can be dangerous if precautions aren’t followed or taken.

Tulip Dye

This is a company that produces dye for natural fabrics with a focus on tie-dye so there is a wide range of colors. Unlike the other dyes in the list, this dye is activated with cold water and doesn’t require any special precautions outside of stain care. I’ve sampled this brand and have liked the results, but it is also more expensive than the others because it comes in packages of colors and is a tad bit harder to find single colors.


Woo, we’ve made it to the real question. How much does this stuff cost? The lowest can be from 3 US Dollars and at most, 15 US Dollars. It is also dependent on colors. However, generally, in order from cheapest to most expensive it goes:

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there’s a lot of information here that can seem a bit… overwhelming, but if you take it slow and sample materials out first, then perhaps you’ll find that brand perfect for your own needs as a cosplayer and as an artist. Everything that you see here can be located and bought online or at your local art supply store.

As always, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

Eirian Silver

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5 thoughts on “Choosing Fabric Dye

  1. Hello, thanks for the interesting article, I read everything and it has thought me on how to select my fabric dye, and much emphasis was placed on the “RIT” dye I’ll take out time to search for that and see how it’s effective on fabrics. Obviously everyone in my house is going to get a glimpse of this

  2. Wow, I enjoyed this so much. You know, I just started learning a couple of things about tye and dyeing so it’s just so wonderful that you are able to tell me something about it. Now I think I better the the aoramrtert that I need to consider begore I decide to buy a fabric dye.

  3. Hello there, thanks a lot for sharing this beautiful piece of information here with us. I must say i really did enjoyed going through your review as it contains valuable informations one needs to be aware of. Choosing the right fabric dye is really important and I think this is something everyone haas to know of, thanks for the info

  4. Thanks for the helpful information on choosing the right fabric dye. I had no idea that different dyes are suitable for different types of fabric. I know it will still down to trial and error to achieve the desired colour, but thanks for pointing me in the right direction and save me some time researching.

  5. Hello there thanks a lot for sharing this beautiful piece  of information here with us. I must say i really did enjoyed going through your review as it contains valuable informations one needs to be aware of. I did not know much about fabric dye but this has been very helpful to me in figuring out how they can be of use

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