There is a whole lot of science involved in the breakage of a clothes hanger when bent.

A basic physical term used to describe this act is called inelasticity.


What science says?

Well, let’s begin studying some science here.

What happens when you bend a rigid plastic hanger? Similarly, what will happen to a plastic comb when bent? They both share a similar property.

In a simple tone, the rigidity of the hanger has a very little angle of bent.

When it is bent more than that angle, it breaks apart.

Scientifically, when you bend a hanger, the solid molecules are forced to disengage from their position.

Consequently, they tend to produce heat.

And finally, that heat separates the molecules, breaking the hanger.

To clearly access this example, you would need a thermographic lens.


Even if you go with the steel bar or wooden hangers, they even break.

Steel bar hangers are certainly more elastic in nature compared to the wooden ones.

You must have noticed the rigidity in the hangers.

That is added to keep them in their shape.

Especially when you hang heavy clothes like coats and jackets.

Well, another scientific aspect added to this discussion is called Fatigue.



What fatigue is? Don’t start thinking about your job fatigue! In a way, the scientific fatigue, as well as the mental phenomena we link to fatigue, are quite similar.

The jobs that we do every day begin to fade in color.

And they even turn monotonous after some time.

The ultimate result is that employees start feeling tired even at the start of the day.

This is called fatigue.


Now take an example of a slingshot.

If you pull a slingshot lower than its effective angle, it won’t throw the pebble far enough.

If you stretch it to an effective level it would yield the expected result.

But for the extra perks, if you start pulling it more than its effective stretch, it may start tearing apart.

And on some point, it will snip.

That is fatigue.

Same goes with the clothes hangers.

If you hang a skirt on a coat hanger, everything would stay cool.

In a way, the hanger would start feeling that it is on a beach vacation.

But if you hang a furry winter overcoat with a jersey stitched inside on a sleek steel rod that snaps every other second.

Then it may surely bend at the very first spot you hung it.

That is another example of fatigue.