In this article, I’ll go over 9 dry cleaning tips and hacks that you may apply on clothing that needs a little extra attention.
How much do you believe you spend per year on dry cleaning?
The perceived cost of what it will take to maintain those clothes is a major concern for those who want to wear fancier clothing.
Spending hundreds, if not thousands of dollars on having your suits and shirts cleaned is a bit of a status symbol at huge corporations like Goldman Sachs.
The average American household will spend $500 on it.
It’s a crucial element of keeping your clothing in good shape, and you can’t always avoid it.
Wool, silk, and other natural fabrics that aren’t in close contact with the skin, on the other hand, have a lot of self-cleaning capabilities.
In many circumstances, this will eliminate the need for dry cleaning. For instance, the antibacterial lanolin oils present in wool.
Dry cleaning can harm the dye and weave of your clothing, as well as cause long-term damage of your garment.
This means that dry cleaning should only be used as a last resort, such as for a particularly foul smell, a stain, or a deformed jacket.
Dry Cleaning Tips and Hacks
I’ve compiled a list of nine dry cleaning tips and hacks to help you spend less time and money at the cleaners and more time doing activities you enjoy.
Begin To treat Stains Instantly
Begin treating stains as soon as they appear. If you’re eating in a fine jacket and a drop of mustard gets on your collar, don’t wait to take it to the dry cleaner. .
Begin removing the stain as soon as possible.
Here are a few methods to start dealing with it if you’re out and about.
Scrape off as much of the food or sauce off the garment as you can with a clean utensil.
Blot the stain with a little club soda, being careful not to crush or rub the stain into the fabric.
You can also blot up as much of the food or sauce as possible with plain white bread.
Please note that this must be ordinary white bread with no fat; pastries or focaccia will exacerbate the condition.
Keep a stain remover wipe in your wallet for those unexpected situations. Blot lightly and resist the urge to rub too vigorously.
Even if you can’t completely remove the stain, you’ve made a decent start, and the dry cleaner will have an easier job removing the remaining stain.
Make Use of a Clothes Brush
Use a spot-cleaning clothes brush.
Dust, food, and other debris can find their way onto and into the garments we wear as we go about our daily lives, especially in fibers like those found in a suit.
This filth will accumulate over time and seep through the fabric. In the future, this will provide potential food or odors for moths to take advantage of.
The bristles of a clothes brush composed of things like horse hair will take out the dirt and particles without damaging the fabric.
This should be done once every few wears to keep the garment from becoming dirty.
If you only stained a tiny area, blot the stain with water and a small cloth. If the stain continues, dab a small amount of stain remover on it and gently press it.
Too much of this can ruin the weave, so don’t spray it directly.
Do a Spot Test on Silk
A spot test is an excellent trick to ensure if the fabric is strong enough before you try dry cleaning a silk garment yourself. Place a tiny amount of water on the part of the garment that won’t be seen with the detergent you’re using, such as the back blade of the tie.
If this trick does not work, make sure you can live with a minor blemish. After that, use a cotton swab to clean the area.
If part of the clothing’s dye leaks onto the swab, it’s better to take it to a dry cleaner or proceed with caution if you try to spot clean it yourself.
If it doesn’t bleed, you can be a little rougher with hand washing or a gentle cycle in the machine.
Using Ice Cubes to Dry Garments
Is there something stuffed in the back of the closet? Trying to fit everything into a suitcase? You can avoid going to the dry cleaner and hand steaming your garments if you have a dryer and some ice cubes on standby.
The ice cubes will progressively melt due to the warm air from the dryer, resulting in steam. To smooth out creases, do this on dry clothes for the shortest period possible.
3 Ways to Get Rid of Odors
Before taking your clothes to the dry cleaners, try one of these strategies to get rid of odors.
1. Before determining whether or not to dry clean your suits, let them hang outside for a few days. If your suit or sport coat stinks like a wet dog, try keeping it outside for a few hours on a sunny day with a light wind.
UV rays from the sun operate as a natural bacteria killer. This will also aid in the activation of the oils found in wool. The breeze will also aid in the removal of any leftover contaminants that may be clinging to the garment.
This will come in handy when attempting to erase the odor of tobacco from a jacket. If you’ve been to a smoky pub, you’ll notice that the smell lingers on your clothes.
2. If the smell is extremely strong, use a fan to spray a mist of vodka onto the garment to eradicate any remaining aromas.
Any moderate odors that may be clinging to the garment should be removed by repeating this method one to three times. This is also an excellent method for deodorizing old clothing that has a particular odor.
3. Putting stinking clothes in the freezer overnight has been shown to significantly lessen the smell of smoke and other unpleasant odors.
Iron Your Suits With a Pressing Cloth
While shirts are simple to iron, suits are more difficult. Suits have a third layer of inner lining or canvassing that, if not handled properly, can bubble up or wrinkle.
You can also burn the suit’s wool if you iron it directly on the fabric.
If done wrong, pressing like this can cause the fabric to become abnormally glossy and distorted.
A pressing cloth protects the suit from the iron by adding a layer of protection. This allows the user to iron the suit’s body without worrying about the fabric burning or the seams unraveling.
Lemon Juice and Vinegar
In a tub, wash a suit with lemon juice and vinegar. This trick can work wonderfully as a last resort if you have an old and strong stain or smell on a suit or in a garment that hasn’t been cleaned in a long time.
Fill the tub halfway with cold water and immerse the suit in it. After that, you’ll want to add a teaspoon of lemon juice or vinegar to the water.
This is due to the acidic qualities’ ability to penetrate the wool fibers and eliminate any bacteria that may have accumulated along the way.
Allow for a half-hour soak by pressing down on the troublesome areas. Drain the water and press the fabric to remove any excess water when you return.
When you see how much dirt comes out of your clothes, you may never look at them the same way again.
After that, place your garment on a firm hanger to dry before brushing it to bring it back to excellent condition.
As previously indicated, you can perform this outside for optimum effect.
Dry Cleaning Off-Season Twice a Year
Schedule a twice-yearly off-season dry cleaning run if dry cleaning is unavoidable.
Some items may require or desire dry cleaning, although they are frequently cleaned unclean until we are ready to wear them.
Take, for example, dirty winter jackets that you notice only when it becomes cold outdoors.
The trick is to plan ahead of time so that you are prepared when you require them. Gather your tweed jackets and overcoats over the summer months and bring them in to be cleaned so they’ll be ready for fall when it arrives, or do it as the season draws to a close.
The same can be said for your lightweight shirts and linen suits. Bring them in as soon as the first snowfall occurs, or in January.
Avoid Stains on Your garments
Avoid sweating excessively or getting them dirty in the first place.
While all of these suggestions and procedures can help remove dirt and odors from garments that should be dry cleaned, the best defense is to avoid it altogether.
While you shouldn’t be unduly concerned or worried when wearing dress clothes, if you have a habit of becoming dirty, avoiding specific foods or possibly drinking wine while wearing certain garments may be your best defense.
It’s excellent to have a set of clothes made from some workhorse material, possibly something a little older, to wear so that you don’t spoil your favorite shirt or your best suit.
Quality clothing is an investment, and there’s no shame in hedging your bets if you don’t think a risky circumstance is worth the risk.