How to clean a suit at home
How to Wash Suits
Suits add a sense of professionalism and class to your look, but they can’t be washed in standard laundry machines when they get dirty. If you don’t want to take your suit to a dry-cleaning service, you can easily take care of your suit at home so it looks clean. With a few simple tools, you’ll have a fresh looking suit to wear!
Brushing Your Suit
Buy a stiff-bristled suit brush.Suit brushes look similar to hairbrushes and are made from animal hair or synthetic materials. Look for a brush with stiff bristles, but not so coarse that they’ll damage the fabric on your suit.
- Suit brushes can be purchased online or in stores that sell suits.
Hang your suit or lay it flat.Find a thick and sturdy hanger to hold your suit jacket so it doesn’t deform the shoulders. Put your pants on another hanger. If you don’t have hangers for your suit, lay your suit out on your bed so it’s completely flat.
- Avoid using wire hangers since they could affect the shape of your suit.
Brush in short strokes from the shoulders to the bottom of your jacket.Hold the brush in your dominant hand and brush against the grain of your fabric. Work in small strokes from the top of your jacket so any dirt or dust brushes off. Go down the front side of your jacket first before flipping it around and brushing the back.
- If you notice a lot of dirt or dust on a particular area, go over it with the brush 2-3 times.
- Use a lint roller after you brush to pick up any loose dirt left on the fabric.
Work from the waist down to the cuffs of your pants legs.Start at the waistline and work your brush against the fabric’s grain. Focus on the areas that build up a lot of dirt and dust, such as your knees and the cuffs. Flip your trousers over and work on the backside, focusing on the seat of your pants with your brush.
- If you still notice dust or dirt, try brushing your pants with the grain of the fabric.
Cleaning Embedded Dirt
Mix 1 part white vinegar with 2 parts cold water in a bowl.Use 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of distilled white vinegar and 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of tap cold water to make a cleaning solution. Stir the liquids together thoroughly until they are combined.
- Make sure to use cold water since warm water may damage the fabric on your suit.
- You can try to only use water at first if you don’t want to use vinegar.
Soak a cloth in the solution.Completely dip a soft microfiber cloth in the cleaning solution so it’s completely saturated. Once your cloth is wet, wring it out so it’s damp to the touch but not dripping. Give the cloth a few shakes to get rid of any excess liquid still on the cloth.
- Microfiber cloths can be purchased at any cleaning supply store.
Rub the cloth against the grain of the fabric in short strokes.Focus on areas that are visibly soiled or accumulate a lot of dirt, such as the sleeves, leg cuffs, and seat of the pants. Work in 2–3 inches (5.1–7.6 cm) strokes to remove the dirt and dust. Don’t saturate the suit fabric completely.
- Test the cleaning solution in an inconspicuous spot on your suit to see how it affects the fabric.
Let the suit air dry completely.Hang the suit on a sturdy wooden hanger so it doesn’t crease or wrinkle. Keep the suit in a cool, dry place, such as an open closet or on the back of a door. Your suit should take between 30 minutes to an hour to dry completely.
- If your suit smells like vinegar once it’s dry, spritz some cologne or perfume on the suit to mask the scent.
Put a fabric attachment on the end of the steamer’s hose.Find a handheld or free-standing steam machine to use on your suit. Find the fabric attachment, which should look like a long rectangle. Push the attachment onto the end of the hose until it securely clicks.
- Steamers can be found at your local convenience stores or laundromats.
Fill the tank on a steam cleaner with water and turn it on.Locate the water tank on your steamer. Take it out of the machine and fill it with either cold or warm water. Put the water tank back into your steamer and turn it on so the water heats up.
- Use distilled water if you’re worried about any minerals or residue from your tap.
Put the steamer head on your suit and work from the top down.Once the water is heated, put the attachment directly on your suit near the shoulders. Pull the trigger on the steamer and move the attachment down the length of your suit. The warm steam will loosen the fabric and remove any wrinkles that may have formed. When you’re finished, let the suit air dry for 15-20 minutes
- Don’t use an iron on your suit since the direct heat could damage the fabric.
Using Shower Steam
Hang your suit in the bathroom while you take a long hot shower or bath. The air will fill with moisture and help steam your suit. Once you're finished, lay your suit flat and smooth it out with your hands before hanging it up again.
Steam your suit again if there are still wrinkles.You may still have wrinkles in areas such as the elbows and knees of your suit. If the suit has completely dried, run your steamer again focusing on the problem areas. Smooth out the area with your hands once you’ve finished steaming and let it air dry again for at least 15 minutes.
- If there are still wrinkles, try using a wrinkle-eliminating spray while the suit is hanging. You can find sprays in the laundry section of your local store.
- Avoid wearing the same suit multiple days in a row or else the fabric will start to deteriorate faster.
- Keep your suit in a suit bag while you’re not wearing it so it doesn’t get covered in dust.
Video: Suits & Blazers Dry Cleaning At Home.
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