As you start the New Year 2022, there are many challenges ahead. Here are six tips shared by dry cleaning professionals.
Often garments or linens get sent to the cleaners as a last resort. The owner has done things that prevent stains from being removed. Never rub stains. Blot them. Don’t iron stained or soiled clothes. The iron literally cements the stain.
Stains don’t just come from the kitchen or the wine rack. Alcohol in sprays, perfumes, hair spray, and aerosol deodorants can fade, discolour, or stain your garments. Moisturizers, makeup, and sunscreen may be good for your skin. However, they are all potentially staining for your clothes. Apply before donning your garment and slip it on carefully.
Why turn to dry cleaning when stains are involved? The dry cleaning process—as the name suggests—makes use of powerful, non-water solutions. These rid your garments of those stubborn, set-in stains that water can actually set.
Dry cleaning specialists suggest that you blot the stain and get the garment to the dry cleaners as soon as possible. When you arrive, discuss the stains and their origin with the stain removal professionals. Most of us think of stains in terms of red wine or coffee spills. Make sure to point out light-colored or invisible spills. These might come from pop, fruit juice, or white wine. While these may appear innocent, they can discolor that sparkly party outfit.
Using the stain removal knowledge of professional dry cleaners has saved households thousands of dollars.
Never put a garment away without cleaning it first—no matter how few times you have worn it. When storing out-of-season clothing, be sure to protect those garments from prolonged exposure to sunlight or strong artificial lights. Store them in a cool, dark place. Spray perfume and hairspray on before you get dressed. Always store clothing in a temperature-controlled environment like an extra closet or under your bed.
Perhaps you bought a clever mix-and-match outfit for its versatility. It probably has a skirt, pants, a vest, a jacket, a top or two, and perhaps even a scarf. No matter how many times you have worn each piece, be sure to send all the matching pieces of that outfit together to the cleaners. Here’s why: Dry cleaning and washing can change the texture and/or the color of the pieces. You don’t want some to differ from the others.
Leather may look durable but it requires special handling. Gone are the days when cowboys lived in their chaps and their leather jackets. Whether the garment is leather or suede, it should hang on a padded hanger so it will retain its shape.
To keep suede clothes tidy between dry cleaning, use a suede brush. Go over the entire surface from time to time to prevent dirt and dust from accumulating.
Water spills on suede should be blotted immediately with a paper towel. Don’t press the paper towel. Let dry afterwards. If the stain is from tea, coffee, or juice, place one paper towel on top of the stain. Add another paper towel. Press the stained part towards the paper towel. This helps soak up the liquid faster.
Business Insider notes that the average household spends about $500 a year on dry cleaning. However, dry cleaning can actually save you money. Dry cleaning extends the life your clothing. It reduces the wear and tear caused by a washing machine. Dry cleaned garments are perfectly cleaned and pressed. They rarely shrink or stretch if they are dry cleaned. Typically, you would not dry clean washable garments. Dry cleaning is used on fabrics not built to withstand the rigors of the washer and dryer.
There is a myth that you should wear a garment as often as possible before washing or dry cleaning it. The problem is that sweat produces ammonia. It can do serious damage staining or discoloring the garment if it is not cleaned immediately. Silks are especially damaged by excessive perspiration.
There is a belief that dry cleaning is hard on colors. However dry cleaning preserves color over machine washing. There is also the belief that dry cleaning solvent makes clothes smell like embalming fluid. If this is true, find a new cleaner! That chemical smell means your cleaner didn’t wait long enough and the solvent is still in your clothes.
With these six dry cleaning tips and tricks from the professionals, you are well on your way to a closet full of clean, pressed, and ready-to-wear clothes.