Edward Pritchard is a Manager at Pritchards, a retailer of designer clothing for men. Here, he shares his expert tips for caring and maintaining your suits.
There’s nothing quite as sharp, sophisticated, and elegant as a well-fitted suit. But, to keep your favourite suit looking its best, you’ll have to do more than just throw it in the washing machine every now and then. The way you clean, iron, and store it will have an effect on both the look of your suit and its overall lifespan, so it’s essential that you get it right.
The principles of proper suit care are something that all stylish men should know about, especially if you regularly wear one to work. Just read on to learn how to keep your suits looking sharp for longer.
Store Your Suit With Care
There’s nothing more frustrating than taking your favourite suit out of the wardrobe only to discover it’s been creased on the hanger.
Your suits will probably spend more time hanging in your wardrobe than they will on your body, so you’ll need to make sure they’re stored in a way which will prevent creasing and help them keep their shape.
The fabric of your suit needs to air out after wear, so it should have plenty of space to hang — that means no more squeezing your suits in between your other clothes in an overstuffed wardrobe.
When it comes to keeping your blazers in top condition, there’s nothing more important than proper shoulder support:
- Thin or flimsy coat hangers can create a crease in the shoulders of your jacket, and can even misshape the padding.
- Wide hangers with rounded edges will imitate the natural shape of your shoulders, meaning your jacket stays in perfect shape while in storage.
This selection of wooden suit and jacket hangers from Hanger Project includes designs in a variety of widths, so you can be sure your suits are getting the right shoulder support when you’re not wearing them.
Brush Your Suit Regularly
Suits will absorb particles of dust and dirt during everyday wear.
When this debris builds up, it can give your suit a dusty look and, if left for too long, it could even damage the fabric, so it’s best to clean your suit with a clothes brush every time you wear it.
Brushing your suit will gently remove any dirt and dust particles, as well as lint and hair. Doing this every time you wear your suit can also help to prevent ‘bobbling’, which is where small raised knots of thread appear in the fabric.
Brushing is easy to do, and it will only take a minute or two, so it’s well worth it in the long run. Just make sure you use a specialised suit brush, as multipurpose designs will be much too coarse for delicate suit fabrics, like wool.
To find more advice on cleaning every kind of suit fabric, just check out this guide to using a clothes brush on The Butler’s Closet.
Avoid Excessive Dry-Cleaning & Ironing
There’s no need to dry clean your suit every time it needs washing — in fact, this could actually do more harm than good.
The powerful chemicals used during the dry-cleaning process can damage the fibres of your suit, so it’s best to keep dry-cleaning as a last resort for serious stains.
Investing in a handheld steam cleaner will allow you to wash stains at home, and you’ll also save money on your dry-cleaning bill in the long run.
The same goes for excessive ironing, which can also be damaging. Everyone likes the look of a sharp, crease-free suit, but over-ironing can burn the fibres, giving the material an unwanted sheen.
If your suit is crumpled and tired looking, you’ll want to use a handheld steamer to remove creases instead. This will refresh the look of your suit without damaging the fabric, and it’s quicker and easier than ironing, too.
Without the proper care, your suits can easily become damaged and out of shape, but a bit of basic maintenance can make a big difference. As long as you brush, steam, and hang your suits properly, your suits should stay in great condition for longer, and you could save money on your dry-cleaning bill, too.