When To Dry Clean Your Suit – Do’s And Dont’s Expert Tips

Cleaning Tips

When To Dry Clean Your Suit - Do's And Dont's | Expert Tips

In the world of suits, it’s important to know when to take your clothes to the dry cleaner’s and when to try cleaning them at home. There’s a simple rule of thumb: if something gets on your suit that you don’t want to rub into the fabric, it’s best to have it dry cleaned. This includes stains like wine or oil that can leave a sheen or make the fabric stiff. But for everyday wear and tear, you can usually get away with spot cleaning, using a cold water or even just a damp cloth.

Avoid harsh chemicals. Not all cleaners are created equal, so it’s important to know what your dry cleaner uses. Some chemicals, like tetrachloroethylene, can be harmful to your health and to the environment. Look for a cleaner that uses eco-friendly detergents and processes, or consider using one of the new, eco-friendly dry cleaning alternatives that are now available.

For most suits, a good rule of thumb is to have them dry cleaned about once a month. If you wear your suit frequently, or if you spill something on it, you might need to have it cleaned more often. On the other hand, if you only wear your suit occasionally and it doesn’t get dirty, you can probably go longer between cleanings.

When To Dry Clean Your Suit – Do’s And Dont’s

When it comes to taking care of your suits, knowing when to dry clean them is crucial. Washing your suits too often can damage the fabric and decrease their lifespan, while not washing them enough can lead to unpleasant odors and stains that are harder to remove. In this article, we will provide you with some expert tips on when and how to dry clean your suits.


  • Follow the care instructions: Each suit is made from different fabrics and may have specific cleaning instructions. Make sure to read and follow the care label to avoid damaging your suits.
  • Rotate your suits: Wearing the same suit too frequently can cause it to lose its shape and wear out faster. Rotate your suits and give them time to rest between wears.
  • Dry clean when necessary: Only dry clean your suits when they are visibly dirty or have a strong odor. Over-cleaning can cause the fabric to fade and lose its luster.
  • Use a professional dry cleaner: It’s worth taking your suits to a professional dry cleaner who uses proper cleaning techniques and equipment. They have the expertise to handle different fabrics and ensure a thorough and safe cleaning process.
  • Consider steaming: If your suit only has minor wrinkles, steaming it can be a good alternative to dry cleaning. Steaming helps remove wrinkles without subjecting the garment to harsh chemicals.



  • Try pressing it yourself: Unless you have experience and the necessary tools, avoid pressing your suits yourself. Improper ironing techniques can damage the fabric or leave unwanted creases.
  • Ignore the cleaning FAQs: Many dry cleaners provide FAQs on their website or in-store. These FAQs address common questions and concerns about suit cleaning. Be sure to read and follow their recommendations.
  • Wait too long to clean: Don’t wait until your suit is heavily soiled or has stubborn stains before taking it to the dry cleaner. Prompt cleaning can prevent stains from setting in and preserve the fabric’s quality.
  • Forget to remove items from pockets: Before sending your suit for dry cleaning, always check and empty the pockets. Leaving items like pens or receipts can cause damage to the garment or even the cleaning machines.
  • Use wire hangers: Wire hangers can distort the shape of your suits and leave unwanted shoulder bumps. Invest in proper wooden or padded hangers to maintain the shape of your suits.

Following these do’s and dont’s will help you keep your suits looking sharp and prolong their lifespan. Remember to consider eco-friendly dry cleaning options and take care not to over-clean your suits. By following these tips, you can ensure that your suits always make a wow impression while also being mindful of the environment.

Expert Tips for Determining When to Dry Clean Your Suit

1. Rotate Your Suits

One of the best ways to extend the time between dry cleanings is to rotate your suits. By alternating the suits you wear, you reduce the frequency of cleaning each suit individually.

2. Spot Clean Small Stains

If you notice a small stain on your suit, try spot cleaning it yourself. Use a mild detergent mixed with cold water and gently dab the stain. Be careful not to rub the stain, as this may cause it to set further into the fabric.

3. Take a Closer Look

Before taking your suit to the dry cleaner, take a closer look at it. Look for any stains, rips, or loose threads that may need special attention. Make a note of these areas so you can point them out to the dry cleaner.

4. Read the Care Label

4. Read the Care Label

Always check the care label of your suit before deciding to wash it or take it to the dry cleaner. Some suits may be labeled as machine washable, in which case you can avoid dry cleaning costs. However, if the care label recommends dry cleaning, it’s best to follow the instructions to maintain the integrity of the suit.

5. Seek Professional Help for Stubborn Stains

If you have a stubborn stain on your suit that you can’t get rid of, it’s best to seek professional help. Professional dry cleaners have the expertise and tools to remove tough stains without damaging the fabric.

6. Avoid Over-Washing

Don’t be tempted to wash your suit too often. Over-washing can cause the fabric to lose its shape and color, as well as increase the risk of shrinkage. Unless your suit is visibly dirty or has a strong odor, it’s generally best to limit washing to when it’s absolutely necessary.

7. Hang Your Suit Properly

When you’re not wearing your suit, hang it properly on a wooden hanger to maintain its shape. Avoid overcrowding your closet, as this can lead to wrinkles and creases. If you’re traveling, use a garment bag to protect your suit from dust and wrinkles.

8. Use a Clothes Steamer

If your suit only has slight wrinkles, you can use a clothes steamer to remove them. The steam will help relax the fabric and smooth out any creases. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a clothes steamer.

9. Consider Eco-Friendly Alternatives

If you’re concerned about the environmental impact of dry cleaning chemicals, you can consider eco-friendly alternatives. Look for dry cleaners that use environmentally friendly solvents or opt for wet cleaning methods, which use water-based solutions to clean your suits.

10. Don’t Wait Too Long

While it’s important not to over-clean your suit, it’s equally important not to wait too long between cleanings. If your suit is visibly stained or has a strong odor, take it to the dry cleaner as soon as possible. Delaying could make it more difficult for the dry cleaner to effectively clean your suit.

In conclusion, determining when to dry clean your suit requires a careful evaluation of its condition and specific care instructions. Take the necessary steps to maintain your suit’s cleanliness and quality, and enjoy looking sharp for any occasion!

The Do’s of Dry Cleaning Your Suit

When it comes to dry cleaning your suit, there are some important do’s that you should keep in mind. Follow these guidelines to ensure your suit stays clean and fresh:

1. Determine the Frequency

1. Determine the Frequency

Firstly, determine how often your suit needs to be dry cleaned. In my opinion, suits should be dry cleaned once every three to six months if you wear them frequently. However, if you only wear your suit occasionally, you can have it professionally cleaned once a year.

2. Always Choose a Professional

When it comes to dry cleaning your suit, it’s always best to take it to a professional. They have the right knowledge and equipment to handle your suit properly, ensuring it looks its best and lasts longer. So, avoid cleaning it yourself with harsh chemicals.

3. Know What’s Best for Your Suit

Be aware of the type of dry cleaning solvents used by the professional. Tetrachloroethylene, also known as perchloroethylene, is the most commonly used solvent. Ask about the solvents and any eco-friendly options available to ensure your suit and the environment are both taken care of.

4. Separate Your Suit

Consider having your suit jacket and trousers cleaned separately. This will allow the professionals to focus on each item individually, ensuring they are cleaned and pressed to perfection.

5. Use Covers and Hangers

After your suit is cleaned, make sure to store it on a proper hanger and cover it with a garment bag or a breathable cover. This will protect your suit from dust, wrinkles, and any potential damage.

6. Reduce Pressing Times

Reducing the frequency of pressing can help extend the life of your suit. Generally, suits should be pressed once a month or once every two weeks, depending on your needs. Pressing too often can cause the fabric to wear out faster.

7. Follow the Basics

Lastly, always follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. These instructions are specific to your suit’s fabric and construction and should be followed for best results.

In summary, the do’s of dry cleaning your suit include determining the frequency, choosing a professional, knowing what’s best for your suit, separating your suit items, using covers and hangers, reducing pressing times, and following the basics. By following these guidelines, your suit will always look clean and sharp.

The Don’ts of Dry Cleaning Your Suit

  • Don’t take your suit to the dry cleaner too often. Over-dry cleaning can cause damage to the fabric and shorten the lifespan of your suit.
  • Don’t ask the dry cleaner to do a simple washing. Dry cleaning and washing are two different processes. Washing in water is not suitable for all suit fabrics.
  • Don’t use regular washing machines to clean your wool suits. The harsh conditions and agitation can damage the fabric and alter the shape of your suit.
  • Don’t dry clean your suits more than three times per year, unless they are heavily stained. Excessive dry cleaning can fade the color and dull the sheen of the fabric.
  • Don’t try to clean stained areas yourself without knowing what’s best for the fabric. Improper cleaning methods can cause further damage and make the stains more difficult to remove.
  • Don’t ignore the importance of rotating your suits. Wearing the same suit frequently can cause wear and tear in specific areas, leading to a shorter lifespan.
  • Don’t assume that all dry cleaners are the same. It is worth visiting a professional cleaner who specializes in suits to ensure proper care and maintain the quality of your suits.
  • Don’t quick dry your suits or iron them when they are still damp. This can cause shrinkage and damage the fabric. Always allow your suits to fully dry before wearing or ironing.
  • Don’t use hot water when cleaning your suits. Cold or lukewarm water is better for preserving the fabric and preventing shrinkage.
  • Don’t underestimate the expertise of professionals. Dry cleaning suits requires specialized knowledge and equipment to ensure the best results.
  • Don’t use a lot of detergent when cleaning your suits. Too much detergent can leave residue on the fabric and affect its appearance and texture.
  • Don’t forget to follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. Each fabric may have specific requirements for cleaning and care.
  • Don’t leave your suits in plastic bags for extended periods of time. This can create moisture and lead to mold or mildew growth.
  • Don’t store your suits in crowded spaces. Allow them to breathe and hang them properly to avoid wrinkles and creases.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions About Dry Cleaning Your Suit

When it comes to getting your suit cleaned, it’s important to ask questions, so you can ensure that it looks its best and lasts a long time. So, don’t be afraid to ask your dry cleaner any questions you may have. Here are some common FAQs to help you get started:

  1. When should I dry clean my suit?
    • As a general rule, you should dry clean your suit only when it really needs it. If there are visible stains or it has an unpleasant odor, it’s time to take it to the dry cleaner. But if it just needs a refresh, a simple steaming or pressing at home might be enough.
  2. Can I clean my suit at home myself?
    • While it’s possible to clean certain types of suits at home, like those made from wool or that have specific care instructions, it’s generally recommended to leave it to the professionals. Dry cleaners have the expertise and equipment to handle delicate fabrics and ensure a thorough cleaning without damaging the suit.
  3. What’s the right way to hang my suit?
    • Using a sturdy, wide hanger is the best way to maintain the shape of your suit. Avoid using wire hangers as they can cause shoulder dimples. Additionally, hang your suit in a well-ventilated area to allow it to air out and prevent odors.
  4. How frequently should I have my suit dry cleaned?
    • The frequency of dry cleaning your suit depends on how often you wear it and the environment in which you wear it. As a general guideline, you should aim for about once a month, but adjust accordingly based on your needs.
  5. Can’t I just spot clean my suit myself?
    • While spot cleaning can be effective for some stains, it’s important to be cautious. Harsh cleaning agents or scrubbing can damage the fabric and leave visible marks. It’s best to consult a professional dry cleaner to ensure the stain is properly removed without causing any harm to your suit.
  6. What’s the deal with using water to clean suits?
    • Most suits are not designed to be cleaned with water. Water can cause shrinkage, discoloration, and damage to the fabric. The dry cleaning process uses solvents to remove dirt and stains without the risk of water damage.
  7. Does dry cleaning extend the life of my suit?
    • Dry cleaning can help extend the life of your suit by removing dirt, oils, and stains that can degrade the fabric over time. However, excessive dry cleaning can also cause damage, so it’s essential to follow the care instructions and only have your suit cleaned when necessary.

Remember, asking questions about dry cleaning your suit is always worth it. The more you know about how to care for your suit, the longer it will look great and serve you well. So, don’t hesitate to reach out to your dry cleaner or look for reputable online resources to get the answers you need.

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