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Best Way to Clean Wool Clothing

What’s the best way to clean wool clothing?

The weather’s cooling and it’s likely time to pull out your wool clothing. The soft and durable fabric is inviting but you may be reluctant to wear it if you’re unsure how to clean it. Wool is a difficult fabric to care for properly. Some wool can be hand-washed with mild soap and cold water, but it’s best to get wool suits, sweaters and other clothing dry cleaned to keep the shape and sharp look of the item.

Ironing wool is also difficult. It requires low heat and steam, since you can’t iron wool while it’s dry. Therefore, ironing can be ineffective on some pieces of clothing, like a jacket with a liner. Again, your best option is to dry clean all wool clothing to get the most use of it.

How Much Is Too Much?

Dry cleaning can be hard on fabrics so it’s important not to over-clean wool suits or sweaters. However, you should definitely send clothing to the dry cleaners whenever there is a stain on the fabric. Dry cleaning can be harsh on buttons and zippers so clothing with these should be cleaned as infrequently as possible.

Dry clean whenever the suit, sweater or pants are dirty beyond brushing and airing out. This could be every few weeks or every few months depending on how frequently you wear the clothing. Often people sweat more above the waist than below, so jackets and shirts may need cleaning more frequently than pants or skirts.

Sometimes a good steam can reduce wrinkles and remove odors. You can opt to send your pants and suits out to be pressed or steamed rather than fully dry cleaned.