How to Wash a Winter Coat? – Useful Tips for Wool, Down and Faux Fur!

by Stephanie Yankova

When was the last time you washed your coat? If you can’t recall, it’s probably time for you to give it a good deep clean. I understand why you can feel somewhat restricted – down, wool or faux fur are not like the textiles we’re used to popping in the washing machine on a daily. Don’t worry, we’ll show you a couple of useful tips on how to wash a winter coat that will save both your time and money! 

How to Wash a Winter Coat: Everything You Need to Know

how to wash winter coat different fabrics guide

If you’re unsure how to properly wash your coat, the first thing you need to do is take a look at the care label. It will show you whether the coat can be washed in the washing machine at home, or it needs to be taken to a dry cleaner. If it’s safe to handle the coat at home, you must choose the cleaning products you use carefully, as each fabric’s requirements are different. Some are safe to be washed with a regular detergent, while others shouldn’t even come into contact with water and only require a soft brush (such as suede, for example).

How often should you wash your trench coat or overcoat? If you wear them every day, or they’re a part of your weekly rotation, they will require a more frequent wash. We suggest you give them a deep clean at least two times over the course of the season.

Important: Never wash real fur coats on your own! You must have them treated by a professional cleaner. The same applies to suede and genuine leather coats.

On the other hand, faux fur, vinyl, waterproof fabrics, polyester, and down are very easy to clean at home.

As soon as you learn the proper cleaning methods for each fabric, their maintenance will feel like child’s play! Read on to learn simple tips and tricks that will help keep your coats looking fresh and clean!

How to Wash a Wool Coat

how to wash a wool coat tips tricks

Wool is a natural fabric that’s woven from sheep or goat’s wool and can easily get deformed if you wash it in water. This is why dry cleaning is a better option and is recommended for almost all wool overcoats. However, don’t forget to check the care labels first, as certain wool blends are suitable for at-home washing machines. If that’s the case, don’t forget to use a gentle wool detergent and wash at a low temperature and at the lowest spin speed. Follow the steps below to ensure a deep and thorough clean:

Treat the Stains

Use a bowl or a spray bottle to mix together a drop of liquid detergent with cold water until you get a homogenous soapy solution. Apply it to the stained area while keeping the rest of the garment as dry as possible. Gently rub the solution into the fabric with your fingers. Do NOT scrub! Leave the coat to air dry in a well-ventilated area.

Set the Right Water Cycle & Temperature

Set the washing cycle to wool or delicate and the water temperature to cool or cold (30 °C). Adjust the spin speed to the lowest possible in order to reduce stretching. Place the coat in a large mesh bag, or a pillowcase.

Important: NEVER use warm or hot water, nor a tumble dryer for wool coats, trench coats, or any wool clothing for that matter. The heat will cause the natural fibers to bind together more tightly, and as a result, the garment will shrink.

Leave the Coat to Air Dry

Once the wash cycle is finished, remove the coat from the mesh bag or pillowcase and leave it to air dry. If you feel like the coat has absorbed a lot of water you can lay it on a flat surface on top of a towel that will absorb the excess water and speed up the drying process.

Read also: How to Shrink a Sweater from Wool, Cotton, Cashmere or Polyester?

How to Wash a Down Winter Coat

washing a down winter coat correctly

Down is the soft coating found under the feathers of ducks and geese. It is incredibly lightweight and warm, which makes it a perfect filler for puffer jackets. In order to make these coats look good and last longer you have to keep the down clean and dry. If you don’t take proper care of it, it can clump together, which will cause your jacket to lose its original puffiness. When washing down coats at home you must use a special detergent. However before you proceed to do anything, read the care label to make sure that the outer fabric is suitable for a washing machine.

How to Wash a Faux Fur Coat

how to wash faux fur coat step by step guide

As we mentioned many times above, the first and most important step is to read the care label! Faux fur is a synthetic fiber, which in most cases is washable. However, the lining and other structural components of the coat may not be. If you don’t want to take any risks, the best thing to do is to wash it by hand.

Important: NEVER put a faux fur coat in the dryer. The high temperature can melt the fibers, and there is no way to reverse the damages.

Here’s how to properly care for it:

  1. Depending on the size of the coat, fill a bathtub or a laver with cold water and add a few drops of detergent to it.
  2. Place the coat in the water and make sure that it’s completely soaked. Swirl it in the soapy water for no more than 10–15 minutes.
  3. Lift it out of the water and carefully squeeze out as much of the water as you can. Then, rinse it thoroughly to remove any soapy residue.
  4. Wrap the coat in a thick towel to speed up the drying process.
  5. Use an indoor drying rack and lay the faux fur coat flat on it. If you don’t have one, you can use a hanger and hang it somewhere to air dry. Avoid direct sunlight. Keep in mind that it may take between 24 and 48 hours before it is ready to wear!

Tip: Finish off by gently brushing the faux fur coat using a soft bristle brush.

Read also: How to Store Coats in a Small Space: The Ultimate Organizing Guide

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