How to Take Care of Hats

How to Take Care of Felt Hats

Hats made of felt, velour or velvet are not recommended to be worn in the rainy, wet weather as it can cause a deformation of the item. In case you have to wear your felt hat in the rainy weather, you had better take your umbrella in order to prevent your hat from being heavily soaked and thus prolong its life. However, if your hat still got wet or moist, you should not dry it by hanging it on a peg. The best way to get a felt hat dry is to stuff it with crumpled newsprint or blotting paper and leave it on a shelf in a dry and warm place. Shortly before the hat gets completely dry, it is necessary to go over the felt with a soft brush, doing it with the nap.

Felt headgear should be kept in hard cardboard boxes in order to preserve the shape of the item. Before you put your hat in a wardrobe to store it, you need to clean it from dust and stains. Slight dust pollution can be easily removed with a soft brush by making whisking movements with the nap. If your hat has fat or grease stains, you can remove them using a clean wad of cotton wool moistened with petrol. Worn or creased nap can be removed if you slightly rub these shiny and rumpled spots with a stale crust of bread or fine grit sandpaper. You can use another method for an item with a complex shape, namely sprinkle it with salt and then wipe it with a soft brush.
Light felt hats can be cleaned with a stale piece of white bread.

How to Take Care of Straw Hats

If light-coloured straw hats are very dirty, they should be cleaned with a small brush using warm soapy water. Wash the soap off with clean water, and wipe the hat with a white piece of cloth or a towel. Then moisten the hat evenly with hydrogen peroxide, dry it, and press it through a white cloth with a warm iron. A straw hat turned yellow can be lightened a bit if you cut the yellow part of the peel (the rind) off half a lemon and use it to wipe the whole surface of the hat. Leave the hat like this for 30 or 40 minutes, then wash it with a brush dipped in warm water, dry it with a towel, and thoroughly press it through a dry white cloth with a warm iron. Instead of a lemon, you can apply the mixture of 2 parts of hydrogen peroxide and 2 parts of ammonia spirit.

If your hat has a very dirty section or stain that seems hard to remove, do not risk doing it on your own but entrust a professional with the task of cleaning your hat and restoring its shape. When headgear gets cleaned by experts, they take into account not only the appearance and intensity of dirt but also what type of material the hat is made of, how long it has been dirty, whether the stains are uneven. Do not use any stain remover, because there is a high possibility that some components of the stain remover will damage the item, influence the uniformity of its colour, and leave stroke marks.

In any case, there is only one way to keep your favourite hat looking the way it did when you bought it: you should treat it with care.


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