What is the best method for cleaning wool and mohair pullover hats? It’s a tough question with several answers, some answers may be good and some not so good. But, the good news is that with this post, you are covered. When it comes to handling and cleaning such durable yet delicate fabrics such as wool and mohair, it is always best to take great care.
Wool is one of the oldest textile fibers used by humans. The term wool is generally used to describe fiber obtained from sheep or lambs. Legally the hair of a few other animals can also be called wool because its qualities are similar to sheep’s wool.
Fiber from animals such as llama, alpaca, camel, vicuña, Angora goat, and Cashmere goat can be labeled as wool, although they can also be labeled by their fiber names.
Woolen caps and hats do not just complement our clothes but, they are used to cover and warm the head. Quality wool caps and hats are not just soft but skin-friendly. Their stretchability allows the cap to fit the head snugly and regain its shape when taken off. Trendy woolen caps are a great fashion statement.
Washing of a woolen cap, however, is not what you can easily classify as simple. Hot water or strong detergents should not be used for woolen garments or caps. No twisting, wringing, or drying in the hot sun as well. Woolen materials should be treated softly.
Best Method of Handwashing for Woollen Hats
• Fill a bowl with cold water— Don’t ever use hot water as that will ruin the hat.
• Add a small amount of mild, non-bleach laundry detergent (about a teaspoon) preferably Woolite.
• Spot test the hat by first soaking a small part of it that is unnoticeable for a few minutes before you dunk the entire hat in the cool water. If the color doesn’t bleed or the fabric doesn’t seem damaged in any way, you are free to continue.
• Gently brush away any stains with a soft-bristled brush like a felt hat brush or a toothbrush and allow it to sit for at least 15 minutes beforehand washing
• Once that’s done, submerge the entire hat in the bowl. Usually, a 30-minute soak is enough, but you can soak it for a few hours if need be. Just ensure that you check on it at least every hour.
• Remove the hat from the soapy water and rinse in cold water to remove any leftover detergent
• Squeeze very gently to remove excess water.
• Place the hat on a clean towel and pat it down. Don’t ever wring or twist your hat, as it will ruin the shape.
• Air-dry the hat in a clean spot away from direct sunlight.
Best Method of Machine Washing a Wool Hat
Using a washing machine to wash woolen materials is not advisable. But if you are willing to take the risk, the following steps can help you out.
• Set the washing machine to the gentle cycle. Anything stronger than that could destroy the wool fibers and ruin the hat.
• Use cold water
• Put the hat inside a garment bag before placing it in the washer to protect it from the machine’s agitation.
• Wash the hat with clothing in a similar color to avoid unwanted dyeing.
• Use a mild detergent such as Woolite that is specifically made for delicate fabrics such as silk and wool.
• Once the wash cycle is complete, gently soak up any excess water with a clean towel.
• Place the hat on a flat surface away from direct sunlight and allow it to air dry.
Dry Cleaning Without Having to go to the Dry Cleaners
• Using a soft brush such as an unused soft-bristled toothbrush or a hat brush specially designed for felt hats, start on one side of the hat and work your way around with short, gentle counter-clockwise strokes along the direction of the fabric’s nap to maintain the material’s integrity while removing dust, dirt, and lint.
• For any noticeably stained area of the hat, you can carefully dab it and spot clean with a slightly damp cloth or sponge (a makeup sponge can work). Make sure the cloth is not too wet.
• To remove oily stains caused by hair products, makeup, lotions, and similar products, sprinkle the stained area with cornstarch and leave for at least a couple of hours before brushing away.
• Repeat any or all of these steps as necessary.To finish the process, use a piece of masking tape or a lint roller to remove any lint that might linger after brushing.
How to Store Your Wool Hat Once It’s Clean
When you are not wearing your hat, the best way to store it is in a hatbox or on a clean surface in a cool, dry area with the crown down and stuffed with tissue. If a hat rack is your only option, choose one with a wide, flat hook shape that will not compromise the shape of the hat’s crown.
When storage space is an issue, you can stack hats with similarly-shaped crowns as long as they are not squished in any way.
Now, you can use those nice, warm, and comfy woolen hats without having to fret about cleaning it whenever it gets dirty.