Winter is the season of the wool hat. Not only is quality wool stylish and durable, but it’s also perfect for keeping your head warm all season long. But three months of exposure to snow and—heaven forbid—road salt can take a toll on any hat after a while.
But just because your hat is dirty doesn’t mean you should just throw it into the washing machine willy-nilly. This is especially true for shapely hats like fedoras and cowboy hats. Our four tips and tricks for cleaning a wool hat will help you keep your hat neat and stylish this winter.
Start With a Brush
Not every hat-related mess requires you to break out the detergent. If your hat has a sprinkling of dust or your cat’s fur has become stuck on it, your first move should be to brush it down.
You can start by gripping your hat by the corner of the brim to avoid disturbing the shape of its crown. Then, use a hat brush to take the dirt off gently. If you don’t have a hat brush, you can use an unused paintbrush. For pesky animal hair, wrap a piece of packing tape around your fingers and dab the outside of your hat.
Spot Clean Stains
If you’ve ever tried to wash your favorite Christmas sweater, you know that wool has a complicated relationship with water. Under certain circumstances, water can shrink a wool hat. So your best option is to spot clean any stains that may still linger after your brushing.
When you spot clean, you should avoid using water hotter than 65 degrees Fahrenheit so that your hat doesn’t shrink. Mix your water with mild, non-bleach laundry detergents, especially ones formulated for wool.
A Note on Soaking
In some cases, soaking a hat may be appropriate, especially if you’re using a wool beanie. Remember to use cool or warm but never hot water and soak it for 20 to 30 minutes. Gently massage stains but avoid agitating the water too much for the best results.
Clean the Sweatband Separately
The sweatband is there to take the brunt of the stains and moisture on your hat. Thus, it’s natural it may need a little extra attention when you’re finding tips and tricks to clean your wool hat.
Cleaning the sweatband follows many of the same steps as cleaning the rest of the hat. Only, you must be sure to put something between the band and the rest of the hat while you’re cleaning it, such as a paper towel. Then, flip the sweatband out while it’s drying.
Wool is king in the winter. And whether you’re looking for a men’s wool fedora hat or a lady’s cloche, Fashionable Hats has the perfect wool chapeaus to help you take on the season in style.