cocktail dresses

How to Clean and Care for Cocktail Dresses

Posted on August 7, 2019 by Steven Toltz

Wedding season is coming to a close, and it’s time to start putting away those cocktail dresses until next summer. With so many fabrics, embellishments, and styles, properly cleaning storing each of your dresses can be a huge headache. That’s why we’re sharing our best cleaning and storage tips for dresses.  Now, when you’re ready for your next event, your dress will be, too!

Cleaning Cocktail Dresses

A cocktail dress is an investment, and to keep it looking as beautiful as the day you bought it, you should really take it to a dry cleaner. They’ll be able to remove sweat and other stains that have leached into the fabric without damaging the dress. Dry cleaning uses a solvent that won’t fade the color, change the texture, or damage delicate fabrics. And, not only will good dry cleaners remove stains, but they’ll also press the dress without using a traditional iron to keep your dress looking as good as new without leaving any iron marks.

Dry cleaning uses a solvent that won’t fade the color, change the texture, or damage delicate fabrics.

If you’re really in a pinch and have to wash your dress at home, use the softest detergent you can, choose a delicate cycle, and line dries it. But, use caution: even the gentlest detergents, can damage delicate fabrics, like satin, or alter the texture and feel of the dress.

Storing Cocktail Dresses

You’ve taken your dress to the dry cleaner and it’s looking as good as new. Now, you’ll want to properly store your dress to keep it looking good. Here are our top storage tips for cocktail dresses:

 1. Invest in a quality hanger

You invested in a high-quality dress, so keep it looking great with a quality hanger. Opt for wood or foam hangers to help the shoulders keep their shape.

2. Protect it from the sun

If your closet has a window, avoid storing items in the sun’s rays. Prolonged exposure to sunlight, or even just the closet light, can cause your clothes to fade. If you can’t avoid hanging your clothes in sunlight, keep them safe by using a garment bag with plenty of ventilation.

3. Choose a cool place

If your dress has any materials like fur, leather, or vinyl, move them to a cooler area, like a basement. These materials are more susceptible to heat and can become dry and damaged if left in a sunny closet.

4. Use a non-plastic garment bag

Fabric, just like our skin, needs to breathe, and no item should be left in a plastic bag for months on end. Instead, opt for a breathable cloth garment bag with an opening at the top and bottom, like the ones Dependable Cleaners offers customers for free.

5. Give the Dress a Shape

If your dress has a lot of beading or embellishments, you’ll want to make sure it holds its shape even when it’s hanging up. That’s why most dry cleaners will stuff the dress with either a bodice or tissue paper. If you’re worried about your dress losing its form, you can stuff the bodice yourself using acid-free tissue paper.

Related Article: 3 Reasons to Dry Clean Clothes Before Storage

Now is the perfect time to clean and store your fanciest summer pieces.  Dependable Cleaners has been providing quality service and exceptional customer care for over 90 years. Find a dry cleaner near you today!