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Can you Dry Clean Silk?

Certain fabrics on the market offer a luxurious feel and look because of their properties. One of these glamorous fabrics is silk. It is smooth, lightweight, and soft to the touch while at the same time being strong and breathable. Dry cleaning silk is often believed to be the safest way of maintaining its high quality and durability.

Silk can be dry cleaned to ensure that the expensive and glamorous item does not get ruined by senseless washing. Certain silk garments are labeled to be only dry cleaned and these instructions should be strictly followed

Key Takeaways

  • Silk is an expensive and shiny fabric that requires gentle care and maintenance.
  • Although certain silk garments may be labeled to be only dry cleaned, gentle washing by hand is also completely safe.
  • Silk items labeled as dry-clean-only should be taken to the dry cleaners to ensure the best and most professional cleaning outcome for your valuable pieces

The Production and Properties of Silk Fabric

Silk has been produced for many years and is known to be one of the most valuable and lustrous fabrics. The production process of silk begins with silkworms spinning their cocoon. When this is done, the long silk threads are extracted, washed, and cleaned. The silk threads are then dyed using natural dyes such as plant leaves. Next, they are soaked in water in order to absorb the color, they are spun through a wheel and eventually woven. Manufacturers these days use artificial dyes to produce a variety of different colors. The production of silk is a long and complicated process but the outcome is successful.

Silk is available on the market in a variety of textures and styles. It is known to be a durable fabric because it is moisture-absorbent. Although it may seem delicate and fragile, silk is one of the strongest fabrics. Its strength comes from the long threads that are used in the production of silk. Because of the lengthy and delicate production process, silk is an expensive fabric.

It requires great care and treatment because it can be damaged due to the use of deodorants, bleach, and perfumes. The silk fabric is breathable, moisture-absorbent, and shiny. However, if it is not well taken care of it may lose its shape. Using excessive water weakens the silk fabric and being exposed to light leads to it being more sensitive. Maintaining the quality of silk is very important in order to ensure its longevity.

How to Dry Clean Silk

The way that silk is treated and cleaned ultimately leads to an increase in its lifespan. Machine washing silk is possible, but not recommended because it can be harsh on the fabric and eventually damage it. The majority of people prefer hand washing their silk items because it is believed to be more effective and gentle in comparison to machine washing. However, dry cleaning silk is one of the safest ways to properly take care of it.

While certain items of silk are labeled to be dry cleaned because of the manufacturers’ preference, there are also items labeled dry-clean-only. These items should be taken care of as it is recommended to eliminate the risk of being ruined. Using dry cleaning services to cleanse silk items is the most common method people use. Dry cleaners use specific techniques and products to make sure that your silk garments retain their shiny look and original color. Their ultimate goal is to return your item looking sharp and fresh. However, before you decide to visit the dry cleaning services, make sure that their work is professional. Applying low-quality cleaning products may cause your silk item to shrink and lose its shape. Dry cleaning silk is worth the time, effort, and money put into it only if it is done properly.

Silk-care Tips & Tricks

Buying silk pieces is a true investment for everyone who wants to look expensive and glamorous. In order for it to last a long time, there are some things you should keep in mind:

  1. If you cannot afford dry cleaning, try to hand wash your silk garment at home. To test if the particular item can be hand washed, start by washing a small area of your item and if it stains or loses its color, the only way is to get it dry cleaned. If there is no damage visible on the small area of the washed garment, use a gentle detergent and cold water. Make sure you don’t wash it for too long and rinse it with clean and cool water. Leave it to air dry laying on a flat surface.
  2. Avoid scrubbing harshly while removing stains from silk clothing. Gently brush the stains in circular motions.
  3. When ironing silk, use a low heat setting.  Ironing the backside of the silk item is the best way to do it, you can even place a cloth over it to avoid applying direct heat to the item. Apart from ironing, many people also use steaming to get the wrinkles out of silk clothing. Steaming eliminates the possibility of damaging silk in any way possible.

Frequently asked questions

Can you dry clean 100% silk?

High-quality silk pieces of clothing, pillow covers, and bed sheets can be dry cleaned, thus making sure that they stay fresh and clean without damaging them and risking the possibility of the items shrinking.

Why is there a dry-clean-only label on certain silk items?

Oftentimes, manufacturers recommend that the silk item should be only dry cleaned on the label to avoid criticism and complaints from the customers. However, this label should be taken seriously and utilized to avoid value impairment of the silk items.

Does silk require professional dry cleaning?

Dry cleaners have the experience and knowledge needed to successfully remove any stains from your silk clothing and safely complete the cleaning process. It is important to trust your professional cleaner’s ability to execute proper care of your silk pieces.

Final Words

Wearing high-quality pieces offers a comfortable feel on the skin as well as breathability. However, nothing lasts forever if it is not properly cared for and maintained. When it comes to keeping silk garments fresh, professional dry cleaning does wonder and it also maintains the quality of the items.

Further Reading

Since you are here, carry on and read other blogs of ours, like an interesting comparison between Cotton and Linen, while another includes all the sheer fabric types.

There’s also comparison of micromodal vs modal, and a great comparison of sewing machines, Singer 4423 and 4452.