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How To Clean Suspenders How To Clean Suspenders

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How To Clean Suspenders

Written by: Lenka Tinsley

Discover the best cleaning methods for all types of suspenders. Keep your suspenders looking fresh and sharp with these easy-to-follow tips.

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Table of Contents


Suspenders, also known as braces, are a stylish accessory that can add a touch of vintage charm to any outfit. Whether you wear suspenders for fashion purposes or simply to keep your pants up, it’s important to keep them clean and well-maintained to extend their lifespan and ensure they always look their best.

However, cleaning suspenders can seem like a daunting task, especially if you’re unsure of the proper methods to use. But fear not! In this article, we’ll guide you through the step-by-step process of cleaning suspenders, so you can keep them looking fresh and ready to wear.

Before we dive into the cleaning process, it’s important to note that the method you choose will largely depend on the fabric type of your suspenders. Different fabrics may require different cleaning techniques to avoid damage or shrinkage, so be sure to assess the fabric type of your suspenders before proceeding.

Whether your suspenders are made of silk, cotton, polyester, or a blend of materials, we’ve got you covered. From spot cleaning to handwashing and even machine washing, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to effectively clean your suspenders without compromising their quality.

We’ll also discuss how to properly dry, iron, or steam your suspenders to ensure they maintain their shape and minimize wrinkles. And finally, we’ll share some valuable tips on storing your suspenders to keep them in great condition until you’re ready to wear them again.

So, if you’re ready to give your suspenders the care and attention they deserve, let’s dive into the step-by-step process of cleaning suspenders and get them looking their best.


Materials Needed

Cleaning your suspenders requires a few essential materials. Make sure you have the following items on hand before you begin:

  1. Mild detergent or laundry soap: Choose a gentle detergent that is suitable for the fabric type of your suspenders. Avoid using harsh detergents or bleach, as they can damage the material.
  2. Bucket or sink: You will need a container to soak the suspenders or handwash them.
  3. Clean cloths or soft-bristle brush: These will come in handy for spot cleaning and removing any stains on the suspenders.
  4. White vinegar (optional): White vinegar can be used as a natural stain remover and deodorizer. It works well for removing odors from suspenders.
  5. Iron or steamer: You may need a gentle heat source to remove wrinkles from the suspenders once they’re clean and dry. An iron or handheld steamer will do the trick.
  6. Hanger or drying rack: To dry your suspenders, you’ll need a hanger or drying rack to hang them up and allow them to air dry properly.

These materials are commonly found in most households or easily obtainable from local stores. Having them ready before you start cleaning your suspenders will ensure a smooth and efficient process.


Step 1: Assess the Fabric Type

Before you begin cleaning your suspenders, it’s crucial to determine the fabric type. Different fabrics require different cleaning methods to avoid damage or discoloration. Here are some common fabric types for suspenders and how to assess them:

  1. Silk: Silk suspenders are delicate and require extra care. To determine if your suspenders are made of silk, check the label or feel the fabric. Silk is known for its smooth and luxurious texture.
  2. Cotton: Cotton suspenders are durable and versatile. You can usually identify cotton by its softness and breathability. Check the label or inspect the fabric for a cotton texture.
  3. Polyester: Polyester suspenders are synthetic and often have a slight sheen. They are commonly used for their durability and easy maintenance.
  4. Blend: Some suspenders may be made of a blend of fabrics. Read the label or examine the fabric to determine the primary fabric composition.

Once you have identified the fabric type, it’s essential to follow the appropriate cleaning method to avoid damaging your suspenders. Silk suspenders, for example, may require handwashing, while polyester suspenders may be suitable for machine washing.

If you’re unsure about the fabric type or there is no label indicating the material, it’s best to err on the side of caution and choose a gentle cleaning method. Always prioritize the care and preservation of your suspenders to ensure they remain in excellent condition.

By assessing the fabric type of your suspenders, you’ll be able to determine the best cleaning method and ensure that your suspenders are cleaned safely and effectively.


Step 2: Preparing the Suspenders

Before you start cleaning your suspenders, it’s important to prepare them properly to ensure the best results. Follow these steps to prepare your suspenders:

  1. Remove any accessories: If your suspenders have any detachable accessories, such as clips or buttons, remove them. This will prevent them from getting damaged during the cleaning process and make it easier to clean the suspenders themselves.
  2. Fasten any buckles or clasps: If your suspenders have buckles or clasps, fasten them to prevent tangling or damage during washing.
  3. Close any Velcro: If your suspenders have Velcro closures, make sure to close them before washing. This will prevent the Velcro from snagging or damaging the suspenders or other clothing items in the wash.
  4. Spot clean any stains: Take a closer look at your suspenders and spot clean any visible stains or spills. Use a clean cloth or a soft-bristle brush and a mild detergent or stain remover to gently remove the stain without scrubbing too hard.

By following these preparation steps, you’ll ensure that your suspenders are ready for the cleaning process. Removing detachable accessories, fastening buckles or clasps, closing Velcro, and spot cleaning stains will help protect your suspenders and maintain their quality.

Now that your suspenders are prepared, you’re ready to move on to the actual cleaning process. Depending on the fabric type of your suspenders, different cleaning methods may be appropriate. We’ll cover these methods in the next few steps to help you choose the best approach for your suspender cleaning needs.


Step 3: Spot Cleaning

Spot cleaning is a useful technique for removing small stains or spills on your suspenders without washing the entire garment. Follow these steps for effective spot cleaning:

  1. Identify the stain: Examine the suspenders closely and identify the type of stain you’re dealing with. Common stains include food, ink, oil, or dirt.
  2. Blot the stain: If the stain is still fresh, blot it gently with a clean cloth or paper towel to absorb as much of the stain as possible. Avoid rubbing, as it can push the stain deeper into the fabric.
  3. Apply a mild detergent: If the stain persists, mix a small amount of mild detergent with water to create a solution. Apply the solution directly to the stain using a clean cloth or soft-bristle brush. Gently work the detergent into the stain, moving in a circular motion.
  4. Blot and rinse: After treating the stain with detergent, blot the area again to remove any excess moisture and detergent residue. Then, rinse the spot with clean water to remove any remaining soap.
  5. Allow to air dry: Once you’ve spot cleaned the stain, allow the suspenders to air dry completely before wearing or proceeding with further cleaning.

Spot cleaning is a quick and effective way to address small stains on your suspenders and prevent them from becoming more noticeable or difficult to remove. It’s important to treat the stain as soon as possible to increase the chances of successful spot cleaning.

However, keep in mind that spot cleaning may not be suitable for all types of stains or fabrics. For tougher stains or larger areas of soiling, you may need to proceed to the handwashing or machine wash method, which we will cover in the following steps.

Now that you’ve spot cleaned any visible stains on your suspenders, it’s time to move on to the next step: the handwashing method.


Step 4: Handwashing Method

The handwashing method is a gentle and effective way to clean your suspenders, especially if they are made of delicate fabrics like silk. Here’s how to handwash your suspenders:

  1. Fill a sink or bucket: Fill a sink or bucket with lukewarm water. Avoid using hot water, as it can damage the fabric.
  2. Add mild detergent: Add a small amount of mild detergent to the water and mix it gently until it’s well-dissolved. Use a detergent that is suitable for the fabric type of your suspenders.
  3. Submerge the suspenders: Place the suspenders into the soapy water and gently swirl them around to ensure they are fully submerged. Let them soak for a few minutes to loosen any dirt or grime.
  4. Gently scrub: Using your hands or a soft cloth, gently scrub the suspenders to remove any dirt or stains. Pay extra attention to areas that are more prone to dirt, such as the straps or clasps.
  5. Rinse with clean water: Once you’re done scrubbing, carefully drain the soapy water and refill the sink or bucket with clean water. Rinse the suspenders thoroughly to remove any remaining detergent.
  6. Remove excess water: After rinsing, gently squeeze the suspenders to remove excess water. Avoid twisting or wringing them, as this can cause stretching or damage to the fabric.
  7. Press out remaining water: Lay the suspenders flat on a clean and absorbent towel. Roll up the towel and apply gentle pressure to press out the remaining water, absorbing it into the towel.
  8. Air dry: Finally, hang your suspenders or lay them flat on a drying rack in a well-ventilated area. Allow them to air dry completely before wearing or storing them.

The handwashing method is recommended for delicate fabrics like silk, as it provides a gentler cleaning process compared to machine washing. It allows you to have more control over the cleaning process and minimizes the risk of damaging your suspenders.

However, keep in mind that handwashing may still be suitable for other fabric types, especially if they require extra care or have special embellishments that could be damaged in the washing machine. Assess the fabric type and care instructions before deciding on the appropriate cleaning method.

Now that you’ve learned the handwashing method, it’s time to explore the machine wash method for those suspenders that can withstand a more robust cleaning process.


Step 5: Machine Wash Method

If your suspenders are made of fabrics that can withstand machine washing, such as cotton or polyester, the machine wash method can be a time-saving option. Follow these steps to safely machine wash your suspenders:

  1. Check the care label: Before proceeding with machine washing, check the care label on your suspenders to ensure they are safe for machine washing. Look for any specific instructions or temperature recommendations.
  2. Fasten buckles or clasps: Fasten any buckles or clasps on your suspenders to prevent them from getting tangled or damaged during the wash cycle.
  3. Place suspenders in a mesh laundry bag: To protect your suspenders from snagging or tangling with other items in the wash, place them inside a mesh laundry bag.
  4. Add mild detergent: Add a small amount of mild detergent to the washing machine. Use a detergent that is suitable for the fabric type of your suspenders.
  5. Select a gentle cycle: Choose a gentle or delicate cycle on your washing machine to minimize agitation and reduce the risk of damage to your suspenders.
  6. Wash with like colors: If you are washing multiple items together, make sure they are similar in color to avoid any color bleeding or transfer.
  7. Avoid high spin speeds: Opt for a lower spin speed or skip the spin cycle altogether. High spin speeds can stretch or damage the elastic or straps of your suspenders.
  8. Air dry: Remove the suspenders from the washing machine once the cycle is complete and let them air dry. Avoid using the dryer, as it can cause shrinkage or excessive wrinkling.

Machine washing can be a convenient option to clean your suspenders efficiently. However, it’s essential to follow the care label instructions and take precautions to protect your suspenders during the wash cycle.

Remember, not all suspenders are suitable for machine washing. Always check the care label and assess the fabric type before deciding on the cleaning method.

Once your suspenders are clean and dry, it’s time to move on to the next step: ironing or steaming to remove any wrinkles and creases.


Step 6: Drying the Suspenders

After cleaning your suspenders, it’s important to properly dry them to ensure they retain their shape and avoid any potential damage. Here are the recommended steps for drying your suspenders:

  1. Gently squeeze out excess water: If your suspenders are still wet after washing, gently squeeze them to remove any excess water. Avoid twisting or wringing them, as this can cause stretching or damage.
  2. Hang them up: Hang your suspenders on a hanger or drying rack in a well-ventilated area. Make sure they are spread out evenly to allow air circulation.
  3. Avoid direct sunlight: While drying, avoid placing the suspenders in direct sunlight. Sunlight can fade colors and damage the fabric over time.
  4. Allow sufficient drying time: Suspenders may take a few hours or even overnight to air dry completely, depending on the fabric type and thickness. Be patient and allow sufficient drying time to avoid any dampness that could lead to musty odors.

It’s important to note that some suspender materials, such as silk, may be more delicate and require additional care during drying. In such cases, you can lay the suspenders flat on a clean towel to air dry, ensuring they retain their original shape.

Avoid using a clothes dryer, as the high heat and tumbling can cause shrinkage, wrinkles, or damage to the suspenders. Always opt for air drying to maintain the quality and integrity of your suspenders.

Once your suspenders are completely dry, it’s time to move on to the next step: ironing or steaming to remove any wrinkles.


Step 7: Ironing or Steaming

Ironing or steaming your suspenders after they’ve dried can help remove any wrinkles or creases, giving them a polished and crisp appearance. Follow these steps to iron or steam your suspenders:

  1. Check the fabric care instructions: Before ironing or steaming your suspenders, refer to the fabric care instructions to ensure they are safe to be subjected to heat.
  2. Set the iron or steamer: If using an iron, set it to the appropriate temperature based on the fabric type. For delicate fabrics like silk, use a lower heat setting. If using a steamer, ensure it is filled with water and heated up according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Prepare the suspenders: Lay your suspenders flat on an ironing board or another suitable surface. Smooth out any wrinkles or folds using your hands.
  4. Ironing method: If using an iron, gently press the iron over the suspenders, following the direction of the fabric. Avoid applying too much pressure or leaving the iron in one spot for too long to prevent damage. Lift and move the iron as needed to cover the entire surface.
  5. Steamer method: If using a steamer, hold the steamer several inches away from the fabric and allow the steam to penetrate the suspenders. Move the steamer in a downward motion, following the fabric’s grain, to remove wrinkles and creases.
  6. Allow time to cool: After ironing or steaming, allow the suspenders to cool and dry completely before handling or storing them. This will prevent any moisture from causing new wrinkles or creases.

Ironing or steaming your suspenders can help revive their appearance and ensure they look their best when you wear them. However, exercise caution and be mindful of the fabric type to avoid any damage from heat.

If you’re uncertain about ironing or steaming your suspenders, it’s best to consult the fabric care instructions or seek professional cleaning services to ensure your suspenders are properly cared for.

Now that your suspenders are clean, dry, and wrinkle-free, it’s time for the final step: storing them properly to keep them in great condition until you’re ready to wear them again.


Step 8: Storage Tips

Proper storage is essential to maintain the quality and longevity of your suspenders. Follow these storage tips to keep your suspenders in great condition:

  1. Clean and dry: Before storing your suspenders, ensure they are clean and completely dry. Any moisture or dirt left on the suspenders can lead to mold or fabric damage over time.
  2. Avoid hanging: Suspenders are best stored flat rather than hanging them. Hanging can cause them to stretch or lose their shape over time. Instead, fold them carefully to prevent any unnecessary stress on the straps or elastic.
  3. Separate and organize: If you have multiple pairs of suspenders, consider separating them and keeping them organized. This will prevent any tangling or damage caused by friction between different pairs.
  4. Use a storage box or bag: To protect your suspenders from dust, sunlight, and potential damage, store them in a dedicated storage box or a breathable fabric bag. This will keep them safe and in good condition while not in use.
  5. Avoid extreme temperatures: Store your suspenders in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight or extreme temperatures. Heat and sunlight can cause fading, while excessive moisture can promote mold growth.
  6. Check periodically: Occasionally, check on your stored suspenders to ensure they are still in good condition. Look for any signs of damage, pests, or mildew, and take appropriate action if needed.

By following these storage tips, you’ll protect your suspenders and keep them ready for your next wear. Taking a few extra steps to store them properly will ensure they retain their shape, color, and overall quality over time.

Now that you’ve learned the proper storage techniques for your suspenders, you’re well-equipped to keep them in excellent condition until you’re ready to wear them again.



Cleaning and maintaining your suspenders is essential to keep them looking their best and prolong their lifespan. Whether you have silk, cotton, polyester, or blended suspenders, following the proper cleaning methods and storage techniques will help you preserve their quality and integrity.

The step-by-step process we discussed in this article provides you with options for spot cleaning, handwashing, and machine washing based on the fabric type of your suspenders. By identifying the fabric type, preparing the suspenders, and using the appropriate cleaning method, you can effectively remove stains, dirt, and odors from your suspenders without causing damage.

Additionally, properly drying your suspenders, either through air drying or with the use of low heat, will prevent shrinkage or wrinkling. The careful ironing or steaming of your suspenders after they’re dry will ensure they look crisp and presentable when you wear them.

Finally, implementing proper storage practices, such as keeping suspenders clean and dry, folding them rather than hanging, and using dedicated storage boxes or bags, will protect your suspenders from damage while they’re not in use.

By following these guidelines and investing a little time in caring for your suspenders, you can enjoy their stylish and functional benefits for many years to come.

So, go ahead and take the time to give your suspenders the attention they deserve. With the knowledge and techniques shared in this article, your suspenders will always be clean, well-maintained, and ready to complement your outfit with a touch of timeless style.

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