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The Ultimate Guide to Proper Ironing Techniques

Expert Tips & Hacks – Step-by-Step Guide to Better (& quicker) Ironing

Updated: Thursday 22 Feb 2024

Ladies pressing clothes

Fortunately, ironing has got a whole load easier over the years.

Achieving perfectly pressed, wrinkle-free clothes is quick & easy with the right techniques & the best steam iron. Here’s the ultimate guide to proper ironing techniques, providing you with expert tips and step-by-step instructions to transform your ironing routine. From preparing your ironing station to tackling different fabric types, this comprehensive guide will ensure that your clothes look their best. 

Say goodbye to unsightly wrinkles and hello to crisp, polished garments with this ultimate guide to ironing.

Start with the right iron & board 

Before you start ironing, it’s crucial to get the right set-up. Follow these three steps to ensure a smooth and efficient ironing experience…

  1. Use a decent ironing board. Choose a sturdy, well-padded ironing board that provides a flat surface for wrinkle-free results. Make sure you’re close enough to the electrical socket.
  2. Check your iron’s condition. Ensure that your iron is clean, free of mineral deposits, and in good working order. A properly maintained iron is essential for achieving top-notch results.
  3. Know your heat settings & which button to use for a steam shot. This will help you set the appropriate temperature for each garment.

Sorting and Preparing Garments

Properly sorting and preparing your clean garments before ironing will save you time and help you achieve the best results. Follow these steps…

  1. Sort by fabric type. Separate your garments into categories based on fabric type, such as cotton, linen, synthetic, and delicate materials.
  2. Check for care labels. Examine the care labels on your garments to determine the recommended ironing temperatures and any specific instructions.
  3. Mist lightly or use a fabric spray. For fabrics like cotton & linen that benefit from added moisture, lightly mist them with water or use a fabric spray before ironing. This step helps relax the fibres, making it easier & quicker to remove wrinkles.

Mastering Ironing Techniques

For the best results, you need different techniques for each garment. Follow these step-by-step instructions & you’ll achieve professional ironing results in no time…

  1. For shirts, start with the collar and cuffs. Begin by ironing the underside of the collar, then move to the top side. Iron the cuffs next, starting from the inside and working your way out.

Next iron the sleeves. Insert one sleeve (shoulder end) over the narrow end of the ironing board, smoothing out any wrinkles. Begin ironing from the shoulder to the cuff, repeating the process for the other sleeve. 

Then iron the back of the garment, moving to the front, focusing on one side at a time. Pay attention to buttons, pockets, and plackets, ironing around them.

  1. For trousers and skirts, start with the waistband and pockets, then iron the garment’s front and back. To smooth out wrinkles around pleats and creases, press the area rather than the usual gliding motion. 
  2. For delicate fabrics like silk or lace, use a low heat setting and place a pressing cloth or tea towel (clean!) between the iron and the fabric to prevent damage.

Expert Tips & Tricks

To further enhance your ironing skills, try these expert tips and tricks…

  1. Use the steam function. Steam is your best friend when it comes to stubborn wrinkles. Use the steam function on your iron to relax the fibres and achieve smoother results.
  2. Iron garments inside out. This technique is especially useful for dark-coloured fabrics as it prevents shine and preserves the garment’s colour.
  3. Hang clothes out immediately. Straight after the wash finishes, give each item a shake, reshape it and hang it out to dry. Hanging ironed garments promptly helps maintain their wrinkle-free appearance. This step is especially crucial for shirts and dresses to prevent new wrinkles from forming.
  4. Adjust the iron temperature cautiously. When unsure about the fabric type, start with a low heat setting and gradually increase if required. Testing a small, inconspicuous area beforehand is advisable. Alternatively, buy a steam generator iron that adjusts the temperature automatically. 
  5. Let the iron do the work. You don’t need to press down, let the heat and steam remove the creases.
  6. A steam generator iron will cut your ironing time by around a third AND give you better results. If this appeals, click here to take a look at the UK’s top steam generator irons & learn more.

Conclusion

There’s something special about wearing well-pressed clothes. Feeling smart brings confidence and with this everything roles a little easier. And what’s important, is that with the right ironing techniques, great results are quick & easy.

You can achieve crisp, wrinkle-free perfection for all your clothes, from collars and cuffs to trousers and delicate fabrics. Say hello to a polished wardrobe and outfits that exudes confidence and professionalism. With a little practice and the guidance provided here, you’ll become an ironing expert and enjoy impeccably pressed clothes every day – looking good!


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