Morgan’s Style Sundays – How To “Properly” Clean A Dress Shirt

As many of you know I am the co-founder of Fashion Metric, a SaaS startup in the apparel eCommerce space. I have also been pretty intensely interested in fashion since I was around 15 and now that my full-time job intersects directly with the fashion world I have been getting even more involved in all things fashion. So I thought, why not share this on my blog once a week?

Most people who read my blog fall into two categories – startup founders/investors, and domain name investor. Yes, it’s two very different groups but they have one thing in common – they all wear clothes (or at least I hope they do!). So even if you don’t think you’re into “Fashion” you still probably want to look good and take care of the clothes you have, and every week I’ll be helping you do that.

Stone Rose Dress Shirt

The first topic is one that I’ve been learning a lot more about lately now that my wardrobe has grown considerably – how to properly clean a dress shirt. For the last decade I’ve assumed that the best way to clean a dress shirt is by sending it out to the dry cleaners. I was wrong. 

I recently learned that dry cleaners can instantly kill your dress shirts, especially if you’re buying high-end shirts. The problem is that they are exposing the fabric to incredibly high temperatures (which is bad) and they also stretch the shirt (also bad) which can permanently damage the fabric. Couple this with the fact that your dry cleaner is cleaning hundreds or thousands of shirts as quickly as possible and that $350 shirt you bought will get the same love they’re giving the $40 Gap shirt that comes right after yours.

So what is the best way to properly clean a dress shirt?

The best way to clean a dress shirt is to keep it far far away from your dry cleaner and instead simply was with cold water, hang dry, and then steam. Yes, notice I said steam rather than iron. If you can avoid exposing your shirt to insanely hot temperatures it will last a whole lot longer. You can buy a steamer for $29 on Amazon or just go to your local Bed Bath & Beyond or Target and pick one up.

If you care for your shirts this way then you should be able to get a good 3-5 years of life out of your shirt. On top of saving your shirt you’ll also save a lot of money on dry cleaning. Yes, you might think that freshly pressed shirt wrapped in its nice neat bag on a brand new hanger is in better condition than it was before…but that’s where your wrong.

Boom! Just blew your mind? It blew mine too, but I’m glad I know and hopefully you are too.

{ 7 comments… add one }

  • Michael July 13, 2014, 11:33 am

    Thanks Morgan, glade to know this! I hate ruining nice shirts after I buy them 🙁 I try to avoid washing then as long as possible to keep them as new as possible after buying hehe! I think I will get a steamer because I always iron them! I like this blog 🙂

    • Morgan July 13, 2014, 1:42 pm

      @Michael – glad you enjoyed it and here’s to a longer-lasting dress shirt!

  • Morgan July 13, 2014, 2:04 pm

    @domenclature – on that note I do recommend reviewing your domains monthly and really taking a long hard look at what you’re renewing. Only keep names you know you can sell. I still make six-figures in the domain space every year but I’m paying less in renewal fees each year as well thanks to regular domain spring cleaning 🙂

  • July 13, 2014, 2:45 pm

    Ahh that makes sense. Great come back.

  • Morgan July 13, 2014, 2:48 pm

    Rinse and repeat 🙂

  • John July 14, 2014, 5:55 am

    Do a How To Video


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