Faux or fake fur coats and trim on hoods and collars take a bit of extra care to keep them looking their best. Beyond the issue of animal rights, fake fur offers some advantages over real fur by being more resistant to insect damage and easier to care for during moisture and temperature changes. While many faux fur coats or trimmed garments may have a tag that recommends dry cleaning only, faux fur can be cleaned at home. If you do decide to take your garment to a dry cleaner, make sure that the cleaner is well-trained to help ensure they won't damage your coat with chemicals and high heat.
You will have the best results when washing if the faux fur is short in length or looped. Long-haired and shaggy fake fur accessories are very prone to knotting and matting. If you plan to wash long and shaggy faux furs at home, always opt for hand washing instead of using a washing machine. When cleaning any type of faux fur, avoid as much agitation (spinning or wringing) and high heat as possible.
The same cleaning techniques recommended for faux fur coats can be used for faux fur blankets, throws, and removable pillow covers that have become a decorating staple.
|How to Wash Faux Fur Coats and Trim|
|Special Treatments||Hand wash|
|Iron Settings||Do not iron|
Work Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 24 hours
Skill Level: Intermediate
What You'll Need
- Gentle or mild detergent
- Cool water
- Hair conditioner (optional)
- Sink or large basin for washing
- High-efficiency washer (optional)
- Indoor drying rack
- Soft-bristled brush
- Spray bottle
Instructions for Hand Washing
Mix the Water and Gentle Detergent
The best choice for washing any type of faux fur item is hand washing. For large coats and blankets, the cleaning can be done in a large plastic storage container or bathtub. Fill the sink or basin with cool water and one to two teaspoons of a gentle detergent (Woolite or Studio by Tide).
Submerge the Faux Fur
Place the faux fur in the detergent solution making sure that it is fully submerged. Swish the fur through the water for no more than 10 or 15 minutes and avoid excessive agitation and wringing.
Drain and Rinse
Lift the fur out of the water and gently squeeze out as much soapy water as possible. Drain the basin and refill with clean water. Rinse until no suds remain.
Remove Excess Water
Gently squeeze out as much excess water as possible. You can roll the fur in a thick bath towel to help remove the water.
Allow to Drip Dry
Use an indoor drying rack to dry the faux fur flat or place it on a sturdy, padded hanger and hang from the shower rod to dry. (Place the rack in the bathtub or shower to catch the drips and avoid a wet floor.)
Reposition the coat or blanket often so there are no crush marks on the faux fur. Use your hand to smooth any areas that don't appear smooth. Keep out of direct sunlight and heat. It may take 24 to 48 hours to dry. Do not wear or use until the faux fur is completely dry.
DO NOT put faux fur in a clothes dryer. Remember high heat can melt the faux fur fibers and cause the fibers to fuse and become matted. Once this has happened, there is little to be done that can reverse the damage.
Brush and Untangle Knotted Faux Fur
Use a soft-bristled brush to gently brush any matted fur and lift the fibers.
In addition to brushing the coat, you may be able to smooth the fibers by mixing one teaspoon of hair conditioner with two cups of warm water. Place the mixture in a spray bottle and spritz the fur in a small area. Use a soft-bristled brush to gently untangle the fur. Work in a small area and brush slowly. If fibers come out, then you are brushing too hard. When you are finished, wipe down the area with a clean, damp white cloth and allow to air dry.
How to Machine Wash Faux Fur
If you decide to wash faux fur in a washer, use a high-efficiency washer on the gentle cycle for the best results. A high-efficiency washer (front loading or top loading) is much less harmful to faux fur because the agitation is more gentle. If you have a standard top load washer, seriously consider washing the faux fur especially larger coats and blankets by hand.
Fill the Washer With Cold Water and Detergent
Fill the washer to a medium level with cold water. Add one to two teaspoons of a mild, color safe detergent like a wool wash (Woolite).
Add the Faux Fur and Soak
Place the fake fur garment in the washer. Allow the faux fur to soak in the water and detergent solution for 15 minutes. Do not soak longer or you may damage the backing fabric of the faux fur.
Drain, Rinse, and Spin
After 15 minutes, set the washer to drain and to a low-speed spin. Switch to the rinse cycle and allow the washer to fill with cool water. Do not allow the machine to agitate. Drain and low-speed spin again. If you feel the fur needs an additional rinse because it feels soapy, do so at this time. Again, no agitation to prevent knotting!
Fluff the Fur
After washing in a machine, the fur may appear to be slightly matted. You can fluff it up again by brushing gently with a soft-bristled brush. You can also toss the coat into a tumble dryer and use the AIR ONLY setting. NO HEAT!
Small rips in the backing of faux fur can be repaired by hand-stitching the tear with a matching thread. If the fur has fallen out or melted, it cannot be repaired.
Faux fur clothing should be completely dry before storing short-term or for the next seaon. To prevent crushing the fibers, hang garments with plenty of space for air circulation. Cover with a cotton garment bag to prevent dust from settling in the fur.