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The How-To Lounge: Ironing

I personally don't own an iron -- I would rather take my blouse, skirt, or trousers to the dry cleaners and have them steam out any wrinkles, but sometimes that's just not in the cards, so luckily I know how to iron! If you need a few pointers, click here to

  • Make sure you give your iron ample time to heat up
  • Always read the label on your clothing and change the setting accordingly. Using the wrong setting and temperature could ruin your favorite shirt in seconds. If the care label says not to iron -- DON'T
  • Note that cotton and linens need high heat, wools and cotton blends need medium heat, and silk, polyester blends, nylon and acrylic need low heat
  • Stretch your item tight across your ironing board and iron with smooth even strokes so your garment looks consistently wrinkle free
  • Always keep your iron in motion when it's on your garment or else you run the risk of burning it
  • If you're ironing a collared shirt, it's recommended to start with the collar, both the front and the back, then move down to the cuffs of the sleeve, then to the sleeve, then to the back and front of the shirt
  • If you're ironing pants or a skirt, turn them inside out and if you're ironing a skirt or dress with pleats, start at the bottom and work your way up to the top of the pleats
  • Don't neglect your pockets. Iron them flat or else they will stick out and cause bulkiness
  • If you're handling delicates, an iron with the capability of steaming might be better suited for your needs and don't forget to add water while preheating. Hand held steamers are always a great way to de-wrinkle your clothing as well, especially if you have a lot of delicates
  • Whenever you're done ironing any kind of garment, make sure to hang it. Since it's still hot from the iron, folding it will make new wrinkles, and if you're ironing a button down shirt or jacket, make sure to button the top button so it keeps its shape. It's also recommended to not wear your garment for at least an hour after ironing it because it will be more susceptible to wrinkles

I hope these basic tips help any of you iron rookies out there, and as always, please let me know if you have any quick and easy tips that I might have missed!


Join The Conversation
Talullah76 Talullah76 10 years
Invest in a Rowenta. They're expensive but so worth it. I didn't know I could iron until I got a Rowenta. The heavy black and decker are good too. You just have to practice. I love the tip about button-up shirts. They drive me crazy!!
beingtazim beingtazim 10 years
i never iron. i don't own one here but do at home. i think i ironed one thing last year.
Maria84 Maria84 10 years
Nice tips especially for those collar buttons shirts
IslandGirl IslandGirl 10 years
when you're ironing blouses (or any sleeved shirt because it could be a man's own too!) turn the sleeve inside out..that way the area right where the sleeve meets the body of the shirt lies flat and you can really get in the corner to smooth it out...once you're done ironing the rest of the blouse you can then turn the sleeves right side out and iron them. (trick my mom taught me!)
c0rkie c0rkie 10 years
ehehhe thanks for the tips ^^
lilprincess lilprincess 10 years
I was just thinking the other day that I need to learn how to iron clothes! I already wash my boyfriend's clothes so I figure one day I'm gonna have to iron them too! :) and lintacious- that's what I do! I just hang clothing in the bathroom while I shower! I'm usually too lazy to actually iron (plus I didn't know how!)
katlovesclothes katlovesclothes 10 years
That Downy Wrinkle-release spray? Yeah. Someone had better win a prize for that, because I NEVER have time to iron, but with that stuff at least I'm presentable!
lintacious lintacious 10 years
they're $5!! i have a mini ironing board that hangs in my closet, i just take it out,throw it on my bed and do quick 2 min. ironings. sure, im bad at it but the thing always looks a lot better after. i do not at all have the time or money to take anything to the dry cleaners. sometimes, you can also cheat and hang clothes in the bathroom while you shower.
leigha926 leigha926 10 years
i don't have an iron, but i suppose i'll need to use one someday.
Jessielindsey Jessielindsey 10 years
I like th idea of ironing as a way to relax and do chores at the same time. I've known lots of people who de-stress by ironing while watching TV or listening to music... I think I'll have to try it!
bfly1133 bfly1133 10 years
Sorry pop, I don't have that problem with my steam iron so I can't help. Maybe someone else can. :)
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 10 years
I didn't have an iron for a few years, but I finally had to suck it up and get one once I started sewing. You need to wash and press all your fabric before you even begin! I bought a nice steam iron, but no matter how closely I follow the directions on cleaning the iron after use, I still get these stupid little calcium deposits! Any tips for getting rid of those? They drive me nuts.
bfly1133 bfly1133 10 years
Sure millarci! ;)
millarci millarci 10 years
I haaaaaate ironing! It takes forever and I can never EVER get all the wrinkles out. I don't know how my mom and grandma do it! When I was younger and learning, I ironed my dad's work pants and put creases in the middle of the pant legs (that's how he like them). However, I could never get the creases straight. ugh! hey bfly1133, wanna iron my clothes? lol! j/k! :)
Greggie Greggie 10 years
Downey's Wrinkle Release is my best friend. I haven't pulled the iron out of the closet in years. Just hang it, spray it, and be done.
bfly1133 bfly1133 10 years
I get a kick out of this because I actually really like ironing! I am strange I know. It all started when I was visiting my aunt when I was younger. She has always been into fashion and she has a lot of clothes. My aunt had a lot of ironing piled up and I asked her if she would show me how to do it. She instructed me on a couple of different clothing items. I was hooked right away. I spent the rest of my vacation with her ironing when I was bored. When I left, her entire wardrobe was ironed and hanging neatly in her closet.
smp7328 smp7328 10 years
I used to own an iron. My mom always said, actually she still says it today, how bad I was at ironing. So I take everything to the dry cleaners. I have just stopped trying and let someone else take care of it all.
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