How to Clean Satin Like any luxury material, satin requires special care to maintain its integrity and value. Given that satin alludes to the weave technique, rather than the material within the piece, determining which fibers your item is composed of is crucial in cleaning it without causing damage. To maintain satin’s glossy and smooth texture, see to stains as soon as possible, wash the item in cold water, and lay flat to dry – being sure to keep the item out of direct sunlight and heat.

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EditRemoving Oil Stains From Satin

  1. Lift the oil from the item. Use a clean paper towel and press the stain to lift it away. Alternatively, you can blot the stain with a clean rag, then pour flour or polenta over the stain and allow the flour to absorb the stain for 1 hour. Be sure to brush away any excess flour prior to moving on to the next step.[1]
    Clean Satin Step 1.jpg
  2. Pre-treat the stain. Spray a pre-treater on the stain, and let sit for 3-4 minutes. If you do not have a pre-treater, you can coat the stain with a heavy-duty detergent.[2]
    Clean Satin Step 2.jpg
    • Combining powder detergent and water to create a paste is a quick and easy way to create a pre-treater if you don’t have one on hand.[3]
  3. Wash the item in warm water. Warm water is more effective in lifting grease from the fabric, so can be used in this instance.[4] Otherwise, stick to cold water when washing your satin items.
    Clean Satin Step 3.jpg

EditRemoving Blood Stains From Satin

  1. Soak the stain in cold water for 1 hour. Cold water can help break up the stain, thus making it easier to remove.[5]
    Clean Satin Step 4.jpg
  2. Turn the item inside out. Place the stain face-down, and apply a mild detergent from the inside. This will allow the stain to loosen and push off the fabric, rather than being rubbed deeper into the fabric.[6]
    Clean Satin Step 5.jpg
  3. Blot the stain prior to washing. You can be a little more aggressive with more durable fibers like cotton and nylon, but take extra care when blotting satin made up of fibers like silk.[7]
    Clean Satin Step 6.jpg

EditRemoving Dirt Stains From Satin

  1. Brush away excess dirt. Use a cloth or a soft bristle brush to gently remove excess debris from the item. This reduces the chance of rubbing more dirt into the fabric during the cleaning process.[8]
    Clean Satin Step 7.jpg
  2. Apply soap to a damp cloth. Use cold water and a dot of hand soap, then rub the cloth together until a lather forms.
    Clean Satin Step 8.jpg
  3. Blot the stain. Rubbing stains can cause the fibers to break down more quickly, and will set the stain deeper into the fabric. Blotting gently lifts the stain away without damaging the fabric. Follow the grain of the fabric and repeat the process with a clean section of cloth until the stain is gone. Then, proceed to washing.[9]
    Clean Satin Step 9.jpg

EditWashing the Item

  1. Soak the item in cold water. If washing by hand, soak the item in a mixture of cold water and mild detergent for 3-5 minutes.[10] Work the item through your hands gently, allowing the soap to penetrate the fibers.
    Clean Satin Step 10.jpg
  2. Rinse thoroughly under cool water. Let the water run through the fabric, until the water runs clear; free of suds. Avoid wringing or twisting the material as you rinse it, as this will cause wear and tear on the fabric.[11]
    Clean Satin Step 11.jpg
  3. Use the gentle cycle for machine washing. If your satin consists of more durable fibers such as cotton, polyester, or nylon, you can wash the item in a washing machine. Choose the delicate cycle, add a small amount of mild detergent, and use cold water. Don’t use bleach on satin items.[12]
    Clean Satin Step 12.jpg

EditDrying Your Satin Item

  1. Air dry satin items. You should never place delicate satin items in a dryer. The dryer could shrink your item, cause piling, and shorten its lifetime.[13]
    Clean Satin Step 13.jpg
  2. Roll the item in a clean, dry towel. As you roll, apply light pressure. This will remove excess water while preventing damage caused by wringing or twisting.
    Clean Satin Step 14.jpg
  3. Lay the item flat on another dry towel. Be patient and allow the item to dry naturally. Placing the item outside is fine, but avoid direct sunlight.[14]
    Clean Satin Step 15.jpg
  4. Keep the item out of direct sunlight and heat. As the dress dries, and while storing the dress, protect it from direct sunlight and heat. Sun exposure can cause the item to fade, and heat exposure damages the integrity of the dress by breaking down the fibers.[15]
    Clean Satin Step 16.jpg

EditIroning Satin Items

  1. Turn the item inside-out. Satin consists of a smooth, glossy side and a dull side. Iron the ‘dull side’ in order to protect the more delicate smooth surface, and prevent creases from forming on the seems.[16]
    Clean Satin Step 17.jpg
  2. Place a towel over the item. Because satin is more sensitive to heat and susceptible to damage, taking extra precautions like placing a barrier between the iron and the satin will protect the item. This also prevents drops of water from hitting the fabric, which will cause stains.
    Clean Satin Step 18.jpg
  3. Iron on the lowest heat setting. Move the iron evenly and quickly across the towel. Do not allow yourself to remain on any section too long, as this will damage the material.
    Clean Satin Step 19.jpg


  • Read the item’s label. The label reveals what fibers your satin is composed of, and gives laundering instructions based on these fibers. While polyester is the most commonly used fiber in today’s satin production, some satins consist of fibers like silk and acetate. These fibers require special care in the form of dry-cleaning. If your item’s label suggests dry-cleaning, do so.[17]

EditSources and Citations

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