Once you’ve found the perfect hat, follow these tips to ensure that it ages at least as well as you do.
The first step is to create a kit stocked with all the supplies you’ll need to spruce up, revive, or restore your hat.
Tools we recommend:
- Goorin Bros. hat brush
- lint roller
- wash cloth
- cleaning solution
- Raindri (available only at our neighborhood hat shops)
Now that you’ve got your kit together, here’s how to use it.
Wool or cotton hats
Gently use the rough side of a damp sponge to lift away light stains. For heavier stains, dip a washcloth into a blend of mild dish soap and cold water, then gently dab at the stain until gone. Air dry.
Gently rub talcum powder or cornstarch onto the spot, then dust off. Do not use a liquid cleanser on a felt hat, as this may cause the hat to shrink.
First, thoroughly brush the hat to remove any solid dust and dirt particles. Then, lightly dab a washcloth in a mixture of equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water and gently wipe over any spotted areas of the hat until the stain is lifted. Use a light touch and as little solution as possible; this will ensure that the straws and fibers don’t get damaged and the hat does not shrink from wetness.
A few swipes with a hat brush will keep a hat looking snappy and fresh, so brush your hat on a regular basis. For fur or felt hats, work counter-clockwise in the same direction as the material.
For a very thorough cleaning, use a lint roller.
Raindri’s secret formula has been in the Goorin family for decades, and will valiantly protect your hat from the elements. Apply Raindri to a clean and dry hat. In a well-ventilated area, hold can upright 7 to 10 inches from hat and spray evenly over the entire surface until it is completely dampened. Don’t forget the inside hat band, as this part of the hat soils easily from sweat and makeup, and a spray of Raindri will act as a shield. After treatment, let your hat dry for 30 minutes. Apply Raindri every few months, depending on the wear of your hat.
- For best results, store your hat in a hatbox to protect both the materials and the shape of the hat from harm and damage.
- Special tip for cloches: be sure to “nest pack” your cloche inside the hatbox. To do this, roll two sheets of butcher paper into C-shapes and place in the bottom of the box, then place the cloche inside the “nest” you’ve created.
- Place your hat upside down (crown first) inside the hatbox. This will preserve the shape as well as allow you to pick up the hat by its brim (which is the correct way to handle a hat).
- If you’re stacking multiple hats inside one hatbox, be sure to stack heavier fabrics (wool, leather, angora) on the bottom of the stack, and lightweight fabrics (straw, linen, cotton) on top.
- If you’d like to hang your hat on a hook, the hook should be wide and dull. Over time, a sharp hook will create a dimple in your hat.
Tips, tricks, and details
Avoid touching the crown of your hat.
- For a fedora, cloche, top hat or bowler: gently grasp your hat by the brim. This will preserve the shape of the crown.
- For a flatcap: grasp it by the bill.
- Always make sure your hands are clean! Even with clean hands, the oils from your fingertips can discolor your hat over time.
Keep your hat away from enclosed heated areas.
- Hats should never be stored in your car.
- Do not keep your hats in direct sunlight (next to a window, for example)
- If you use steam from the shower to revive your straw hat, don’t keep the hat in the bathroom; instead, remove it promptly so the form does not collapse.
Place a paper towel into the sweatband of your hat to prevent sweat stains.
This is especially useful during those hot summer days when you perspire the most. Change out the paper towel as often as necessary. After removing the hat for the day, flip the sweatband out of the hat and away from its body to air dry.
Caught in the rain? Here’s what to do once you come inside:
- Use a clean cloth to gently pat dry the outside of your hat.
- Once most of the moisture has been patted out, let your hat air-dry naturally in a cool, dry place.
- Do not apply heat to your hat, as this will cause it to shrink.
- Fold the sweatband out to allow it to dry fully.
- Dry your hat as soon as possible to avoid shrinkage.
- Place crown-down on a soft surface such as a clean, dry towel.
- Reshape your wool fedora to its original glory before you leave it to dry, as wool forms to the shape it’s in when wet.
- Be aware that once a straw hat gets wet, the straw will most likely swell and alter the original form of your hat.
- You can minimize this effect by pre-treating your hat with Raindri.
- Be sure to “nest pack” your cloche inside a hatbox to dry. To do this, roll two sheets of butcher paper into C-shapes and place in the bottom of the box, then place the cloche inside the “nest” you’ve created so that the crown does not sit directly on the bottom of the box.
- Leave the lid off the hatbox so the cloche can dry fully.
- If you don’t have a hatbox, stuff your cloche with butcher paper and place the hat on its side to dry.
- Wrap the cap loosely in a clean, dry towel and press gently to blot our excess moisture, then lay the crown of the hat down flat on another clean, dry towel to dry fully.
For hat care and repair, visit a Goorin Bros. Hat Shop or get in touch with our customer service.
The experts at our Goorin Bros. Hat Shops can dust, clean and even reshape your hat at no cost. If we don’t have a Hat Shop in your neighborhood, simply contact our hat hotline at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via phone at 1-877-HAT-1895. We can give you specific care instructions to get your Goorin back to its original shape and condition.