Look Crisp and Sharp: How to Iron Your Clothes


During the course of adulthood you’re bound to have to do chores that wouldn’t be considered manly. Whether that be cooking, cleaning, or doing laundry, at some point you’re going to at least know how to do these things, even if you’re not good at them. And ironing your clothes is no exception. After all, your mom, girlfriend, or wife won’t always be there when you need to get those wrinkles out of your clothes.

The Importance of Ironing Your Clothes


Before we give you a rundown on how to properly iron, here’s a couple of reasons why it’s an important chore.

To begin with, there are some people that swear ironing is calming. They actually believe that it can be a meditative experience. Maybe it’s because of the hissing from the steam or the repetitive movements. Regardless of the reasons, it seems to be a soothing task. Also, ironing can save you some dough by saving you a trip to the dry cleaners. And by avoiding a dry cleaner you can protect your clothing from the harmful chemical perchloroethylene, which is used in dry cleaning.

Finally, and perhaps the most important reason, is that ironing gives your clothes a crisp and detailed appearance. People definitely notice the small details in your look, especially for something like a job interview. Not only will you look more presentable with a wrinkle-free ensemble, it also shows that you take pride in your appearance.

Getting Started


Now that you realize that ironing your clothes is an important factor in your appearance, it’s time to get to work.

The first thing you want to do is check the tag on the garment that you want to iron. You need to make sure that it can be ironed, as well as find out what setting or temperature to have the iron on. Next up is to fill the iron’s water reservoir before plugging it in. Distilled water is preferred since it will prevent mineral buildup from tap water.

After the reservoir is full, set the iron on the right setting. Then you need to plug it, let the iron heat up and sit it upright. Most irons have a light that will come on to show that it’s heating up. The light will go out when the iron has reached the correct temperature. If you don’t have a little light you can always flick some water onto the metal surface. If the water sizzles, the iron should be good to go.

Finally, place your completely unbuttoned clothing onto the ironing board.


One way to iron a shirt is by starting with the side that touches your body, followed by the back and gradually work your way from the bigger areas to the corners by rotating the shirt to each part of the board. Remember. You must keep the iron moving. Even a couple of seconds of being stationary could cause the garment to burn.

Next up are the sleeves. Start by laying the shirt on the board with the sleeve you are ironing parallel to the ironing board. Then, press the back and front of each sleeve. Don’t forget to do the shirt’s creases and the opened cuff of each sleeve. Finally, iron both sides of the shirt collar, then iron the folded collar to maintain the creases.

As for trousers, turn them inside out and lay them flat on the board. Begin with the linings of your pockets, followed by the seams and hem of the first leg. Go back and forth by pressing, not pushing the fabric. Repeat with the second leg and then turn the pants right-side out.

Next up is the waistband. Start by placing the waistband around the iron board’s narrow end, with the fly facing the floor. Iron the waistband by rotating the pants around the board as you move along.

Finally, you need to iron the legs. Fold the pants lengthwise so that the pants are parallel with the board. Flip the first leg up towards the waistband to iron the inside of the bottom leg. Work the sections unto you’re up to the crotch. Flip the pants over to iron the outside of the first leg. Repeat this method for the other leg. Conclude by ironing the cuffs of both legs. Remember. Do not iron out existing creases. Be sure to keep these creases in the same place by ironing along the existing line.

Once you’re done ironing, either with a shirt or a pair of pants, hang them up immediately. If the clothing is damp when you wear it, the crease will work out.

If you’re looking for a more detailed explanation on how to iron your trousers, check out the steps written by the always exceptional Antonio Centeno.

Images via Wikimedia Commons

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