How to Clean Curtains: A Simple Guide to Keep Your Curtains in Good Condition

March 14, 2023

Written by: Florie Malapit


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How to Clean Curtains: A Simple Guide to Keep Your Curtains in Good Condition

Curtains are an essential part of any room, providing both style and function. However, with regular use, they can become dirty and dingy, affecting their appearance and lifespan. In this article, we'll show you a simple guide on how to clean curtains, keeping them in good condition and looking fresh for years to come. Whether you're dealing with dust, stains, or mildew, we've got you covered with practical tips and tricks and easy-to-follow instructions.

Curtains are a necessary component of every home's decoration. But it can be challenging to wash your curtains. Dust, dirt, and stains can accumulate over time, making them look dingy and dull.

But don't worry! Cleaning curtains is easier than you think. To make your house cleaning routine even easier, hire a professional house cleaning service near you.

In this article, we'll show you a simple guide to keeping your curtains in good condition, so they can continue to add beauty and style to your home.

We've got you covered from tips on spot cleaning to the best way to launder them. So, grab your cleaning supplies, and let's get started.

How to Clean Curtains: A Simple Guide to Keep Your Curtains in Good Condition

What You'll Need

  • Cold water
  • Mild detergent
  • Steam cleaner
  • Washing machine
  • Vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment
  • Cotton sheet
  • Towels
  • Spray bottle
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Sponge
  • Epsom salt
  • Fabric softener
  • Lint roller

Instructions: How to Clean Curtains by Type

Freshly washed curtains have an incomparable fragrance and quality, but it's crucial to know what kind of curtains you have. The fact that not all curtains can tolerate machine washing will dictate how you clean them.

1. How to wash sheer fabric or lace curtains

Hand wash your sheer curtains with half the usual amount of mild detergent

Since lace or sheer curtains are frequently manufactured of thin materials, being wet makes them vulnerable to snagging, wrinkling, and other types of damage.

Because of this, hand washing them in a sink full of cold water is the finest cleaning option for those. You can use a teaspoon of mild liquid dish or laundry detergent.

2. How to wash blockout curtains

You may steam clean these heavy drapes rather than going through the bother of taking them down. Don't let the curtains become too wet as you work your way down from the top.

Your blockout curtains can also be hung outside and sponge-cleaned using a solution of cold water and mild detergent.

A clean, wet towel should wipe away any soapy residue. Avoid folding your blockout curtains. That will cause wrinkles. Before putting them back up, let them air dry.

3. How to wash rubber-backed curtains

Sponge clean your rubber-backed curtains

Rubber-backed curtains should be sponge cleaned to prevent lining damage. Your curtains should be hung outside, then hosed down.

To remove any stains, dab a sponge in a mild detergent solution. Clean with cold water and let the rubber backing air dry without touching anything.

4. How to wash velvet curtains

You can machine wash some of your velvet curtains, but it's crucial first to read the label. Unlined velvet drapes can be machine-washed, but check to see if they are colorfast before doing so. Lined drapes can only be dry cleaned. It would be best if you don't steam clean your velvet drapes.

5. How to wash polyester curtains

Given the material's durability, polyester curtains last a very long time. If you use a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment and avoid spilling anything, you might not even need to clean them deeply. Otherwise, they can be washed in a machine.

6. How to wash lined curtains

Due to how the lining is connected to the curtain material, most lined curtains can only be dry cleaned. Your curtains' lining could become wrinkled or damaged if you wash them in a washing machine.

7. How to wash bead or shell curtains

Wash your bead curtains/shell curtains with warm water and gentle detergent

Do not remove your bead curtains. They might become knotted, so you'll have to spend hours untangling them. Instead, secure a cotton sheet beneath the curtains and drape towels across the floor below.

In a spray bottle, combine 2 cups of warm water with a few drops of detergent. Spray the curtains and clean them from top to bottom with a microfiber cloth. Let the curtains air dry after that.

How to Clean Curtains Using Different Methods

You can select from several cleaning methods depending on the quantity of dust and filth that has gathered or whether your curtains have stains.

1. How to spot clean curtains

To prevent stains from setting into the fabric, you must treat them right away. Use a damp towel or sponge to remove the stain. Then pour white vinegar into a spray bottle.

Once the stain has been lifted, lightly spray the damaged area and dab it with a sponge or microfiber cloth. Of course, always perform a spot test first.

2. How to vacuum curtains

Vacuum your curtains using a dust brush attachment

It would be best if you vacuumed your curtains around once a month to get rid of dust.

Shake the drapes to remove any loose dirt first. Then vacuum from top to bottom while paying particular attention to the topmost areas using a dust brush attachment.

Since sheer fabric or lace curtains are more likely to snag and run, use extra caution. Read the care instructions to see if they prohibit vacuuming.

3. How to hand wash curtains

Hand washing is best for delicate fabrics like lace and silk curtains. Avoid using brushes on the fabric, and use a light detergent. Soak each panel in a sink of cold water with a tablespoon of detergent.

For dirt and debris to come off the fabric, swirl it in soapy water. Scrub gently and only from fabric to fabric if necessary. Pour more cold water into the sink after draining it to soak up the soapy residue.

Then, without using any detergent, you can melt a cup of Epsom salt in the water. For 10 minutes, soak each curtain, then gently squeeze the water out. Avoid rinsing or wringing. The curtains should drip dry in the open air before being hung back up.

4. How to clean curtains with a steam cleaner

How to clean curtains with a steam cleaner

Heavy curtains respond best to steam cleaning since it consumes less moisture. Heavy drapes should be kept from being hand washed since they cannot dry completely.

Before steam cleaning, spot-test the cloth to see if it can withstand the heat without shrinking. Working your way down the curtain, start at the top and keep the steam cleaner at least 15 cm away from the cloth. Focus on finishing one panel before moving on to the next.

5. How to clean curtains with a washing machine

The possibility of washing curtains in a washing machine depends on the type of fabric used. For lightweight curtains made of durable materials, this method works well.

Heavy materials that absorb water should be avoided because drying would be exceedingly challenging, and mold could grow.

Turn your washing machine to a delicate cycle before washing your curtains. Use your regular laundry detergent and a little fabric softener. If the top of your curtains has eyelets, lay a cotton bag and tie a rope or twine over them.

Check for additional instructions on the manufacturer's label before washing the curtains. Some textiles, including cotton and wool, might shrink when washed in hot water.

6. How to clean "Dry-cleaning only" curtains

How to clean "Dry-cleaning only" curtains

Some formal, lined curtains may be labeled as only suitable for dry cleaning. The best course of action is to take these expensive drapes to a reputable dry cleaner if you're concerned you might ruin them.

There are four ways to revive your curtains if dry cleaning is unavailable due to some circumstances.

a. Dust them off

In addition to keeping the curtains clean, dusting will stop dust from settling in the entire area. To prevent damage, use the vacuum's dust brush attachment and the lowest suction setting.

b. Manage the pet hair

To get rid of fur, dust, and stray fibers, wipe the curtains down with a sticky paper lint roller. Begin from the very top and work your way downwards. If you don't have a roller, try manually dusting them by putting on a rubber glove or rolling some tape on your hand.

c. Fresh air treatment

Bring each panel outdoors with care, then beat it. If the curtain is large and delicate, allow a friend or family member to hold the other end while you carefully shake the dust off. The drape should then be hung on a clothesline and air out for a few hours.

d. Fluff them in the dryer

The draperies can be refreshed if they are not readily wrinkled by running them through the dryer for 10 minutes on the no heat or fluff setting.

To prevent wrinkles, remove them as soon as it is finished. To ensure the best possible cooling, put large, thick curtain panels one at a time.

Keep Your Curtains Looking Elegant and Clean!

Keep Your Curtains Looking Elegant and Clean!

Keeping your curtains clean is essential to maintaining your home's overall appearance and longevity. Cleaning your curtains can be simple with the right tools and techniques.

Following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily remove dirt and stains from your curtains, leaving them fresh and clean.

Remember to regularly vacuum or dust your curtains to prevent the buildup of dirt and dust and to spot-clean any stains as soon as they appear. You can keep your curtains looking great for years with a little effort.

Transform your bedroom into a peaceful retreat by following our ultimate bedroom cleaning guide


Why should you clean your curtains?

Cleaning curtains can help remove dust, dirt, and allergens that accumulate over time, improving air quality, providing fresh air, and reducing the risk of respiratory problems. Clean curtains can also help prolong their life and keep them looking fresh and new. Also, cleaning curtains can help remove any stains or odors that may have developed.

How often should you clean your curtains?

How often you should clean your curtains depends on factors such as the type of curtains, the environment in which they are located, and the level of use.

  • For heavy-use areas such as the living room, kitchen, and bedrooms, cleaning them every 6-12 months is recommended.
  • For less frequently used areas such as guest rooms, cleaning them every 12-24 months is recommended.
  • In case of heavy dust, pet hair, and high humidity areas, it may be necessary to clean them more frequently.

However, checking the care instructions for the specific type of curtains you have is essential, as some materials may require more or less frequent cleaning.

Can all curtains be washed in the washing machine?

Yes, but only in specific circumstances. Look for the washing label on your curtains and read the manufacturer's instructions before you wash them. These instructions will tell you how to clean curtains effectively, whether or not you should put them in the washing machine, and at what temperature.

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Bedroom, bedroom cleaning, Curtains, DIY, Expert Guide, How to, Lounge Room

About the author 

Florie Malapit

Contributing Writer at Sparkle and Shine Today. She is a freelance content writer with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, major in Marketing Management, and more than two years of blog and content writing experience.

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