Why dry cleaning works

With the sun having made a very brief appearance over the last few days, chances are your trusty duffle coat has finally been relegated to the wardrobe (unless you’re hanging onto it to see you through the rain…). But, did you spare the time to clean it properly before you stored it? If not then now’s the time to do it, ensuring your coat will look fabulous in a few months’ time.

There’s something almost exciting about getting your coat out again in the autumn, and you wouldn’t want to find it far too dirty to be wearable. That’s why treating it to a professional dry clean should be the only solution—in doing so you’ll not only be keeping your coat happy but it’ll keep you happy too, and there’s a reason that dry cleaning works so well.

Dry cleaning uses a chemical solvent to clean clothes rather than water, with it offering far superior results when compared to traditional cleaning processes. The most common solvent used is perchloroethylene (or perc) and it’s this that gives dry cleaning its seemingly miraculous capabilities—it doesn’t penetrate delicate, water-sensitive fibres like water does and is able to lift dirt from fabrics without shrinking or fading them. It’s a surprisingly gentle and effective method of cleaning, and is why so many items (including many coats) are labelled as dry clean only.

So, dry cleaning isn’t actually dry at all. Who’d have thought it! In actual fact the machines used in dry cleaning are much like regular washing machines—the clothes are put a machine, it’s filled with solvent and the drum rotates—yet they’re much more appropriate for your special items of clothing, with perc making all the difference. So, why does dry cleaning work so well? It’s all down to the solvent, and if you get it sorted now your trusty duffle will be ready and waiting for you in the autumn.