How To Clean Your Suspenders

You’ve scooped up a brand new pair of suspenders (lucky you!), and you’re hoping to keep your new purchase in top-top shape for as long as possible. 

We don’t blame you.

Whether it be formal suspenders for a wedding, or something a little more trendy, like a pair of leather suspenders for when you’re out-and-about and trying to show off your great style, there’s no shame in protecting your garments. 

In fact, when it comes to looking your best, we highly recommend properly cleaning any and all of your garments, including your suspenders. 

And so, today, to help you out with extending the longevity of your suspenders, we’re going to go over exactly how to clean your suspenders so you’ll never have to question it again. 

Hold on tight to your suspenders, lads! This article is going to have those suspenders squeaky clean in no time. 

Why You Need To Clean Your Suspenders 

First things first, let’s address the elephant in the room…

You might be wondering why you even need to clean your suspenders. 

They don’t generally touch your body, right? So really, what’s the big deal with cleaning them? 

Well, first off, while suspenders might not touch your body directly, they’re still prone to stains and smells. Remember: they’re close to your body, and on hot days where you’re wearing a jacket, like at a summer wedding, or on the dance floor, sweating is not out of the question. 

Not to mention, there’s always the possibility of dropping food onto your suspenders, or someone spilling a drink on you. 

And oh, don’t even get us started on the tendency for suspenders to find themselves hitting the toilet bowl… Yes, it’s a thing. 

Really, for every reason that you wash all your garments, suspenders are exactly the same. They need to be washed. Plain and simple. 

How To Clean Your Suspenders…

Okay, so we convinced you that your suspenders need to be cleaned, so let’s go over how to clean your suspenders. 

1) If you have elastic suspenders

Elastic suspenders tend to be the most common suspenders, especially if you’re taking a look through our skinny suspenders.

In this case, to wash your elastic suspenders, we always recommend being as gentle as possible. In particular, hand washing is best. 

Fill the sink with warm water (not hot), add a mild detergent, gently wash your suspenders, let soak for 5 minutes or so, rinse with clean water, remove, dry off metal or leather buckles, and allow the elastic to air dry. Do NOT put your suspenders in the dryer. 

Really, it’s as simple as that. 

But hey, if that 5 minutes of hand washing seems like a lot of effort, you can put them in the washing machine, but the key word here is can. We wouldn’t recommend it as our first choice, but if you absolutely must, be sure to put your suspenders in a mesh bag to protect them, use a gentle cycle with warm water, and don’t forget to use that mild detergent. 

Note: If your elastic suspenders have small leather details, like buttons, it’s okay for a little water to get on them when hand washing. Just make sure to dry the leather after washing. This is another reason for why hand washing is preferable since a washing machine will expose the leather to water for a longer time period, increasing the chances of damage. 

2) If you have silk or leather suspenders

Got yourself a pair of silk or leather suspenders?

Firstly, under no circumstances should leather or silk be put in the washing machine or dryer, especially silk. Even hand washing in the same way you washed your elastic suspenders is not recommended. 

Instead, clean your leather suspenders by hand with some saddle soap. You shouldn’t need a lot, so simply rub some of the soap onto the suspenders to work up a lather and rinse off with a clean damp cloth.

For silk or other luxe material, we would suggest bringing your suspenders to a professional cleaner.

While it might feel inconvenient to have to go out of your way to clean your silk suspenders, when they’re fresh and not completely damaged, you’ll be thanking yourself for taking the extra precaution.

How do I clean my suspenders quickly?

You have an unexpected event pop up, or you simply forgot that your suspenders need a washing. 

What to do? First off, don’t panic... 

Next, spot clean. Tide Pens tend to work well to get out any stains on elastic suspenders.

And saddle soap should do the trick on leather suspenders since you can quickly and easily wipe this clean without excessively wetting your suspenders. 

However, if you have elastic suspenders and it’s less about stains and more about freshening them up, we’ve got you covered. 

The key here is to use minimal water so you don’t need to air dry your suspenders after cleaning, and to only use a slight amount of product so you’re not walking around with soapy suspenders all night. 

Reach for a makeup removing towel if you have a lady in the house, try a small dab of dish soap with a wet rag, or even one of those wipes that you use to wipe down your bathroom will do the trick for a quick refresh.  

Just remember, when cleaning your suspenders quickly, the less is more rule definitely applies. 

How do you get stains out of suspenders? 

As mentioned, we love the Tide Pen for any stains on your suspenders, but don’t use this on leather or silk. 

Leather should be able to be wiped clean, silk should always be treated professionally, and elastic should come out with the pen. 

If the pen doesn’t work, or you’re not a fan of using the pen, try adding a small amount of dish soap to a towel and dabbing at the stain. Don’t rub, as this will only work the stain further into the fabric. Dabbing will hopefully lift the stain from the elastic without further damage.  

Also, if you notice a stain on your suspenders, try removing it as soon as possible. The longer you let the stain sit on the suspenders, the less likely it is to come out. 

If you don’t notice the stain until you go to wash your suspenders later, spray it with a stain remover, and then wash the suspenders in the same way described in the section above. 

What if my suspenders are wrinkled?

Wrinkled suspenders? No Problem!

Simply iron them out, but be sure not to directly press the iron into the suspenders, as this could damage the suspender. Instead use the steam from the iron to help get the wrinkle out. 

If you have a steamer, this is also a great option. 

Once again, for silk, always have this professionally done. Ironing silk will completely ruin the piece. 

How to store my suspenders for optimal cleanliness

Perhaps you don’t wear suspenders often, and you don’t want them developing any smells or dust. 

We don’t blame you.

Luckily, if you’re shopping with JJ Suspenders, all of our suspenders come packaged in a craft white box for easy storage. 

If you have an older pair of suspenders that doesn’t have a box, suspenders can be hung to reduce wrinkling; however, we would recommend putting the suspenders in some sort of garment bag to eliminate their exposure to the rest of your wardrobe. 

When in doubt about how to clean your suspenders...

Your best case scenario with any type of garment you love is to have it professionally cleaned. You’ll never have to worry in this case. 

The second best option is to hand wash using the gentle practices described above. 

And your third option is to use the washing machine if you really can’t be bothered to wash by hand. 

No matter what suspender washing technique you choose, always be gentle, never cut corners if you can avoid them, and don’t be afraid to reach out if you have any questions about caring for your JJ Suspenders

Do those three things and we have no doubts your suspenders will be looking great for years to come. 




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