Suit method for a wetcleaning beginner

Our industry has been going through a long-term slowdown and the coronavirus has made our situation even worse. Surely it will pass but I believe the post-pandemic world will never be the same. One notable change will be the heightened awareness about hygiene and health.

One thing I noticed during the pandemic is that more and more people are showing interest in organic cleaning and wetcleaning. My store has long been promoted as a wetcleaning shop and quite a few new customers came from referrals. Crisis leads to an opportunity and the pandemic is likely to help wetcleaners to garner more business. When people want more hygienic cleaning process, it’s hard to beat wetcleaning where fresh water is used to wash and rinse.


I think there is more interest in wetcleaning among dry cleaners and many of them find it quite satisfying. Even for them, suit jackets can prove quite challenging and they resign to dry cleaning them. So I would like to teach you an easy method for wetcleaning suit jackets.

As long as you follow general principles and use good chemicals, suit jackets should not be a challenge. Proper chemicals should prevent problems like fine wrinkles, loss of luster, rough hand and pressing difficulties. I cannot emphasize the importance of good chemicals.

Improved drying method

Suit jackets present problems with pressing especially with shoulder areas. But this can be addressed by using proper amount of conditioners and improving drying method.

Principal method of drying should be hanged drying. Hang drying overnight should give you slightly damp clothes. During hot summer months, you need to watch out for completely dried clothes. Clothes need to have some moisture before tumble drying. Moisture helps remove fine wrinkles and put conditioners to work. If clothes are too dry, spray some water before tumble drying. As long as you follow this simple principle, you will have clothes looking as if they were dry cleaned.

Another area of concern is undulating bottom hemline of a jacket. This problem happens during dry cleaning as well and is not exclusive to wetcleaning.

When a jacket becomes like this, most people conclude that the lining shrank. But it is also likely that the shell fabric has relaxed. The jacket in the picture has the lining made of polyester so it’s not likely it shrunk. In this case, we need to shrink the shell fabric to its original size.

It is quite simple, Spray good amount of water on the jacket and hang it dry (boiler room can save you some time). Water will help restore relaxed fiber to its original size.

After hand drying, put it in the tumbler and it will relax the fiber to facilitate pressing. If the problem was not so bad, you can skip tumble drying and send it to the pressers right away.

When a jacket’s hemline is looking like this, sometimes it is the shell fabric that relaxed. Simply spray generously with water and hang dry.
Picture of Yangsoo Kim

Yangsoo Kim

The author is the developer of Aqua Master wet cleaning chemicals and is currently operating Green Life Cleaners, a 100% wet cleaning service. You can contact him by phone (201) 699-7227 or email at