How To Clean A White Hat? Easy And Complete Way

how to clean a white hat

How to clean a white hat? With a few basic tools, you can frequently wash a white hat by hand. As soon as you’ve decided whether your hat can be washed, you can clean it with water, cleaning supplies, and a toothbrush or dish brush. The white hat can then be allowed to dry in the sun or indoors. Continue reading, you will learn more details about cleaning a white hat.

What Should You Do Before Cleaning a White Hat?

Before pulling out the soap and water, there are a few things you should know. It is essential to your hat’s survival.

Look at Labels

The same goes for reading the label on your hat to know what you’re wearing and how to take care of it. Reading food labels is important to know what you’re eating.

Review the fabric and adhere to the washing directions. Make sure that any old baseball caps you have don’t have cardboard visors; only more recent caps have plastic brims or are made of washable materials.

If the label says “dry clean only,” take the hat to the dry cleaners and let the professionals handle it.

Bye-Bye Bleach

Whether you decide to wash your hat by hand, give it a little spot cleaning, or throw it in the washing machine, one thing remains the same: Do not use bleach. Bleach has the potential to not only dissolve the fabric but also change the color of the hat and add new stains rather than remove old ones.

Ditch the Dishwasher

Despite the numerous online articles that advise against doing it, washing a hat in the dishwasher is a safe and simple alternative. Dishwashers are high-intensity devices that use hot water and hot drying cycles, which will cause your hat’s fabric to discolor, deform, and shrink. In addition, bleach is a common ingredient in dishwasher detergent.

How to Clean a White Hat?

There are various techniques for cleaning or removing stains from a white hat, depending on what the tag says. When removing stains or cleaning your hat, gentle techniques are the best place to start. Then, if necessary, progress to other techniques if they are appropriate for the subject matter. Here are several techniques for cleaning a white hat.


Try hand washing as a gentler alternative to the washing machine for cleaning your white hat. A white hat made of cotton, cotton blends, wool felt, or synthetic materials can typically be hand-washed. Always follow the label’s instructions, as other materials may also advise hand washing. Use these general procedures to hand-wash a white hat.

how to clean a white hat
  1. A small amount of hydrogen peroxide, mild dish soap, or laundry detergent can be used as a cleaner. If you decide to wash your clothes by hand, look for detergent formulas that are appropriate. Use a detergent designed for the material if you’re cleaning a white wool felt hat.
  2. Fill a clean sink, tub, or container with water before adding the cleaner to it. Warm, but not hot, water should be used for cotton and cotton blends, and cool water for felt made of wool. Stir in a tablespoon of detergent, a cup of hydrogen peroxide, or a few drops of dish soap.
  3. The hat should be soaked as long as the material isn’t one that shouldn’t be exposed to too much water. While it is soaking, shake the hat a little to get it clean. Keep the hat from being wrung in or out of the water.
  4. Rub stains: Hand washing is recommended for a quick refresh and thorough cleaning. A soft-bristled brush can be used to remove stains from your hat. Depending on the material and the stain’s size, use a fresh toothbrush or a clean, soft dish brush. Do not scrub vigorously.
  5. Rinse the hat by draining the water and cleaning agent and then filling the tub, sink, or container with clean water. Re-dive the hat and stir it up. As soon as the water is clear, drain it again and repeat this procedure.
  6. After hand-washing your hat, let it air dry. Put it on a drying rack or a white, freshly washed towel. For knit hats and other similar styles, roll them loosely in a clean, dry white towel and press lightly to remove any excess water. Unroll, then spread out to dry.


Most woven materials, including Toyo or paper-braid hats, do not fare well when exposed to water. To remove dirt and dust, you will need to brush the surface. You might have an easier time removing tough dirt if you use a brush with stiff bristles. Avoid pressing too firmly to avoid bending, scratching, or other types of damage to the hat. Instead of stiff bristles, a soft-bristled brush will also work, particularly if the dust and dirt are only surface-level.

Removing hatbands or other embellishments will help you brush a white hat without crushing them. If you are unable to remove the decorations from your hat, blow dirt and dust off with a hairdryer set to low and cool.

You might think about using a cleaning solution if your straw hat has noticeable stains that are difficult to remove with brushing. Use a mild dish soap and water solution along with your hat after checking the tag to see if it is safe to use liquids to clean it. Do not soak a clean cloth in the mixture; just dip it in. Using a damp rag, gently rub the stain while following the pattern of the straw material.

If your hat is white leather or has a leather interior band, you should sprinkle cornstarch on it and let it sit for a few hours. If the fabric feels stiff after brushing the cornstarch away, use a leather conditioner.

Spot Cleaning

In some cases, especially if the design is more delicate, you don’t need to wash the entire white hat to remove stains. Small marks may be removed using spot cleaning. A white hat could be spot cleaned using only a few products, all of which are commonplace. Test the cleaner on a small area first to make sure it won’t damage or discolor your accessory.

  • Utilize a cotton swab, cotton ball, white cloth, paper towel, or hydrogen peroxide to apply to the stain. A soft, clean toothbrush should be used to work the hydrogen peroxide into the material. Allow it to soak into the hat for about 10 minutes, then rinse, let it air dry, and check to see if the stain is gone.
  • Vinegar that has been distilled: Use distilled white vinegar in the same way that you would hydrogen peroxide. Apply it to the stain, let it sit, rinse, and then let it air dry.
  • Water should be diluted with a few drops of mild dish soap. After that, spot-clean as you would with vinegar or hydrogen peroxide by dipping a clean, white cloth into the solution.
  • Shampoo: Try using a mild, dye-free shampoo to spot clean if you have one. Do a spot test after diluting the shampoo in water. Then, as with other cleaners, wipe it down with a white cloth and let it air dry.
  • Baking soda: Combine baking soda and water to make a thin paste. Spread the mixture over the stains using a soft, clean toothbrush, and then leave them for 10 to 15 minutes to dry. To check if the stain is gone, rinse the paste off and let it air dry.
how to clean a white hat

Your white hat won’t get any more stains by using a fresh, white cloth. A vibrant piece of clothing, particularly one that is brand-new, may stain your white hat by transferring its color there. Your hat might pick up the grease or dirt from a dirty cloth.

Second-hand washing may be necessary to remove some stains. If you can, wash your hat’s material in warm water and mild detergent. Use the aforementioned techniques or an enzyme-based stain remover to remove sweat-related yellowing. If you don’t want to soak the hat, simply saturate it in a solution of the stain remover and warm water, or you can simply spray it directly onto the stain.


Last resort for difficult stains, try using bleach. If your hat’s tag authorizes its use, only use this cleaner. Bleach has the potential to damage some fabrics, ruining your hat. Use the bleach sparingly if the item is made of wool or has details made of silk or wood.

Use an oxygen-based bleach when cleaning a hat. The instructions on the cleaner’s package and the tag on your hat should always be followed. Oxygen-based bleach can be gentler than chlorine bleach, which could damage fibers.

Make a spot test even if the tag on your hat says it is bleach-safe. Examine the hat’s interior or a concealed area when you’re not wearing it. Check to see if the fabric’s color changes significantly over time by applying a small spot of bleach as instructed.

Once you’re certain that bleaching a white hat is safe, you can either hand-wash or machine-wash it. Add a little bleach to the wash as directed by the machine. If you’re spot-cleaning or hand-washing your hat with bleach, follow these steps:

  1. Bleach and water should be dissolved. Usually, a ratio of one-part bleach to two parts water works best, but always check the bottle for instructions.
  2. For precise application, dab the solution with a cotton swab onto the stain.
  3. Apply a little bleach solution to the stain.
  4. Allow the solution to sit for five to ten minutes if the stain is difficult to remove.
  5. If your fabric is more delicate, avoid letting the solution sit.
  6. Wash the hat by itself in the machine, by hand, or after rinsing off the bleach.

Machine Washing

You may be wondering if you can wash a hat in the washing machine because hand washing and spot cleaning take a long time to remove tough stains. Cotton fabrics may be machine washable, but not all styles hold up to washing. Baseball caps with shapers and hats from the Tilley brand can both be machine-washed because of their lifetime warranties. As an alternative, unformed options or bucket and Boonie hats might be appropriate.

Not sure if your hat will hold up in the washer? To preserve the form of your hat, use hand washing and spot cleaning. If you can machine wash your white hat, follow these tips:

how to clean a white hat
  • Use a laundry stain remover as a preventative measure.
  • Water should be cold or cool.
  • Choose a delicate or gentle cycle for your washing machine.
  • Use a mesh laundry bag made for delicates to wash your hat.
  • Your hat can be washed separately or with white clothing.

To fit your hat without folding or crushing it, make sure the mesh laundry bag you use is large enough. You can find hat shapers made for baseball caps, trucker caps, and snapback hats. Such hat shapers as the Ball Cap Buddy are frequently made of plastic. It has a baseball cap-like shape with a cage-like design that either opens to hold the hat or grabs the front and brim. When machine washing your caps, be sure to always use a hat shaper.

What Not to Do When Cleaning a White Hat?

In addition to knowing how to wash and remove stains from a white hat, it’s important to understand what not to do. You might want to know what to avoid when cleaning your hats because you may have previously encountered incorrect cleaning advice. Here are some dos and don’ts to remember when caring for and cleaning a white hat.

  • You shouldn’t be surprised to learn that your dishwasher is for washing dishes, not hats. No matter how durable you think your hat is, the strong water pressure will shatter it. This only holds true if you use a baseball cap shaper, which is made to keep a ball cap’s shape even in a dishwasher.
  • Use bleach on hats with colorful accents: Some white hats have colorful stitching, hat decorations, or hatbands. Avoid using bleach to clean these styles because it could fade the details. Pick detergents that are safe for both white and colored fabrics.
  • Ignore the care instructions on the tag: If your hat specifies that it should only be hand-washed or dry-cleaned, heed that advice. If you ignore the tag, you might ruin your hat and the stains might not even come out.
  • Check that your hat is of good quality before washing or soaking it. Do not wash without first checking your hat. As rough washing may cause the stitching to come undone, check to make sure it is not loose or coming undone.
  • While some hats can be washed in a machine, it is never a good idea to dry them in one. Placing your hat somewhere well-ventilated is preferable. A drying rack helps a hat dry evenly by moving air around it.
  • Hats fade in the sun, even white ones, so make sure they are dry. When it’s time to dry your hat, stay away from the outdoors. But you’re not required to dry it in a pitch-black room in your house. As long as it’s not directly in the sun’s path, you can air-dry your hat inside.
  • You shouldn’t store any clothing before it is dry, including your hat, which should be stored while it is still damp. The same is true for your hat; they’ll start to smell musty or start to wrinkle. Before placing it in storage, let it completely air dry. To ensure even drying, move and flip any flat-laying hats and beanies as they dry.
  • Plastic is not breathable, so keep your hat in a plastic bag. It will cause moisture to accumulate, which could harm materials like leather or suede. Because of this, mold or mildew can also grow, ruining your hat. Use cotton or another breathable material if you do decide to cover your hat to keep dust off of it.

How to Care White Hat?

A white hat shouldn’t always be washed using household remedies. In that case, experts are available to assist. Research options for professional hat cleaning and maintenance in your area and see if they could help you with things like:

how to clean a white hat
  • Deep cleaning
  • Set-in stains
  • All-over stains
  • Dingy appearance

How to Keep Your Hat Clean in the First Place?

In many situations, it may be simple to clean a white hat, but if you have a delicate hat or want to prevent stains, learn how to keep your hat clean in the first place. The trouble of cleaning stains from a white hat might be avoided with a few simple precautions.

  • Pack it carefully because if you drop your hat while traveling, stains may result. It is important to pack your hat correctly if you want to keep it secure in your suitcase. Some hats can be rolled; however, some must keep their shape. If that happens, stuff the crown with rolled-up shirts or clean socks. For added protection, ship your hat in a hatbox if it won’t fit in a suitcase.
  • Despite the fact that many people wear hats in the summer, sweating can stain a white hat. Try hat liners if you want to wear a hat in the sun, during exercise, or if you want to protect your hat. These items are adhesive, disposable, absorbent patches that go inside your hat. They can collect sweat and stop it from penetrating and discoloring your hat.
  • Consider your destination before you dress: If you’re going somewhere muddy or dusty, you might want to wear a darker hat. While you’re out, you wouldn’t want your white hat to fall or get dirty. If your hat doesn’t fit snugly, you should also consider windy conditions. You don’t want to run around after your white hat only to have it get covered in mud.
  • Make sure your hands are clean before putting on or taking off your white hat. You wouldn’t want to put on your hat only to discover after the fact that you have something on your hands that will leave a stain. Before putting your hat away, make sure that the location is clean.
  • After wearing it, wipe it off, even if you don’t think you sweated or that there isn’t any dust or dirt on your white hat. Take a white, damp, clean cloth, if the fabric of your hat permits it. If the fabric isn’t supposed to get wet, use a dry cloth. Next, give the hat’s interior a soft wipe.
  • If you notice sweat or moisture on the hat’s interior band after wearing it, dry it off. Flip the band down if you can after wiping it with a dry, white cloth. So when you’re not wearing your hat, it can dry and air out.

Does Baking Soda Whiten Hats?

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, cleans and deodorizes to brighten and whiten hats while also eradicating any odors. Pour some baking soda directly on the stain to apply a dry stain treatment. Allow the powder to absorb the sweat stain for at least an hour.

Conclusion on Clean a White Hat

Apply a few sparing drops of hydrogen peroxide to the brim of the hat’s yellow stains. With a clean toothbrush with soft bristles, gently scrub the stain. Give each stain about 10 minutes to soak up the hydrogen peroxide. Rinse the hydrogen peroxide off with cool water, then let the hat air dry.