Why steam winter items?
Steaming doesn’t just remove wrinkles and creases – when you steam a garment, the hot steam also kills bacteria and removes unwanted odors. It’s therefore a great way to keep your clothes feeling fresh between washes, for example when a garment is worn and wrinkled but not dirty enough for the laundry bin. Below, we’re listing some items in your winter wardrobe you probably didn’t know you could steam.
1. Shell jackets
That’s right, you can steam your shell jackets. It’s great for removing odors after active days of hiking or other outdoorsy activities. Adding some steam to odor-prone areas like the armpits will refresh the fabric and kill bacteria. Keep in mind that some shell jackets have waterproof membranes in their outer layers that can be damaged when exposed to heat, so it’s best to steam from the inside of the garment.
2. Puffer jackets
Same principle goes here. If your puffer jacket has started to develop a stale smell after a long winter season of frequent wear, steaming it from the inside can help refresh the fabric and remove odors without compromising the fluffy texture and structure of the jacket. In fact, steaming your puffer jacket at the beginning of the winter season is a fantastic way to bring it back to life after months in storage.
3. Wool coats
Large, bulky winter items like wool coats can feel daunting to clean and wash, but wool as a material is naturally odor-resistant and does not require frequent washing. Steaming is therefore a good alternative method of refreshing heavy outerwear without having to wash the whole garment. If your coat still doesn’t feel refreshed, try airing it out overnight to remove any unwanted odors. This method works particularly well with natural, breathable materials like wool.
Bonus tip: If you accidentally shrunk your wool sweater in the washing machine, steaming could help restore it back to its original shape. Read our full guide here.
4. Faux fur
Steaming faux fur items, like coats, scarves, or accessories, offers a quick and effective way to revive the material and banish any unwanted odors that may have lingered. Faux fur tends to flatten and lose its shape over time, but a quick steam session can breathe life back into these pieces without the risk of damaging the item or altering its texture.
Although fleece is great at trapping heat close to the body and keeping you warm in cold weather, it is a synthetic material often made from polyester, which means that it is likely to attract odors. Steaming can therefore be helpful for deodorizing your fleece garments after each use and maintaining freshness in between washes.
6. Knitted sweaters
As a general rule, you want to avoid overwashing your knits due to the risk of losing their shape or unraveling in the washing machine, especially with delicate fibers and intricate patterns. Steaming helps refresh and eliminate odors without the wear and tear of washing, ensuring that the garment keeps its original shape over time.
7. Thermal underwear
By now we’re sure you get the idea. All kinds of textiles can benefit from being steamed, even ones that are difficult to iron due to the fabric type or embellishments like sequins and beads. The steam lifts the textile fibers, allowing them to swell and regain their natural shape, which is particularly helpful for bulky winter items that aren’t so easy to throw in the washer.
The list goes on and on
By now we’re sure you get the idea. All kinds of textiles can benefit from being steamed, even ones that are difficult to wash or iron. The steam lifts the textile fibers, allowing them to swell and regain their natural shape, which is particularly helpful for bulky winter items that aren’t so easy to throw in the washer.