Like everything, a beloved baseball cap will get dirty. So what’s the right way to wash it?
First, check the care label and construction
Most caps are made out of cotton, cotton twill, cotton polyester, or jersey with a plastic form replacing traditional cardboard brim, according to QualityLogoProducts.com.
Baseball caps made of wool, need special care (see below).
Washer, dishwasher or handwash?
QualityLogoProducts.com advises using a laundry prewash spray on the cap and inside the liner of the headband. You can then set your washing machine to the gentlest cycle and toss your cap in. However, some feel that this might ruin the shape of a cap, even on a gentle cycle with no other items in the wash.
How about the dishwasher? RealSimple.com suggests setting the cap on the upper rack of your dishwasher and running a cycle with no other items in the machine. Be careful what detergent you use or skip the detergent all together as some dishwasher detergents use bleach which can stain your cap.
Another method involves using a closed Tupperware container filled partial with water, powder washing detergent and a blender bottle shaker as described by Ali of TheMamasGirls.com blog. Visit her blog to see “How to Wash Hats Without Jeopardizing The Shape” to see her hand washing method.
Cap cleaning kits and accessories
Many manufacturers and sellers of baseball caps also sell care kits for cleaning and maintain caps. The kit usually comes with a cleaning spray or two, special foam brush and some come with a form that can be used to reshape a hat.
There are also plastic “cages” which will protect the cap and its shape when washed in a washer or dishwasher. You can purchase them online using terms like “cap washers,” “cap cages,” or “cap washing aids.”
Other tips: wool caps can either be dry cleaned or hand-washed using cold water and a mild detergent like Woolite. Be careful not to scrub or twist the hat while washing or else you risk damaging the fibres of the hat and possibly shrinkage.
Never stick a hat a hat in the dryer. Allow it to air dry away from direct sunlight. Consider putting it on a towel to dry and using a fan to speed the drying process.