Cleaning Sweat Stained Baseball Hats?

My boyfriend sweats a lot and when he wears his hats it ends up leaving stains all over the hat. I don't want to ruin it by putting it in the washing machine and I don't know if just soap and water would mess up the hat either. How can I get it looking clean and new again?


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June 13, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

Many people wear these caps until they are beyond cleaning just because they are a lot of trouble to clean or they are afraid they will ruin a "sacred" hat - both reasons are valid but with a little care they can be cleaned. Hope you can use some of the information supplied.

  • "First, check your cap's tag to find the washing instructions. If there aren't any, mix warm water with a mild dish washing or laundry detergent. Don't use a detergent that contains bleach or bleach alternative, as they can stain the fabric. If there are stubborn sweat stains on the inner brim, rub them with shampoo to help loosen body oils (some people use Zout, Shout or other sprays). Shampoo has always worked for me. Use a soft tooth brush (or any small soft brush) and gently work the shampoo into the stained areas. Be very careful around the logos etc - be gentle.
  • Mix your detergent or Dawn (try about 1/4 cup or less) in a bucket or your kitchen sink.
  • Add hats (after spot cleaning) and let soak for 30 minutes or more. Gently push the caps up and down in the solution to loosen the dirt and grime.
  • Remove caps to clean water and push up and down to remove soap. Rinse several times - until water looks clear.
  • (Leave or set soapy water aside [in case you have to resoak].)
  • Soak up excess water with a nice thick towel by gently pressing (it may take more than one towel).
  • Place wet cap over a tall object (round like a large coffee container if one is available) to finish drying (do not put in sunshine).
  • They do sell ballcap buddies that help to hold caps in shape so you might want to look at using one of those.
  • There are plenty of articles showing different ways to clean caps so check some of them out and find a solution that fits your situation.
  • Even YouTube has several links so pick one way and give it a try but hand washing is the safest way to preserve these caps and still get them reasonably clean.
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June 12, 20180 found this helpful

Every hat is different, but when I had a dishwasher, I used to run them through a short cycle (stop before the dry cycle) and remove and line dry either outside or off the shower curtain.

I used just a few shakes of the Cascade, or whatever brand was on sale at the time. You need about 1/8th of what you would use for dishes. None of the other things got added...just a bit of the (then) powder soap.

Nothing else goes in the machine but hats and I only ever did them on the top rack. I think I could fit 4, maybe's been a while.

I had luck with most hats and most stains, but did ruin a few in my day. If they are going to be tossed if you can't get the stains out anyway, it is worth a try.

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June 12, 20180 found this helpful

There are hat forms available on Amazon. I used them and hand washed the caps in the sink

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June 12, 20180 found this helpful

I hand wash the hats and hang dry outside.

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