When you buy men’s silk pajamas, you will often see tags that say “Dry Clean Only”. This is mostly a warning that’s there to protect the manufacturer from having to take them back if you should throw them in the washer and dryer with blue jeans and towels only to find them shredded after a couple of washes. While you can dry clean silk, you don’t have to. In fact, it’s easy to clean silk at home, and you’ll save a ton of money compared to the cost of dry cleaning.
It is mostly the agitation of the washer that causes problems with silk fabrics. Hot water is hard on silk, too. Therefore, if you use the gentlest agitation, cold water, and detergent or soap made especially for “delicates,” you’ll be able to clean your mens silk boxers and pajamas yourself and they will last for years and years.
Hand washing them in the sink with cold water and gentle detergent is ideal, but if you must use the machine, set it on its gentlest cycle and only use cold water. Silk fabric contains natural oils that may be damage by regular laundry detergent and you should consider using detergents used for baby clothing or some other type of mild soap. Never use chlorine bleach on silk, and never use starch with it. Once you’ve gently swished the garments around in the sink, drain the sink and rinse in cold water.
Never wring or twist out your mens silk pajamas. Lay the garment out on a clean white towel and gently roll it up to take out as much water as you can. The towel will get some more of the water out. Never put silk in the dryer. Hang silk garments up to dry on plastic or wooden hangers, or on a clothesline. Make sure the garment is slightly damp if and when you iron it.
To iron slightly damp silk, the iron temperature should be 250 to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, and you should not use high heat or steam on silk. Iron the fabric on the reverse side. It’s not good to expose the silk garments you’re washing to strong sun or dry heat for long because they will cause the fabric to fade. You can use an indoor clothes line or a wooden fold-up drying rack. When storing silk, do not place garments in plastic bags. If you want to wear body lotion, cologne, or deodorant with a silk garment, apply it to your skin and then wait a few minutes before putting the garment on.
To remove stains from silk, act as quickly as possible so that the stain won’t have time to set in. Rinse with cool water first. You can remove grease by applying talcum powder. Then put blotting paper (or part of a brown paper sack if that’s all you have) below and above the stain. Gently iron through the blotter, and the paper should absorb most of the grease or oil.
Deodorant stains can be removed by rinsing the garment in cold water. Next, use a sponge to apply a 1:1 mixture of water and ammonia. Rinse afterwards with cold water. You can remove lipstick and some other makeup stains from silk by placing a bit of masking tape over the stain and quickly removing the tape. You can add a little talcum powder to get any remaining color off.
Knowing the way to care for this fabric, it makes it easy to launder and clean your own silk pjs and nightwear.