So, WTF is Dry-Cleaning, Anyway?
Some of us hold our clothing items so dear (especially dry-clean only pieces) but rarely think about what happens when we drop off our goods. Don't worry, we didn't install a Nanny Cam anywhere and find out some scandalous shit, but we did enlist the help of a real-life dry-cleaner to help us answer this question: What is dry-cleaning?
1. Dry-cleaning is not dry. Nope, it's WET. The only difference is most dry-cleaners use some sort of chemical solvent (instead of water and detergent) that removes all the nasty crap off of your clothes.
2. The most commonly used chemical is called "Perc" (perchloroethylene) but it's kind of toxic. It can make you feel dizzy, nauseous, and can even cause damage to your kidneys and liver, as well as cancer. It's basically all sorts of fucked up.
3. Luckily, tons of dry-cleaners are going green. They use carbon dioxide (it turns into a liquid when pressure is high) instead, which is totally okay for you. Look for dry-cleaners who are organic.
4. Your clothes are washed along with everyone else's in that machine above. I think this tidbit of info just ruined dry-cleaning for some of you.
5. Sometimes, dry-cleaners actually wet-wash clothes labeled as "dry clean only" because it can be more effective depending on the material. They then press them for that nice, dry-cleaner feel. For example: some items made out of cotton, are washed kind of like you would wash them at home.
6. You can clean some items that are "dry clean only" at home but have to do your research and only wash by hand. Avoid washing materials that shrink or pieces that are textured . When in doubt, Google, or ask your cleaner.
7. Do not treat your stains with club soda or any random ass remedy first! This can actually cause the stain to spread out. Blot the excess if you can, and take it to the cleaner ASAP so they can remove it with one of their super powerful solvents.
8. If you need to dry clean a set (like a suit) take every piece to the cleaners, not just the dirty ones. This ensures all of your items will be the same color and that they won't fade at different rates.
9. Take your dry-cleaned items out of the plastic when you get home! I know, weird right? Well, the plastic has a science-y way of putting off gases that cause your item to fade.
10. Keep your freshly dry-cleaned threads protected from direct sunlight. Make sure your closet stays shut or invest in a good garment bag.