How To Iron Shirts

BOYS & GIRLS! Listen up. This is important.

First, DO NOT drink & drive.

Two, listen to your mum & watch how she irons. (Right mum?)

You might think this is a joke, but I know more than enough people who do not know how to use an iron, let alone how to iron their shirts. Apparently there is no difference between cotton & silk? Say whhhhhat?

However, thanks an extremely thoughtful website, Mr. Porter, you are now able to learn the crafts and key to maintaining high fashion.

So below is a combination of Mr. Porter’s way of ironing a business shirt plus my mum’s ironing tips. Because she’s a woman of many talents.

Step 1

Mercury Matters

Select the appropriate temperature when washing your shirt. New detergents now allow lower temperatures when washing (usually 30 degrees Celsius) and certain care labels will advise this temperature in order to make fabrics and colour last longer.

Mum’s tip: Set your iron, too. Set it at silk if you are really not sure what the fabric is.

Step 2

Prep Makes Perfect

Before ironing undo all the buttons including the cuff and remove any collar stiffeners to avoid curling or damaging the collar tips. Make sure your ironing board pad is clean so you don’t transfer any stains to your nice fresh shirt.

Mum’s tip: Plan your tactic. Make sure you have enough area around you. And if you use iron with the steam, make sure there is additional water place near you.

Step 3

Make it quick

Keep the iron moving every few seconds when it’s on the fabric to avoid scorching. Start by ironing the collar, first on the underside and then on the outside. Next focus on the yoke area and then the long shoulder panel.

Mum’s tip: Ironing route should be 1) Collar 2) Sleeves 3) Cuffs 4) Yoke 5) Right front panel 6) Back 7) Left front panel.

Step 4

Piece by piece

Once you have finished these areas move to the sleeves. Place one sleeve along the length of the board with the front side up and iron the inside and outside of the cuff first. Repeat front eh other cuff and sleeve. The easiest part is the body, ironing first one half of the front, then the back, then the remaining half of the front.

Mum’s tip: If you did not flatten the sleeve properly, you might iron a crease into your shirt. It’s virtually impossible to flatten it out again through repeatedly ironing the crease, but it’ll be a lot easier if you spray some water on it.

Step 5

Leave it hanging

After you have finished, hang your shirt with the top button closed. Wooden hangers are highly recommended because they provide the least amount of wear around the shoulder seams. Hang your shirt in your wardrobe with space on each side so other clothes don’t crush it.

Mum’s tip: If you don’t have room in your wardrobe, then fold the sleeves across the front with the cuff pointing down.

And here are some common mistakes:


Never iron a shirt that is not 100 per cent clean as this can set stains into the fabric. Shirts should be changed daily to avoid ingrained soiling


After removing your shirt from the machine, hang it until slightly damp to make ironing easier. This will give the shirt a nice crisp finish. If you’ve over-dried your shirts then slightly dampen them before ironing


Linen shirts require particular washing and ironing methods. Some linen can be machine-washed but repeatedly doing so will make linen soft. You should always air-dry them after washing but dry cleaning will keep them looking crisp


It’s tempting when in a hurry to just swipe the iron over the top of the buttons. This is not advisable, particularly as nowadays many buttons are made of plastic and not the more heat-withstanding mother-of-pearl. Half melted or broken buttons will just ruin the overall finish

You should definitely check out this website where the Journal will give you plenty of inspiration and keep you up to date with the male fash world. OH YEAH.


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