Decades ago, the American definition of work clothes includes a 2 piece suit. Nowadays, the conventions of corporate fashion have become less strict. Hence, a huge percentage of white collar employees no longer have to wear this outfit to satisfy professional decorum. Professionals like lawyers, academics, doctors, news media anchormen, security officers, business clerks and sales representatives are among those required to wear suits – and they are all aware of some inconveniences of their profession.
One of the practical difficulties of owning a 2 piece suit is that this attire is rarely washable. Keeping these clothes immaculate and respectable is usually only possible with dry cleaning. So how much does suit dry cleaning cost? The cost of dry cleaning a suit is relatively large, entailing an average fee ranging from $9.41 to $13.81.
It is important to take note that costs may even climb higher than the broad average bracket. Location may play a particular role in these cost variations offered by several service providers. Case in point: most dry cleaning services in California are twice the average cost normally charged by providers in Indiana. Most importantly, gender plays a significantly affects the cost for dry cleaning since women’s formal clothing are often hewn from delicate fabric compared to the sturdier two-piece formal jackets worn by men.
Suit Care In Between Cleaning Sessions
If one maintains a regular dry cleaning session twice a week, the dry clean suit price per month could easily climb to over $100. When one thinks about it, the cost almost levels or surpasses utility bills. It is one essential investment that requires effective cost cutting.
Since service providers only offer flat and non-negotiable price that even includes some invisible costs, the best way to reduce expenses is simply to reduce the frequency of dry cleaning sessions. Here are some effective methods one can do to prolong the neatness of formal suits before and after visiting the laundry shop.
- Rotate Suits
If you have more than one suit, alternate wearing to reduce the frequency of exposure to dirt and wrinkling. The more suits you can wear per rotation, the less would be your need to visit dry cleaners within a week.
- Brush Your Suit
After wearing your suit, you should find time to brush your suit at home. Easily removable particles like dust (from traffic) and food residue should not cling on the fabric beyond 8 hours. While brushing your suit, take special care by doing short quick strokes so as not to damage the material. The more frequent you schedule brushing your suit, the longer you’ll be able to wear them before stopping by the laundry shop.
- Hang & Cover Your Suit
Rule No. 1: Never fold your suit (especially if you have to wear them regularly). You are only meant to fold them if you intend to keep them stored in the closet for months. The best way to care for your suit is to drape them while they are neatly draped on a wooden hanger. Simply hooking the nape-folds on the coat rack would eventually stretch the material with its repeated folds. Plastic wrap keeps off the dust.
- Invest On Garment Steamer
Like flat iron, a garment steamer is especially intended household dry cleaning device. It keeps suits looking fresh and crisp before they are worn the next day. Considering the cost of dry cleaning a suit per month, the average cost of buying a garment steamer is only half the price by comparison. An excellent quality garment steamer costs about $50, while there are also cheaper varieties with the same cleaning performance. Take note: keep the temperature relatively low in order to prevent damaging the fabric.
Wise Ways To Reduce Dry Cleaning Cost
Discerning consumers are often looking for more ways to tighten their budget by the time they ask, how much does dry cleaning cost?’ Given the examples mentioned above, another way to reduce some cost is to find the means to avoid dry cleaning for as long as you can. This means investing in knowledge and materials that keep your suit from accumulating dirt.
- Research Fabrics
Contrary to popular belief, not every 2 piece suit worn by white collar workers are fashioned out of ‘dry cleaning only’ materials. After all, these work clothes are made with a considerable degree of durability. Given this fact, it stands to reason that some suits can be cleaned by gentle hand-washing. It is important to take note the type of fabrics that made suits that are convenient for full soaking.
Suits that are made of leather, rayon, acetone and suede are not meant to be drenched with water. But clothing materials other than the ones mentioned above can be subjected to mild hand-washing. Warning: gentle hand-washing should NEVER be mistaken for washing machine, even at the lowest intensity dial.
- Keep Stain Removal Wipes
Apart from brushing your suit at home, you can even clean your suit while you’re out wearing it. Stain removal wipes are designed to sponge off filthy residue from the fabric. In fact, stain removal wipes works very well with eliminating sticky or moist substance blotting your suit. Unless you’re wearing a suit made of wool or silk, stain removal wipes are safe to use anytime. The average cost for this disposable tool is worth $6 to $7 per container weighing half a dozen ounces.
- Wear Sweat Guards
Sweat is the one element that easily tarnishes the quality of the worn suit. While suits can easily relatively withstand external contaminants, it doesn’t do well to withstand decay from within. Fortunately, wearing these inner sweat guards keep the suit from feeling ‘worn out’ especially around nether the regions (e.g. underarms or crotch). These disinfectant pads make clothes last longer, and they usually cost around $13 per piece.
- Watch Out For Discounts
After all the preventive methods done to stay away from dry cleaners, there will always come a time when your suit needs the conventional hygienic treatment. Although the laundry shops are practically impossible to avoid, you can still avail of discounts in order to acquire a huge bargain for the dry clean suit price. Either you collect coupons on a service provider’s website or cut them off the pages of any local newspapers. If not for coupons, at least catch some discounts by scheduling your dry cleaning during the middle of the week.