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How to Iron a Shirt


Learning how to properly press a dress shirt isn't always easy, so follow these tips on how to iron a dress shirt to keep your button-ups looking crisp.

Whether you're looking for step-by-step instructions on ironing men's shirts or you're here for pro-tips like using starch, we've got you covered.

Check the care tag on the shirt

Paying attention to the ironing instructions on the tag can help prevent burns and other iron-related mishaps. 

Best way to iron dress shirts

Once you’ve determined the right heat setting for your shirt, you can get started on the pressing itself.

If you've ever wondered in what order to iron a shirt, we're here to help with step-by-step instructions.

How to iron a shirt collar

The first thing you'll want to iron on your shirt is the collar. Start with the back of the collar and work your way toward the center from each of the points. That way, the material won’t crease.

How to iron shirt cuffs

When you’ve finished with the collar, flatten the cuffs on the ironing board. Pressing the cuffs first will make the sleeves easier to iron later. This is true for both button cuff and French cuff shirts.

How to iron shirt sleeves

The sleeves are one of the trickiest parts of ironing for beginners, so it’s important to begin the right way. Flatten the seam of the sleeves on the ironing board and spread the material out with your hands.

Finish ironing the shirt

After the sleeves, press the back of the shirt, then the button row, then the front. Now enjoy your freshly pressed shirt!

What starch does to clothes

Using starch reduces friction on the ironing, which can make the chore easier. It also keeps your shirts looking crisp and wrinkle-free longer.

The drawback is that if you overdo it, starch can cut down on the lifespan of your shirt. The starch builds up in the collars, cuffs, and seams and causes fraying over time.

Try spray starch

Spray starch is a good solution to prevent starch buildup on shirts. You have much more control over how much starch you use with a spray variety, so if you want to try starching your shirts at home, start with spray starch.

How to Starch a Shirt

After you spray the starch, allow the starch to soak into the fabric for 30 seconds or so before flattening the area by hand, then applying the iron.

Have your shirts professionally laundered and pressed

Do dry cleaners offer press-only services?

While many dry cleaners will press your shirt only without washing it first if specifically requested, you usually don't save much money opting for this service instead of the standard wash and press option.