Professional Hand Cleaning a Wedding Dress vs Dry Cleaning a Wedding Dress!

Your wedding gown may be the most special dress and most expensive article of clothing that you will ever wear or own. After a big day of celebrations, it is normal for the bride's gown to be stained and marked. With a wedding dress being a valued keepsake for many brides, Forever Bridal & Formal knows how necessary it is to restore it as close to its original condition as possible.

Trust us, even years after you say "I do" you would like to see your wedding gown in perfect condition and remember how it was a significant part and precious memory of your wedding day. So, of course, there are multiple elements you need to consider before you choose how your wedding gown cleaning and preservation is done, and by whom, to avoid any damage. When getting your wedding dress cleaned, you have a couple of options available because bridal dress cleaning and preservation differ depending on the type of fabric and the methods which can be implemented.


For instance, if the gown's fabric is made of polyester, getting your wedding dress cleaned by simply hand-washing may be enough. Some brides may prefer dry-cleaning as it is a fast and less expensive process; however, professional hand cleaning, repair and restoration is a gentler and safer way to look after your valued wedding dress particularly gowns that have delicate fabrics, intricate details, beaded or heavily embellished gowns.


Regardless of which option you go with, be sure to do your analysis beforehand and be sure you're comfortable with your decision. To help you make the right decision, we have compared the two most popular bridal dress cleaning methods, professional wedding dress hand cleaning versus dry-cleaning your wedding dress.


Comparison between professional hand-cleaning and dry cleaning? Which is best for your wedding dress?

Having your wedding dress hand-cleaned by professionals who will take care of all those invisible and harmful stains, the dress will be restored to as beautiful and as perfect condition to the day you got your gown.

One of the biggest advantages of having your wedding gown hand-cleaned by experts is that they clean all around the edges and spot bad areas. Some stains are not visible to you, even if you clean the dress yourself, and will surface over time when it becomes too hard or even too late to get rid of them. These are all hand washed so they don't become brownish and prevent further damage to the fabric. A delicate professional soak is used that contains absolutely no bleach elements and the dress is then left to soak for as long as needed, sometimes up to two weeks.


Your wedding gown is then air-dried without any machines or heat to avoid any damage. Air drying your wedding gown is probably more enduring than you would estimate, sometimes taking a week to completely dry.


Professional hand cleaning removes all stains, ground-in dirt, and smudges from your gown. As a result, the material is more delicately cared for and will last longer than going for a machine wash. It increases the overall longevity of the garment, making it look fresh and new.


In our opinion, preserving the quality, colour and textures of the fabric over time holds much more importance. Allowing extra time for professional hand cleaning and wedding gown restoration will give you a much better result over the long term of storage.


TIP: Silk is the only fabric that cannot be hand-washed; this must go to a professional dry-cleaner.


In contrast, taking your wedding dress to a Dry Cleaner may seem straightforward and affordable; however the results may not be to your expectations. Firstly, check to see the Dry Cleaners experience in wedding dress cleaning as they may not be specialists.


Dry cleaning utilizes a liquid solvent to wash your garments instead of water; these liquid detergents can fade the colours or shrink the fabric. They also use dry-cleaning machines with specialized soaking sinks that maintain the warm temperature required for wedding dress restoration; however, some materials, delicate trims and beading may also get damaged in this process. Similarly drying by machine with any sort of heat or spinning may tear or damage the dress and embellishments. Most dry cleaners will not do any hand cleaning or do thorough spot cleaning. There are some types of stains or dirt that dry cleaning cannot remove, and dresses can come out greyish, not clean.


TIP: Beaded and heavily embellished gowns may not be accepted by dry-cleaners due to the risk factor in melting beading and trims as heat is used to dry the wedding dress.


When is the best time to send in My Wedding Dress to be cleaned?

Brides often delay up to several weeks to take their wedding dresses to be cleaned, and that's not a good idea. In that time-span smudges, stains, and dirt will have had time to really set in. We highly recommend you to take your dress off as soon as the wedding reception celebrations are over and store it in the same garment bag it came in.


TIP: The best time to have your gown cleaned is the day after your wedding celebrations. The more immediately you have your dress cleaned and preserved, the less of a chance stains spots will have to really set in. Perhaps get mother of the bride, a bridesmaids or family member to drop off your dress.


Do I have to prepare my Wedding Dress to be Professionally Hand-Cleaned?

You absolutely don't need to do anything to your wedding gown before delivering it to be professionally hand-cleaned. In fact, the best wedding dress cleaners prefer you not to treat or pre-process your wedding dress at all before giving it to them for cleaning.


The fact is that any professional wedding dress cleaning service will own better equipment, better treatment products, and experienced hands that a DIY method can't come close to. Even if your dress has brown, black, or yellow spot stains, it's always good to leave the treatment of these stained smudges to the professionals.


The only task you need to do for your wedding gown prior to taking it in for cleaning is to give it a careful examination. We suggest, checking your dress on a clean flat surface such as on your bed, make notes of where your garment is stained and which sections or embellishments may be damaged and require more attention. Unfortunately sometimes these damages cannot be repaired.


TIP: Remember to use your notes as a reminder to examine your dress after it comes back to ensure it is in a winning condition as it was on your wedding day.



At Forever Bridal and Formal, we understand that your wedding dress is perhaps the most valuable fashion investment you will make in your life. Because of its importance, it is essential to pick the best wedding gown cleaning services to preserve your gown professionally so you can wear it again or hand it down to another generation for years to come.


Bring your Wedding Dress into our store – Forever Bridal & Formal, 273 Stafford Road, Stafford and our stylists will be more than happy to give you a quote. If your dress is professionally hand cleaned by Forever Bridal our seamstress will fix any minor repairs at no extra cost, as part of the cleaning charge.




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