Most men don’t give much thought to how they store their suits.
They take it off at the end of a long day (or night) and put it away until the next time. However, that’s how your suit can get into trouble!
If you want to ensure that it’s in excellent shape and ready to be worn the next time you need it, learn the proper way to store your suit.
You’ll be thankful the next time you need to slip into one unexpectedly!
Day-to-Day Suit Storage Method
If you’re an everyday suit-wearing kind of guy, you need to keep your suits fresh at all times.
Suits worn daily sure take a beating. But you can help them out with a little TLC.
If you regularly treat your suit well, you can extend its life and have less work to do in the long run. For example, you won’t have to do as much dry cleaning.
Yes, properly storing your suit every day requires a few extra steps.
It may be more work at the end of the day, but once you get into the habit, it won’t feel like such a hassle.
On the contrary, it can even be a pleasant ritual for winding down.
Remove Dirt and Dust
Your suit will accumulate all sorts of small debris, dust, and dirt throughout the day. So invest in a good suit brush for the first step in your suit routine.
Use the suit brush to very gently brush and clean the entire surface of your suit.
Starting from the top of your suit and working down, work the brush in a downward motion along the fabric.
This motion also plumps up the wool fibers, which will be helpful for your next step.
Don’t ever work the brush-up or sideways against the fibers. This can damage them. However, you can use a lint roller for a finishing touch to gather up any missed debris.
Brushing prevents a buildup of dirt. The dirt may be barely noticeable after daily wear, but it takes a toll after a while and can reduce your suit’s lifespan.
Spot Clean and Remove Wrinkles
A garment steamer is a helpful tool for removing small spots that your brush can’t remove.
It’s also an excellent way to remove wrinkles without subjecting your suit to the direct heat of an iron, another damaging possibility.
Hang your suit and run the steamer from the top down the length of the suit, very gently tugging on the fabric.
Be very cautious that you don’t make direct contact with the material. Allow your suit to air dry before storing.
Steaming helps you cut down on visits to the dry cleaner, saving you money and preserving your suit.
Use a Suit Hanger and Breathable Suit Cover
Choose your suit hanger wisely; wide wooden ones will be your best friend in extending the quality of your suit.
They are remarkably sturdy and help maintain your suit jacket’s structure.
And wood is a fantastic material because it absorbs moisture, drawing it out of your suit after you’ve worn it for the day.
Thick wood hangars are a high-quality way of hanging your suit. It’s best to avoid wire hangers that will make unsightly lines in your jacket’s shoulders, and plastic ones aren’t sturdy.
Once you’ve hung your suit, cover it with a breathable suit cover. It must be breathable so that moisture can escape.
You must immediately remove your suit from the plastic dry cleaner bag because that can become a breeding ground for mold and mildew.
However, a breathable suit covering protects your suit from dust and can keep moth larvae off your suit.
Hang in a Dry and Clean Wardrobe
Find a storage area for your suits that is out of the light, especially direct sunlight. The back of a closet is suitable, but a wardrobe is ideal.
If it’s made from cedar, it will be another effective method for avoiding moth larvae, which can wreak havoc on wool fibers.
The most important thing is that your storage spot is dark, dry, and cool.
Avoid jam-packing your suit into the closet. If you need to fight to stuff your suit onto the bar, you will only end up with a wrinkled mess.
Instead, clean out your closet and get rid of your clothes that are out of style.
Seriously, let go of that cheap polyester suit you haven’t worn in ten years; it’s time.
Long-Term Suit Storage Method
Don’t wear suits a lot? First, you need to ensure you’re storing them properly.
Properly handling your suits in between wearing will prevent unpleasant last-minute surprises when you go to put them on.
Also, if a suit is improperly stored for an extended period, it can come out damaged.
So, if your suits sit for at least a month between wears, take the extra time to store them well and preserve them for future use.
Brush Your Suit
Every single time you remove your suit, you should give it a thorough brushing.
It doesn’t matter if you’re putting the suit back on in a day or a year; removing all surface debris is possibly the easiest and fastest form of suit maintenance. It’s also one of the most effective.
A suit brush looks a bit like a smaller hairbrush. Start around the collar, using downward motions that go with the lay of the fibers.
After the collar, brush the shoulders, then the sleeves, before moving on to the rest of the jacket.
Or Dry-Clean Your Suit
Dry cleaning your suit is a harsh treatment, but it’s necessary once in a while, especially if there are visible spots after the brush treatment.
Brushing and steaming your suits are good for daily wear, but sometimes you must work harder to remove deeper stains and odors.
Eliminating dirt, oils, and smells helps preserve your suit.
Frequent dry cleaning is terrible for your suits, so use some judgment in determining how often you take in your suits.
Use High-Quality Wooden Hangers
The longer your suit sits on a hanger, the more critical it is that you use the correct hanger for the job.
A wide wooden hanger is your greatest friend in preserving the shape and structure of your suit jacket.
Find hangers that are as long as the shoulder of your jacket to give complete support.
The first step is to hang your suit pants. Fold them in half lengthwise, and slide them over the hanger bar until the bar reaches the crotch. Then let them drape over the bar from there.
Next, remove all items from your jacket pockets. Finally, drape the jacket over the hanger, and button it up.
Use a Breathable Garment Bag
When you aren’t planning on touching your suit for a while, covering it with a garment bag is a smart way to save you some trouble later.
It keeps the dust from settling on your suit, so it’s ready to wear when you pull it out.
It also protects your suit from becoming discolored if sunlight finds its way in and prevents moths from getting at your suit and laying eggs. Unfortunately, they can be highly destructive.
Ensure you choose a breathable garment bag. A plastic garment bag won’t suffice because it doesn’t allow moisture to escape. Instead, it encourages mold and mildew to grow.
Use Repellent to Protect the Suit From Moths
Possibly the most destructive thing that can happen to your beautiful wool suit is a moth, or worse, its larvae.
Those critters immediately begin feasting on the suit fabric and put holes all over it.
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect your woolen garments.
Back in the day, I remember we used mothballs. Goodness, those smelled horrific, but they did a spectacular job at deterring moths (perhaps they couldn’t stand the smell, either)!
Unfortunately, mothballs are poisonous and significantly dangerous to pets and children. So, today it’s popular to use more natural methods such as cedar and lavender.
It can be as simple as placing cedar blocks around your closet or hanging lavender sachets next to your suits.
Store the Suit in a Closet
Dark and dry are the two priority conditions when determining where to store your suits.
A closet generally checks both of those boxes. Keep your closet spacious so you don’t cram your suits into a crowded space.
You’ll wrinkle your suit, ruining all your hard work up until this point.
Attics and basements tend to have more room available, but those are also often full of moisture and humidity. Those are best avoided.
Alternative: Fold the Suit
Hey, hanging your suit may not be the route you want to take. Instead, some men gently fold their suits for long-term storage, which can be just as effective.
Plenty of helpful methods can show you how to fold your suit, so it doesn’t get wrinkled. Follow these guidelines and store your suit high on a shelf in your closet where it’s out of the way.
It is still a good idea to wrap your folded suit in a breathable garment bag to keep the dust away.
To remove any folding creases, you will probably need to pass your garment steamer over your suit before wearing it the next time.
Removing Your Suit from Storage
If you last wore your suit a while ago, take it out at least twenty-four hours before you plan to wear it.
It’s a good idea to check to ensure it survived storage, but of course, it did; you stored it like a pro!
Let it air out and give it one more good brushing before wearing it, just to be thorough.
Other Items That Need Storing
Suits require plenty of add-ons and extras. So what do you do with those items in between suit wearings?
A great-looking suit won’t be ideal if all your other pieces look less-than-stellar. So make sure you store those in the best way for them, as well.
Your button-ups are also at risk for moths, so treat them similarly to your suits. And use the same type of hangers to avoid unsightly puckering in the shoulders.
Wash your dress shirts after each wear, then iron them before storing them. You don’t need to cover your dress shirts.
Your leather dress shoes could benefit from a little extra attention once in a while.
Clean them to remove caked-on dirt, and apply a leather conditioner once every few months.
Then, insert cedar shoe trees to help them retain their shape and avoid creasing along the toes.
Put them in a felt bag and find a cool storage spot. That will help prevent drying, which can lead to cracked and flaking leather.
A tie rack is the most effective space-saving way to store your ties. You can hang it at the end of your closet.
If that doesn’t appeal to you, you can also roll your ties and store them in an organized drawer. Start from the narrow end and loosely roll toward the wide end.
Hi, I’m Alex, and I’ve studied and specialized in styling in Rome. Through my writing, I want to help men dress well and learn the purpose and significance of suits and other formal attire. My final goal is to make men more confident in their wardrobe choice and life in general.