How to Wash Hats and Keep the Shape

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My hubby loves to wear hats, but he is really tough on them.  He finds a new one that he likes and wears it incessantly until it looks disgusting.  Between dirt, sweat and whatever other nasty things he finds to make them look gross, within about a month it needs to be washed or thrown out.  But that is the problem…conventional washing just doesn’t work well for hats.  Throwing them in the washing machine tends to make them lose their shape and often shrink.  Putting them in the dishwasher also causes misshaping, but often times also leaves a film on the hat.  I have been on the hunt for a long, long time for a way to wash hats and keep the shape and I think that I have found the best bet.


Supplies Needed

dirty, nasty hat

large resealable container

shaker ball

old toothbrush

laundry soap



Start by adding warm water to a large resealable container.  Add the laundry detergent and throw the shaker ball in.  Set the hat in the water (it’s okay if you need to fold the back in) and close the lid.  Shake, shake, shake the container.  I would suggest doing it over a sink just in case of leakage.  Shake until the water becomes dirty and cloudy.  This is what my water looked like after about 30 seconds of shaking:


Dump out the dirty water, then refill the container with clean water.  There’s no need to add any more detergent.  Shake again until you feel like you’ve gotten as much of the dirt as you can.  If your hats are anything like mine, you’ll have dirty water again.  Repeat the process as needed.  Below is my water after four refills…eww!


After you’ve shaken until your water runs clear, grab the toothbrush and scrub around the base of the hat and any other areas that might need some extra help.  Rinse the hat in the sink to remove any possible remaining soap or dirt.  To dry, put the hat on an upside down bowl to help keep the shape.


Above is my before and after side by side.  Your hat probably won’t look brand spanking new, but it will certainly look a lot better than what you started with and it will maintain its shape, which is the number one factor for my guy.


  1. What did you do to my hat!? All that time and sweat honing its beautiful character just washed away. Kidding, thanks love…can’t wait to don it when I get home.

  2. Hey..!!!
    Sometimes it can be really messy to wash a dirty hat. I was browsing for some tips to wash my hat. Glad hat that I came across this post.
    Thanks for this. Cheers buddy..!!!!

  3. Hey buddy!

    Nice post.

    Thank you for sharing the tips to wash hats. I always wanted some tips to wash them without losing its shape

    I really appreciate your efforts for sharing this post.

    Keep doing this amazing work.

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