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How to Get Wrinkles Out of Curtains

Updated January 12, 2019

New curtains can brighten any room, but they are often packed with less than perfect care, and come out of the package wrinkled and creased. Sometimes hanging them will remove the wrinkles--and sometimes it won't. Not everyone is confident about ironing curtains, but that is not the only solution to this problem. The steps below are arranged from the simplest, easiest and least expensive to the most involved. You may have to try more than one before achieving perfectly smooth drapes.

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  1. Spritz the back of the curtains with clean, warm water and then smooth the wrinkles out with your hands.

  2. Use a commercial wrinkle releaser, or make your own by mixing 14.8ml rubbing alcohol, 28.4gr liquid fabric softener and 369gr water in a spray bottle. Test it on a small, out-of-the-way spot, because the alcohol could fade fabric that is not colour-fast. Spray the back of the curtains and smooth the wrinkles out with your hands.

  3. Fill a commercial steamer with water and let it heat according to the manufacturer's directions. Slowly move the steamer about 3 to 5 inches from the curtains, working from top to bottom.

  4. Spray your curtains with water or wrinkle releaser and then carefully fold them vertically. Tie them loosely with strips of white cloth and leave them that way overnight. Remove the cloths in the morning. This sometimes "retrains" curtains to hang properly.

  5. Take the curtains down and put them in the dryer with a wet towel. Do only a few at a time, so they have plenty of room to tumble around. Remove them immediately, and rehang them while they are still a little damp.

  6. If your curtains are washable, toss them in the washer with a very gentle detergent. Hang them from your shower rod until they are just damp and then rehang them in the window. Or dry them on low and then iron them.

  7. If all else fails, take the curtains down and take them to a professional dry cleaner. It will be expensive, but if nothing else works, it may be your only choice.

  8. Tip

    If you have to pack your curtains to move, or you switch them out with the seasons, roll them in sheets of tissue paper and store them lying down in a long box under your bed, instead of folding them.


    Always spot test a small, hidden area before using any kind of solution on your curtains.

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Things You'll Need

  • 14.2gr rubbing alcohol
  • 29.6ml liquid fabric softener
  • 369gr of water
  • Spray bottle
  • Commercial wrinkle releaser
  • Clothes dryer
  • Damp towel
  • Portable steamer
  • Strips of white cloth
  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • Spray starch

About the Author

Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco's Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.

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