Just like your carpets, rugs, and upholstery, your curtains need regular maintenance, so as to assure that they are dust-free and as clean and sanitary as possible. Here are some ideas and tips for keeping your curtains clean throughout the year:
Remember to hover your curtains at least once a week, just like you do with the carpeting and upholstered furniture. Use a soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner and a lower power so as to avoid damaging and pulling the curtains off of their rails.
For lightweight curtains, make sure you pop them into the washing machine once a month or once in two months, or more often if you smoke at home or have people with dust allergies, asthma or other respiratory problems at home. Remember that some curtains are prone to shrinking, so always check the labels for washing instructions before proceeding to wash them. Use a program for delicate materials when machine washing your curtains. You can use either your normal laundry detergent or special solutions made for delicate fabrics.
If your curtains are made of delicate materials, it is advisable to hand wash them with cool water and a mild laundry detergent or special soap for delicate materials.
Heavier curtains should be hand washed, or even better – steam cleaned to avoid them being oversaturated with water because the drying process will take a long time. You can hang your washed curtains on their rails while they are still damp to avoid creasing.
Do not put the curtains in the dryer after you wash them because they can get so creased that you will not be able to remove the creases with an iron after that. Also, when drying curtains keep them out of direct sunlight, especially if they are colourful because the sunlight will cause the colours to fade. Instead hang them in a breezy place or on their rails, as long as there is no direct sunlight.
In order to keep your curtains smelling nice and clean, avoid smoking inside, and keep the kitchen door closed when cooking. If they get smelly, you can occasionally take them off and let them hang in a breezy area, so that the smells are aired off.
If your curtains or draperies get really worn or have permanent stains which cannot be removed, it is probably a good idea to hire professional cleaners to take care of them. Remember that in most cases, the curtains act like barriers between the outdoors and indoors, which is why they can get quite filthy and unsanitary, especially during pollen season or if you live in a city with a lot of smog.