How To Deal With Sweaty Fitted Caps

Posted on January 08 2020

It's true – yet another article about how to care for a hat or cap. It seems that there are as many articles about cleaning caps as there are actual caps in the world. That said, here we go again. This time, we are dealing specifically with sweat.

Unfortunately, sweaty fitted caps are pretty unavoidable if you wear a cap on a regular basis. Just wearing a hat makes your head warmer, but add to that hard work, hot climates, and other factors, and you have a recipe for disaster where the cleanliness of hats is concerned. Is there a way to deal with this seemingly unavoidable evil? Once that cap is sweat stained, are you limited to a wash it or toss it situation?

Exactly what you decide to do with a dirty cap can rely heavily on the quality of that hat. Did you spend a bundle on it? Did you get it free from some promotion? Is it autographed? Does it contain cardboard or is it more of a high-end brand with sturdy construction? All of these questions come into play when making the decision as to how to clean your favorite hat.

Now, on to the subject of sweat. Let's look at options for dealing with it in/on your cap.

How To Deal With Sweaty Fitted Caps

 Sink Soaking

Using a mix of mild dishwashing or laundry detergent and cool water, fill the sink. (Make sure that the sink doesn't have any leftover debris or grease, etc. in it. A clean sink leads to a cleaner hat.) For 10 seconds, submerge the hat. Then, with cool water, rinse thoroughly.

To absorb excess water, roll the hat in a towel. To help your hat keep its form, wear it on your head until it’s completely dry, use a coffee can, bowl, or Styrofoam hairdresser’s head (like the kind wigs are styled on).


Much the same as soaking but without the soaking! Instead of filling your sink, just run some warm water. With a soapy, clean cloth, rub the sweat stains in your hat gently. To remove all the soap, use cool water to rinse off your hat. Now allow it to air dry as suggested above.


Regardless of how you decide to clean your cap, keep the following warnings in mind:

  • Your hat may shrink if you try to use high heat with which to dry it, or if you try tossing it in a dryer.
  • Because hot water can also make your cap shrink, avoid using the dishwasher, top rack method. The same might be said for using a washing machine, though this has successfully been done by many with the use of a hat rack and cold water, gentle setting.
  • If you think sweat stains are bad, wait and see what happens if you use bleach! Bleach products and bleach itself, even bleach alternatives, should never be used on your hat.
  • Handwashing may be your best first alternative since some hats lose their size and shape once they've been submerged in water. Additionally, if a hat contains any cardboard parts, submerging it will be disastrous.
  • Your best option before washing your hats – check for any cleaning instructions or "How to Care for…" labels in the hat itself. If you can't find one, check out the manufacturer's website for cleaning instructions.

Oh no! Your friend decided to do you a favor and  tried washing your sweaty but favorite hat – and it fell apart. Don't worry, there is good news. Hat Heaven has an impressive inventory of numerous styles, colors, and brands when it comes to caps. You're bound to find your new favorite cap in no time.


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