Mist slate patterned wave curtains on patio doors in dining room

How to clean curtains

by Victoria Robinson

Product Manager

Published: 06/01/2021

Updated: 16/03/2023

Find out the easiest and fastest way to clean your curtains

With the right care and maintenance you can keep your curtains looking as good as the day they was fitted. All our curtains are dry clean only, but there are other ways to keep your curtains looking great for longer. We’ve got some simple methods for regular cleaning plus expert advice on effective stain removal.


Our handy guide covers how to:

- Clean your curtains regularly with a vacuum to avoid dust build up

- Use a hand-held steam to neaten creases and wrinkles

- Keep your room well ventilated to avoid mould build up

- Remove stubborn stains with a damp cloth


Watch our step-by-step guide

Our video guide has plenty of advice on the cleaning process, from choosing the right cleaning methods to using the right technique. Take a look to learn more.

1. Clean with a vacuum

The easiest way to clean your curtains is to vacuum them using the soft brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner that is designed for furniture and upholstery. Doing this regularly will help keep them free from dust or pet hair that might accumulate over time.

Start by closing your curtains fully, then gently brush the attachment over the front of the curtains.

You’ll get the best results by moving from the top to the bottom, paying special attention to the edges. Repeat on the linings or reverse side of your curtains.  

Don’t forget the bottom edges of your curtains where they meet the windowsill or floor, which collect dust.

2. Use a steam cleaner

If your curtains get creased or wrinkled, the best way to neaten them up is to lightly steam them using a hand-held steam cleaner. Here's how:

Wait until your steamer has reached the correct heat and move it over your curtains. 

Start at the top and work in large sweeping movements to the bottom of the curtains. For velvet curtains, only steam from the lining side.

Avoid getting water or steam on the face of the fabric as this may cause permanent damage. 

While your curtain is still slightly damp, you can finish off the look by smoothing out any creases and creating neat folds in line with how the curtain hangs.

3. Keep mould at bay

If your room suffers from condensation on the windows, this could result in the build-up of mould on your curtain lining.  Mould is very difficult to remove effectively without discolouring fabric, so take preventative measures to keep mould at bay.

Keep your room warm and well ventilated at all times.

Simple measures such as opening a window can help reduce the spread of mould.

For rooms particularly prone to dampness, invest in a dehumidifier.

Replace single-glazed windows with double glazing to reduce draughts and retain heat.

4. Dry cleaning

If your curtains require a deeper clean, please note that all our curtain fabrics are dry clean only. This means we do not recommend machine washing your curtains, even on a cool wash or delicate cycle. Using warm water and mild laundry detergent to hand wash your curtains is also not recommend for any Hillarys curtain fabric.

It’s easy to know what fabrics and linings require professional dry cleaning. Look for the P sensitive symbol sewn into the care label. It’s good practice to check with your local dry cleaning company before taking your blinds down, and remember there may be up to 3% shrinkage of the fabric during your products first dry clean.

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