How to Starch Military Uniforms

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In the military a sharp and clean appearance is expected. It is important that your uniform always look as crisp as possible, especially for inspections. Starching a military uniform can be a tedious task. Usually, you will want your uniform to be perfect and heavily starched, almost to the point of standing on its own. Though you probably won’t get the material as stiff as you like with home methods, you can still yield good results.

Things You'll Need

  • Uniform
  • Laundry detergent
  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • Spray starch

Step 1

Launder your uniform. Starting the process with a clean uniform is important for getting good results. Be sure that you do not use fabric softener on the rinse cycle. Doing so will cause the fabric of the uniform to be too soft and will make starching it difficult.

Step 2

Heat the iron. Turn the iron on and put it on the cotton setting. This will ensure that the iron gets hot enough to get the results that you want. Be sure to turn the steam setting off. Having the steam setting on will not allow the starch to work properly.

Step 3

Starch the shirt. Lay the shirt on the ironing board so that one of the front halves is on the ironing board. Spray the starch liberally onto the uniform; you want to hold it about two inches away from the fabric while spraying. Immediately start ironing the uniform in quick, short strokes.

Step 4

Turn the shirt on the ironing board so that you can move to the back of it. Follow the same directions for spraying the starching. You will then iron the other half of the shirt using the same method. The sleeves should be done next.

Step 5

Grab the sleeves and make sure you follow the seam from the shoulder to make a crease when you put it on the board for ironing. The end result should give you a sharp crease down the outside of the sleeve. Go over this area a couple of times with the iron, starching it each time, to get sharp, neat creases.

Step 6

Iron the collar. Place the shirt on the ironing board so that the collar is at the tip of the board. Continue ironing it like you did the rest of the shirt. You will most likely have to go over this area a couple of times, as well. When you are finished, the collar should lay flat and neat.

Step 7

Iron the pants. Turn the pants upside down so that you can grab the fabric by the leg holes. Make creases down the front of the pants by placing one pant leg at a time sideways on the ironing board. Spray liberally with starch and put pressure on the iron to get sharper creases. Repeat the process with the other pant leg. Make sure you apply starch to the pockets, as well, to keep the pockets flaps down.

Tip

  • Make sure you turn the steam setting on the iron to the "off" position before you begin. Do not let the starch sit too long on the fabric before ironing, as this will cause the starch to flake and make it difficult to remove.

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