Different fabrics require different treatment.The three materials used to make most ties are polyester, polyester microfiber and silk. Polyester and polyester microfiber are pretty hardy fabrics, and so are easier to clean. Silk is delicate and needs to be handled with care.
Polyester and polyester microfiber ties are made of comparable materials, with the latter being a little tougher fabric. Fortunately, both fabrics may be cleaned at home; dry cleaning is not necessary. Here is the approach we personally tested, and it's fantastic! (Please note that based on the stain's composition, individual outcomes may vary.)
First, treat the tie as needed with a spot treatment. Next, run a mild or handwashing cycle on your washing machine in cold water. Laundry detergent can be used in modest amounts. Even on a white tie, avoid using bleach or fabric softener. (White ties can turn yellow after bleach!) Hand wash the tie in cold water with a tiny quantity of laundry detergent if your washing machine doesn't offer these settings or if it feels like your tie is very fragile. Gently rinse and line dry. Most polyester ties can be dried on low for up to 30 minutes, then dried flat, to prevent creases. If necessary, repeat.
Two further suggestions: Be careful not to iron the tie until all stains have been removed. An iron's heat will permanently embed the stain. Keep bright colors with light colors, dark colors with dark colors, etc. while washing other items of clothing. Additionally, avoid washing ties with cotton or other lint-producing fabrics. A polyester microfiber tie will attract lint, and removing it is difficult.
We've also heard this novel and fun technique for cleaning polyester recommended: Put the knot in a plastic container with some hot water, some liquid detergent, even dish soap. It should be shaken and given time to sit. Then drain the soapy water, replace it with warm water and let the tie soak again. Press out the water, and repeat until the tie no longer gives off bubbles. Line dry.
Only clean silk if it is soiled; otherwise, let it alone. Some people advise against dry cleaning soiled silk, while others do. Dry cleaning chemicals can damage delicate materials like silk if not utilized correctly. Additionally, pressing items after cleaning them by dry cleaners can degrade silk and produce a harsh crease that is not appropriate for a silk tie. Its edge need to be gently rolled.
If you do have your silk tie dry cleaned, be sure to point out the stain to the cleaner so they know to pay attention to it, give them instructions about pressing the tie (or not), and ask them to use their gentlest chemicals. But if you don’t want to dry clean your silk, here’s another method:
First, avoid immersing silk in water. Silk does not like water. Try a mixture of heat, a mild water sprayer, soft tissues, and time if seltzer dab first aid doesn't work to remove the stain. The tie should be placed on a towel next to a radiator or other heat source. Spray a thin layer of water evenly over the stain, then blot it with a tissue. Overnight, leave the heat source on. Repetition is required.
Rubbish remover or commercial stain remover are more options. Always try stain remover on a hidden area of the tie. Use caution if it stains the silk or causes the color to bleed.
If these methods fail to remove the stain, then it is time for a new tie.
Ties now exist in a wide variety of materials. leather, wool, cotton, and linen. The key to cleaning a soiled tie is to treat it the same way you would a shirt or pair of pants made of the same fabric. Heat causes wool and cotton to shrink. Wool ties can get fuzzy and distorted after becoming wet, much like a wool sweater can. After being cleaned, linen ties will be quite wrinkled. It can be worthwhile to see a reputable dry cleaner if you're just unsure how to clean your soiled tie.