Toquilla straw, what Panama hats are made out of, is an organic fiber that requires some care if you want your hat to last you many years. Straw that has been left out to dry will start cracking over time, so it is important to keep your hat conditioned. Like any other article of clothing, hats will also acquire unsightly stains with regular wear over time. Deep cleaning and moisturizing the straw ideally only need to be done every other month or so but when you do it, it is important to clean the hat correctly to avoid any damage.
You will need:
We will be using a hat that was dropped into a dirt pile for our cleaning example. Additionally, we will be using the Paul Lashton Hat Cleaning Kit
that contains everything we need for a deep cleaning!
Begin by removing as much dirt and dust as possible using the brush. It is important for the hat to be dry for this step. Otherwise, you might end up smearing stains.
Apply the cleaning solution directly to the brush. With the Paul Lashton Deep Cleaning Solution, 3 pumps of the foaming solution are all it takes.
Gently work the foam throughout the hat. Our solution is safe to use on most hatbands and sweatbands. We recommend using a circular motion when cleaning.
Using the microfiber cloth, wipe the hat dry and allow it to sit for about 3 minutes to dry.
The cleaning solution does dry out the straw, so it is important to recondition the straw. We will be using Paul Lashton Conditioning Wipes specifically designed for this, but if you don't have conditional wipes available a moist cloth can also do the trick in a pinch.
Using the wipes, gently condition the straw ensuring that you get the inside of the crown and underneath the bands.
That's it! We recommend letting the hat completely dry, ideally overnight, before wearing it.