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Care & Cleaning of Waxed Cotton (Oil Skin) Garments – Canada

Do you own a Garment made of Waxed Cotton (Oil Skin)?

Many of us own them, but few of us know how to clean them.  It is important to preserve the longevity of waxed cotton jackets, dusters and  hats.  Most manufacturers of such garments asThe Australian Outback Collection (Canada) provide a care label with important care instructions. Manufacturers of  wax dressings as they are called such as “Brittish Miller Rain” or “Camp Dry Bees Wax Waterproofer” (Kiwi) also provide care and cleaning instructions with their products.  You should know that “Waxed Cotton” is made by weaving 2-ply cotton yarn into a strong canvas fabric, which is then treated with a mixture of micro and technical waxes. This oil/wax treatment creates a highly resistant wind and water barrier, while maintaining the breathability of the cotton.   There is no animal skin involved in the manufacture of this type of garment.  Even though these garments are wind/waterproof, certain elements can affect that proofing.  Overtime and with use these garments do require reproofing.

JC Western would like to share some quick tips on what to do and what not to do when it comes to caring for a waxed cotton garment.

What to do when your waxed cotton garment needs cleaning or reproofing:

Dirt, dust and sand should be shaken or wiped off as it can have an abbrassive affect on the garment.  Rinse down the garment by hosing it off or rinsing it with COLD water only.  A hose or shower is fine.  A wet sponge is okay too.  Hang the garment to dry over night in a well ventilated area.  Garment should be clean and dry before reproofing.  To reproof, lay on flat surface and rub down entire garment with wax dressing (cream) using a dry soft cotton cloth.   If cream is not spreading easily it can be softened, either by submerging the container of cream  in another container of warm water; or by applying a hair dryer to the cream container for a short period of time until softening of cream occurs. Very little cream is needed.  Pay special attention to seams.  Wipe off any access cream.  Allow to dry overnight in a well ventilated area.

What not to do to a waxed cotton garment:

  1. Do not use warm and/or hot water.  This may affect the garments water proofing.
  2. Do not expose garment to prolonged or intense heat or sunlight.
  3. Do not Dry Clean a waxed cotton garment.
  4. Do not machine wash a waxed cotton garment.
  5. Do not use any soaps, solvents, or detergents to clean a waxed cotton garment.
  6. Do not attempt to iron or apply starch to a waxed cotton garment.

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