What is a Pressing Cloth & How Does it Help You Iron Like a Pro?

Imagine sending your favorite suit to the laundry, only to receive it back with an irreparable sheen caused by scorching. This unfortunate incident can happen to anyone, including professional laundry workers who may accidentally set the iron to a high temperature due to a heated thermostat. To prevent such disasters, it’s recommended to use a pressing cloth. This garment care essential acts as a barrier between the hot metal soleplate of the iron and the fabric, preventing direct contact and the development of sheen on delicate fabrics like wool or cashmere. Pressing cloths are readily available online and in fabric stores, and this guide will help you choose the right one for each situation. Keep reading to learn more!

A pressing claims. It is a barrier between the hot metal soleplate of the Iron and doesn’t make direct contact with the material. A simple pressing cloth can easily incorporate into your daily ironing routine. All iron-pressing clothes are different to serve different purposes of ironing fabrics. This guide will help you decide which one to use in which situation. Keep reading!

Imagine sending your nice bright suit to the laundry, and you get it back with a sheen over it that you can never undo–Ughh, nightmare.

What is a Pressing cloth?

Pressing Cloth definition:

A pressing cloth is a small portion of material that protects both the clothes and the Iron. It prevents scorching and sheen from developing on the fabric. It also protects your Iron’sIron’s soleplate from getting any melting marks from a material or a poor-quality print. You can place the cloth you use as a pressing cloth between the fabric and the Iron and press like usual.

You can make your pressing cloth:

You don’t have to buy a pressing cloth as you can find its substitute at home. A small section of the white cotton piece would do. A woven canvas or a portion of organza can also be a good choice. But if you are still looking for something similar at home, buy one! It is the cheapest but a handy accessory for Ironing and sewing.

Pressing cloth as an alternative to steam press:

It is a traditional technique. Many tailors still use this method to save the fabric from any marks. Take a damp press cloth between the Iron and your fabric. Apply gentle heat. Steam will be produced due to the moisture leaving behind fabulous results.

Ironing and Pressing:

Ironing and pressing are two different things. Pressing is the pressure on your fabric to set the patches or make the shapes sit well if you have them. You put the Iron on the area of work, and then you lift it and press again where needed. It is mainly done in sewing, where you want to smooth out your seams and give a finished look to your project. This is more of a professional thing rather than Ironing. Here are some more on How do steam generator irons work you might like.

On the other hand, Ironing is when you glide the heated Iron on your garment to relax the fabric to remove wrinkles. We do it daily in our houses, which has nothing to do with specific shapes or patterns, but you must be careful with the fabric types. Do not move the Iron over the patches or embroidery if it needs to be pressed. Ironing can stretch your fabric and could change the look of your project.

Essential tools for pressing:

  • An Iron
  • Ironing Board
  • Press Cloth

Steaming Iron or dry Iron:

To iron like a pro, you need an excellent quality iron with settings for different fabrics. To achieve the best results, you can invest in an ideal steaming iron, which removes wrinkles easily.

Ironing Board:

An ironing board should be sturdy and large to bear ironing or pressing pressure.

Pressing Cloth:

It serves as a barrier between the garment and the metallic soleplate. Melting of the fabric ruins the clothes and damages the soleplate of the Iron. It saves you from any accidental scorch marks.

Best steam generator iron:

A steam-generating iron that is mut\ltifunctional can cope best with a pressing cloth. Iron with good water tank capacity, stainless steel body, and ceramic-coated soleplate would work best. But before gliding the Iron over the garment, look for a nicely woven pressing cloth so that the steam can seep into the fabric evenly. A pressing material should be used with every Iron, whether dry or steam Iron. The gliding can cause scorching marks, and the worst part is that you can not do anything to reverse the marks. A press cloth can at least make a barrier and save you from this regret. For a pressing cloth, you can use anything that can bear the heat and is sheer.

Types of pressing clothes:

Many types of pressing clothes sit well with different kinds of fabrics. I always use pressing clothes to protect my clothes from high heat damage. A temperature that is just too high can make your clothes shiny, leave a scorch mark or even melt the fabric, depending on its type. You may want to play on the safer side. Here’s the kind of collection that I have

Types of pressing clothes
  • Silk organza
  • Muslin cotton
  • Mesh
  • Wool
  • Teflon

Silk Organza:

Silk organza is a fantastic all-purpose press cloth for Ironing. It is delicate and soft but does wonder. This Ironing cloth is sturdy with a smooth weave texture and high heat resistance. You can put it wherever you want, and it will not move. This type of cloth press is appropriate for embroidered and sequined clothes as you can see through the fabric and remove wrinkles effectively. It can also be used as a muslin cloth alternative.

Muslin / Cotton Press Cloth:

Can you iron muslin? Yes! You can iron muslin and use it as a press cloth—infant muslin cotton works for almost every fabric press, significantly heavier ones. The cotton should be white so that it won’t leave any color while you are pressing. It is the most common cloth for Ironing and is readily available for everyone at home. You can also use it for a steam press as it has high heat tolerance and lets the steam through the fabric without burning.

Mesh Pressing Cloth

Mesh is a good option if you choose to steam-press your fabric. You can see through it and quickly work on those tough wrinkles. The weave gaps let the steam sit in well. But if you are doing any delicate fabric, there might be better options than mesh; the weave pattern is more likely to be pushed onto your fabric.


Worsted wool is the best press cloth for woolen items. It can hold a large amount of water even if it feels dry, making it an ideal press cloth to deliver steam evenly. This type of cloth prevents the item from getting shine or scorch marks.

Teflon Press Cloth:

Teflon is a mesh made of fiberglass. It is coated in Teflon. They have a high heat tolerance and hold the fabric and Iron together. They are great for sticky fabrics and appliques. They work well on the iron-on patches as well.

Teflon-pressing clothes are also easier to clean after use. This press cloth is also used as a pressing applique sheet. If you don’t have a Teflon pressing sheet, you can use parchment paper, also known as fusing, as an applique pressing sheet substitute.Parchment paper is also heat resistant and can be wiped off after use.

Pressing cloth alternatives:

There are several pressing cloth alternatives readily available to you at your home. You don’t necessarily have to buy one. Following are some of the options for making your Press cloth.

  • Kitchen Towel
  • Handkerchief or a napkin
  • Old bedsheets
  • An old T-Shirt

Essential Tips for homemade press cloth:

  1. Spray water on the Pressing cloth and check it with a dry and steam iron before using it.
  2. Do not use dyed fabrics as a pressing cloth
  3. Do not use patterned fabric, as the weave can leave a mark.

Which is the appropriate press cloth for Iron on letters?

Sometimes it becomes tricky to press Iron on as the adhesive can melt a little due to heat, making both your Iron and the letter sticky. Use a cotton press cloth to hold your letters while ironing them to save both things. You can use cotton, an unbleached white towel, or even a cotton T-Shirt as a substitute to press cloth.

Parchment paper and Wax paper:

Many people use parchment paper as a pressing cloth for ironing and sticking appliques. They are heat resistant and an excellent replacement for pressing cloth. But do not use wax paper, as some people also mistake it for parchment paper. It is not heat resistant and will melt quickly if exposed to heat, resulting in soleplate damage to your Iron and dress.

Fusible Interfacing: 

Fusible interfacing is often used to give the details an excellent finish. If you use a pressing cloth over the fusible interfacing, it can bring outstanding results. The finish will be elegant, the interfacing will stick more appropriately, and there will be no change of its removal while you sew your fabric.

When to use a pressing cloth:

It would be best not to skip a press cloth when pressing soft fabrics like silk, nylon, etc. It can save you from burning your valuable dresses as there is no way to remove those scorching marks or sheen. Make the right setting on your Iron. Regulate it properly, use a pressing cloth, and you are ready.

Frequently Asked questions

Any high heat resistance cloth is suitable as a press cloth for Ironing. The purpose is to protect the fabric from scorching; anything that helps would work. There are press cloths readily available in the market at sewing shops. You can buy one if nothing at home can be as valuable.

Pressing cloth can be of different materials depending on its type. For embroidered garments, silk organza works the best. For appliques and sticky material, Teflon is a great choice; other than that, cotton muslin works wonders for every fabric, be it heavy or delicate.

Yes, As long as the towel is made of pure terry cotton and white, you can use it as a pressing cloth. A towel also serves as an excellent steam press, absorbing much moisture. The water seeps in and helps give an exceptional finish.

A cloth press is a barrier between the Iron and garment to prevent both things from getting any marks due to excessive heat. It prevents scorching and shiny spots that appear on the fabric due to high heat.

Pressing clothes made up of different materials for various fabrics are available for use. You can also make your pressing cloth using a piece of cotton, towel, Teflon, muslin, or silk organza.


Iron should always be set at a low temperature, so you don’t damage your garment. But to be safer, you should always use a press cloth as it helps prevent your fabric and your Iron. Sticky materials leave melted marks on the Iron that are passed on to other fabric when the Iron is turned on. Press clothes are a great life savior in this case. You can add this small but valuable tool to your sewing/Ironing kit and be relaxed every time you iron any fabric. No more burning due to heat!

Emma Glubiak

About Author

Emma Glubiak  is a freelance and blogger with a passion for all things related to home, kitchen, and clothes. With years of experience writing informative and engaging content, Emma has honed her skills in delivering compelling articles that resonate with readers.

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