Are you a regular participant at geek conventions or furry events? Then surely you are well familiar with fursuits.
Maintaining these exquisite costumes is a breeze even for those who do not attend regularly. But otherwise, you need to know how to clean a fursuit properly for long-term usage.
This article will lend you some helpful pointers. Let’s dive in!
What Is A Fursuit?
WikiFur defines Fursuits as animal-inspired outfits connected with the furry fandom. Furries (people who love wearing fursuits) often design or order suits for their fursonas.
They will bring these costumes to festivals, furry gatherings, geek conventions, or photo sessions (if not all four!).
As per an artist community site named “Artists Beware”, the most well-known fursuit is the “full suit,” covering your whole body.
Their padding and creative styles vary, though. They range from comical anthropomorphic critters to realistic fur and textures.
Other popular fursuit constructions include the “partial” fursuit, which consists of a head attached to tails or claws.
Another beloved item is the Japanese Kigurumi. It is an increasingly widespread alternative to costlier and way more uncomfortable body suits, as Artists Beware observes.
Contrary to common sentiments, these items are not exclusive to sexual intercourse. Still, some fursuiters indeed love having intercourse in their furred outfits.
They even purchase crotch fursuits dedicated solely to sex.
How to Clean A Fursuit?
Each costume fabric demands unique cleaning methods, so the best solution is to consult the fursuit makers for more comprehensive guidance.
There is no one-size-fits-all tactic, unfortunately. Still, some tips below will undoubtedly streamline your maintenance process:
Get Acquainted with The Material Composition
Intimate knowledge of the material basis is crucial. It helps you pick out the most appropriate maintenance method.
For instance, most custom-made costumes are constructed of faux fur.
Its acrylic fibers do not fare well when exposed to electric heaters or radiators. These sources may eventually deteriorate the mesh fabric.
Constant immersion in moisture is also not recommended. So be extra cautious during your cleansing.
And as previously established, do not forget to clarify its materials with the suit maker. That way, you can ascertain the most effective process for cleaning.
Before you consider all the care alternatives discussed in this article, precise instructions from your designers always come first.
Be Prepared for Requirements of Specific Hues
A critical aspect that novices often overlook is the direct impact of certain costume colors on their maintenance and upkeep.
By illustration, white is often combined with other main (or secondary) shades in multiple designs. It is dirted more quickly and visibly than darker colors.
So for people picking white or other vibrant hues, you need to spend much more time on the washing process.
And if you are not ready for that, be more cautious during your suit purchase. Only choose a medium-shaded or dim color scheme.
Never Machine-Wash The Head
How to clean a fursuit head? First of all, you should always hand-wash it. Should there be any white spots or stains from fabric textiles, apply some dirt remover before washing.
Use the showerhead to dampen the exterior part. And if there is no exterior part, a pump or water can suffice. Still, do not completely immerse it in water.
Once most of the item is soaked, apply the detergent. Opt for the same washing powder as you would use for the remainder of the suit.
Take caution and spread delicate detergent carefully. Excessive amounts might make it more difficult to remove afterwards. Then rinse until the powder produces foam and bubbles.
Aside from detergent, rubbing alcohol is also favorable. So how to clean a fursuit head using rubbing alcohol? It is best to employ a mixture of 50% or 75% Isopropyl rubbing alcohol and lukewarm water in a squeeze bottle.
A rough ratio of 50/50 (1-part water and 1-part alcohol) will be great. After that, spray the mixture gently over the head.
In all cases, hang it to dry in a well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight. Do not forget to brush the head all over before letting the item rest on a couple of towels or cushions.
Use Strong Detergent Pods for Digitigrade Suits with Airbrushing
How to clean a fursuit with airbrushing? The process is no different from regular suits, except you might need stronger detergents and liquids to wash off all the airbrush markings.
Persil ProClean or Kirkland UltraClean often works wonders for stubborn stains. Still, check with your designer to confirm their compatibility with the suit textile.
Keep The Tails Away from Electric Dryers
Never, and we stress, never, put the tails near a hair dryer. Most fursuit textures (especially polyester) cannot tolerate any heat.
The compact size of these tails will accelerate the damage further.
So how to clean a fursuit tail?
Fortunately, their maintenance procedure is rather straightforward, aside from the hazard mentioned above.
Even machine-washing is acceptable. Just remember to remove the foam padding first. (Do you wash bamboo pillows often?
If yes, then this step must be pretty familiar to you). Allow more drying time for slightly larger tails.
But how to spot clean a fursuit tail if you are not a keen fan of washing machines? The obvious answer is to go back to traditional hand washing.
The most common tactic is to use hot water and Woolite in a roomy bathtub.
Extra Tips for Easier Cleaning
Separate Your Fursuit Attachments for Indoor and Outdoor Usage
One of the most potent approaches is to have separate outdoor and indoor accessories (such as feet paws).
Why? Most fur fibers and cushioning for paws are not meant to resist the battering of outdoor conditions (in the same way that a pair of leather loafers are).
Worse, fursuits are susceptible to color fade caused by muck, filth, and grime. Snow or rain does not help the situation, either.
Hence, we suggest you purchase a set of paws suited to each condition. Get one pair for indoor activities and another for outdoor tasks.
Another option is to wear a partial fursuit – such as the foam head and paws – under regular sneakers whenever you are outside. (Pick breathable and stretchy footwear to avoid toe shredding, though!)
These tactics seem daunting at first, but they facilitate easier cleaning and maintenance.
You might do an excellent job of protecting the suit exterior from harsh weather conditions. Unfortunately, the silent murderer is often hidden inside. Sweats!
Most fursuiters like to wear ordinary T-shirts and shorts underneath their costume bodysuits. It is a grave, grave mistake.
Typical cotton or polyester textiles will absorb moisture from your sweats and disseminate them throughout the remainder of your outfit.
Thus, we are not surprised that many people complain about “total saturation” while wearing their suits.
After all, there is a rather gross mixture of heat from your internal body system and worn clothes! We can imagine the pains and agony of scrubbing these tainted fursuits.
Even worse, germs and mold development might become a problem once more water is drawn in the suit – possibly causing long-term harm to the costume.
One approach to tackle this issue is to wear breathable undergarments. Under Armor tops, tights, stockings, and hats are some examples.
They keep you cool and dry while posing no further troubles for the costume cleaning process afterwards.
This article has addressed critical tactics on how to clean a fursuit.
More detailed procedures vary across the specific textile and suit designs, but there is no doubt that these tips would preserve your costumes for years to come.
Feel free to reach us for more clarifications (if any)!