How To Clean A Mascot
Taking proper care of your mascot costume is the best way to protect your investment. Ultimately you should designate an area to hang, store, and dry the costume. This area should be equipped with fans, a 50/50 mix of water and vodka in a spray bottle, and a repair kit (full list of repair kit supplies below). Our costume bodies are machine washable, however the more you wash the costume, the more it will show wear. If you have multiple performers, the body and padding should be washed whenever a new performer is putting on the costume. If you only have one performer, your best bet is to properly air out the costume as much as possible and wash the costume when necessary.
In order to properly care for your costume…
- PUT THE COSTUME IN THE DRYER! EVER! Synthetic fur is made of plastic. Plastic melts when you heat it. A fur costume thrown in the dryer will become a nappy ball of short, crisp, melted fur. Countless costumes have been ruined by untrained people cleaning the costume. Don’t let this happen to your suit!
- SPRAY ANY CLEANING AGENT IN THE HEAD, other than a 50/50 mix of water and Vodka. Products such as Febreeze and Lysol will stick in the fur, and then leak out into the performer’s eyes once he/she begins to sweat. The water/vodka mix kills germs and odor without leaving behind harmful elements.
- STORE A WET COSTUME IN A BAG/BOX! Your costume must be dry before you store it. If not, the wet costume will grow mold and other bacteria putting the performer’s health in danger and creating a very stinky costume.
- DRY CLEAN YOUR COSTUME! It just sprays a layer of chemicals over the suit, failing to provide proper cleaning.
- DRY OUT YOUR COSTUME AFTER AN APPEARANCE. Hang up the body and direct a fan at it. For faster results, drape the body over a fan, allowing the air to circulate inside the costume. Put the head on top of or next to a fan. A head is very hard to clean and the best way to keep it stink free is to dry it off as soon as possible.
- WASH HIGH WEAR COSTUME PIECES OFTEN. Hands are the part of the costume that gets dirty the fastest. Jerseys as well. Both can easily be washed in a washing machine and hung to dry.
- SPOT CLEAN YOUR HEAD/SHOES: Use a spray on spot cleaner that can be rubbed in and rinsed out.
- WASH YOUR COSTUME BETWEEN PERFORMERS. It is not healthy to wear a costume that has not been cleaned. A program that utilizes multiple performers should wash costumes whenever a different performer uses the suit. For this reason it is beneficial to have multiple costumes or parts.
- MACHINE WASH YOUR COSTUME. Put it in a large washer using the gentle cycle and cold water. It is best to use a washer without an agitator as it can tear the costume. A double/triple load washer at the laundromat is ideal. Do not use too much detergent. For extra softness and scent add liquid fabric softener during the rinse cycle. Allow several hours for the costume to hang dry.
- CLEAN YOUR HEAD. Heads are hard to clean thoroughly. Your best bet is to spray a 50/50 mix of water and vodka inside the head. Let it sit for a few minutes, then wipe out any excess liquid. Place on a fan to dry. To clean the whole head (do not do this to paper mache or fiberglass heads) submerge it in a bathtub. Scrub a delicate detergent on the fur. Rinse thoroughly and allow to dry. A full head cleaning is time consuming. You can put this off by using the 50/50 spray, making sure to air your head out on a fan, and spot cleaning dirt on the fur.
To enable you to make minor repairs on your costume, put together a repair kit. It should include the following:
- Curved quilting needles. The curved needles are much easier to use on oddly shaped mascot costumes
- Thread. Match your fur color
- Safety pins. Great for temporary fixes
- Contact cement. Great for fixing shoe soles and foam parts of the costume. If you use contact cement in your mascot head, make sure to air it out properly (several hours on a fan)
- Hot glue gun. Great for temporary fixes. Does not last long on shoes or plastic.
- Duct tape. You’ll find a use.
- Additional chinstraps. In case something happens.
At AMAZING!! Mascots we put a lot of time and effort into creating the best possible mascot for you. Make sure your costume continues to look great by caring for it in the proper manner. With mascot programs, you get out what you put in.
Stay fuzzy my friends~ Kelly Frank, President, AMAZING!! Mascots, Inc
Custom mascots and more! AMAZING!! Mascots, Inc.