Cleaning Guides

How to Clean Velvet Upholstery

Velvet upholstery gives a sofa a more luxurious appearance than ordinary fabrics. The best way to clean velvet is to dry clean it or spot-clean it with a non-water-based solvent cleaner. We have compiled a list of tips for cleaning velvet and how to clean velvet upholstery furniture without damaging it.

So, if you:

  • Have velvet furniture that needs to be cleaned;
  • Want to know how to clean a velvet sofa without damaging it;
  • Wondering how to remove stains from velvet furniture;

Keep reading!

How to clean a velvet sofa and stains

Check the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions first. Moreover, you should check whether the velvet is made from synthetic fibres, silk fibres, or cotton fibres. Synthetic fibres are much more stain-resistant than cotton and silk.

The cleaning steps below might not work for hard-to-remove stains, such as ink, blood stains, nail polish, paint, machine oil, etc. We advise you to consult with a professional before attempting to clean such stains.

Before we begin, a few quick reminders:

  • Always treat stains as soon as you can, as the longer they stay on the couch, the more they will set in and become difficult to remove. Cleaning dry stains is much harder and often, it may be even impossible to scrub them off.
  • Read the wash care label before attempting to clean any stains. Velvet is a delicate fabric and cleaning it improperly may result in permanent damage. Always test on an invisible area, first.

How to remove stains from velvet furniture

Nothing is more luxurious and elegant than velvet furniture, but it can be tricky to clean. Therefore, remove stains immediately to prevent permanent damage to velvet upholstery. To remove stains from velvet furniture, follow these steps:

  1. The first step is to vacuum the velvet upholstery. The key to maintaining velvet upholstery is regular dusting and vacuuming. A soft brush is best for removing surface dirt from velvet fabric. If you use a carpet cleaner vacuum on velvet, always read the instructions and test a small area first.
  2. The second step is to use absorbent cloths to clean up spills. Put a few paper towels or an absorbent cloth on the affected area when you notice a fresh spill on your velvet sofa or couch. Cleaning stains using an absorbent cloth is easy because it soaks up stains effectively and will not leave marks on velvet. When you spill something on your velvet couch, don’t rub it on. Leave the absorbent cloth on it for up to 10 minutes to stop the stains from spreading.
  3. The best DIY cleaning solution that you can use on your velvet furniture is distilled water mixed with soap. Test the cleaning solution on a small area of the velvet sofa or chair to ensure it will not damage or discolour the material.
  4. Apply the cleaning solution to the stained area of the velvet sofa without soaking it.
  5. Gently brush the fabric’s nap toward the pile with a soft-bristled velvet brush. Surface dirt and stains can be removed this way.
  6. Allow the fabric to air dry completely. Hair dryers and other heat sources should not be used to accelerate drying.

You may need to repeat the cleaning process or consider hiring a professional upholstery cleaner if the stain is particularly stubborn.

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Can you clean velvet with a steam cleaner?

It is common to steam-clean velvet furniture. However, before steaming velvet furniture, check its care instructions. There are different cleaning codes for velvet upholstery fabrics. 

  • Some of them have an S code, indicating they are only suitable for a dry-cleaning solvent. 
  • The code W indicates that this velvet upholstery do well with water-based cleaners. So you can safely use the steam treatment on a couch with this code. 
  • The X code indicates that a vacuum or a brush with a soft bristle is the only way to clean this velvet upholstery type. You should not use any water or cleaning solutions on this fabric.

How do you protect velvet furniture?

As we’ve mentioned above, velvet is easily damaged. So, here are two simple ways to protect the fabric from discolouration or untimely wear and tear:

  • Place protective covers on your velvet furniture to reduce the effects of everyday use;
  • Make sure that no direct sunlight shines upon the velvet, as this will cause your furniture to fade prematurely. You can use traditional curtains or blinds or apply a UV protection film to your windows.

How often to clean velvet furniture

We advise that you get your velvet furniture professionally cleaned every six to nine months, so you can ensure that the fabric keeps its colour and softness for longer. When it comes to cleaning stains, it is best to trust the help of professional upholstery cleaners who know how to treat each stain properly.

If you want to have your velvet professionally cleaned with the right tools and experience, give us a call or book online anytime!

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  • Velvet can be made from natural materials, such as silk or cotton, or synthetic fibres, like polyester.
  • Synthetic velvet can easily be cleaned at home, whereas the natural kind requires professional care.
  • Protect your velvet furniture by limiting exposure to direct sunlight.
  • Always read the wash care label and test your chosen cleaning method on an inconspicuous area first.
  • You can make a cleaning solution using household products.
  • Aim to get your velvet furniture cleaned every 6-9 months to prolong its life.


If you found this article useful, don’t forget to share it with friends and family. And you can always leave a comment below if you have any questions or want to share your experience.

Image source: Depositphotos: by VadimVasenin

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