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Can You Put Baseball Caps in the Washer? (Quick Answers)

Baseball caps roll in the ground, drop in the dirt and soak up all that sweat after a good game with the boys. This only means that these caps deserve a good washing before they can be worn the next time.

Due to the structure of the cap, many people prefer handwashing it. However, few wish to put the cap into the washer for a quick clean. The question is, is its safe?

Putting baseball caps in the washer

Though you can put a baseball cap in the washer with a pillowcase covering it, and the washer running on a gentle cycle, it may ruin the structure of the baseball cap. Baseball caps with brims can be damaged due to the jerking, collision, and water pressure. Scrubbing & hand cleaning are preferable.

Baseball caps have a lot of dirt and gunk in them that need a good washing. With that mentioned, indeed, the buildup on baseball caps would only go away completely with a thorough and diligent cleaning.

This would precisely include scrubbing and handwashing until all the dirt is off the cap. Many wonders if baseball caps can also be tossed into the dishwasher or washing machine.

While you can do it, there is no guarantee that the cap would come out in the shape it previously was.

Mainly due to the brim of the cap which holds a structure, it is advised that baseball caps should only be hand-washed.

Baseball caps, whatever material they are made of, should not go through the same washing and drying cycles as usual as our usual clothes in the washer.

All the tumbling of the cap, friction, and collision with another load will damage the shape of the cap. Baseball caps that are too dirty should be soaked in pre-treatment so that some of the hard gunk is off.

Before putting it into the washer, it is important to put a covering on the cap, like a pillowcase. In the washer, cold water and a gentle cycle are what would be the two essentials. Remember to not let the cap go through rinsing and drying cycles.

Other than that, any direct heat from the dryer or sunlight could damage the cap as well.

The best option, although time-consuming, would be to scrub and handwash the cap in mild soapy water. If the brim of the cap is made out of cardboard, be sure to never put it into the washer.

Keep the brim out of the water as the cardboard may soak the water and become soft to breakage.

Is it safe?

Washing your baseball cap in the washer is not the wisest or safest decision since it might damage the structure of your cap.

The excessive water and tumbling, not of it being beneficial to the cap. The water pressure, as well as the tumbling and friction, may ruin the structure of the cap completely.

This would particularly happen if the cap is input into the washer in full cycles, including rinsing, spinning, and drying.

However, if you have no time to handwash a baseball cap, you would first need to know how to properly wash a baseball cap in the washer to not ruin the accessory.

A lot of baseball caps have brims that are made of cardboard. While that’s great to hold the structure of the cap, making it hard and long lasting, the problem starts when it comes to cleaning the baseball cap.

When the brim is made of cardboard, there are chances that the board might become soft when it comes in contact with water. This would mean that the softened brim would break easily

What baseball caps can go in the washer?

Baseball caps are made of several different materials, with all having a basic shape and a hard brim.

Although putting baseball caps in the washer is not safe for the shape of the cap, some caps for their material construction to better in the washer than others. In most baseball caps, you would find tags that indicate whether the cap is safe to put into the washer.

Here are baseball caps that can go into the washer, given you wash the cap with the right guidelines.

Cotton material caps:

Caps made of cotton materials are safe to put into the washer as long as you use cold water and a single gentle cycle.

However, you may want to read the tag since there are grades of cotton used in caps. Some cotton will shrink when put into the washer while others would not be affected. Cotton blends such as cotton and polyester can also go in the washer.

Brims with plastic caps:

Caps that have brims made of plastic, high density polyethylene, or resin fiber.

Nevertheless, the structural integrity of the cap may be compromised if the cap is not put into a pillowcase. The baseball caps with cardboard brims should never be put into the washing machine.

How do you wash a baseball cap in a washer?

For that, you would first need to find out if the cap brim is made of materials that soften or break on water contact. If not, you may want to follow the steps below:

Use pretreatment:

If your cap is made of cotton or any other synthetic material and requires a good cleaning, use a pre treatment in the form of a stain remover and keep it for about 20 to 30 minutes.

The stain remover should not contain anything abrasive like bleach.

Use mild detergent:

For the detergent, again you would need to use something mild and one that does not contain bleach. Baseball caps and their brims do not fair well when treated with harsher soaps.


You would not want to put the baseball cap, no matter what material or shape it is made of. Hence you must get a covering for the cap before you toss it in the laundry.

A pillowcase always works to get the job done. If you are going a step forward and have a laundry bag to put the cap on, that would also work. 

Cold water rinse:

Now on to the washer settings. It is imperative that the washer is set to release cold water only. Washing the cap with hot water, no matter how gently, would cause fading.

One cycle:

The hat would only go through one cycle in the washer. Let the washer, along with the other load with the cap, wash through the gentlest cycle on the settings.

Once the cycle is over, you would want to remove the cap from the washer before it goes on to other cycles.

Air dry:

Without using any type of hair dryer or dryer, let the baseball cap air dry. You can put the cap in a rack to dry it over time. Use a towel under the cap and Keep the cap away from sunlight.

How to clean baseball caps with a cardboard bill?

It is important to know how to wash baseball caps with cardboard bills without ruining them.

Since they are made of cardboard, incorrectly washing them may damage the cardboard irreversibly. Here is what you need to do:

Gather scrubbing tool:

To begin with you would need a scrubbing tool. For scrubbing, you would either get a toothbrush that you already have lying around, or you could get a soft bristle brush.

It’s better to not use any hard scrubber for the job.

Cold water and detergent solution:

Next, prepare a solution of cold water with a detergent that is mild. Dip the toothbrush in the solution and test it out on one of the smaller stains.

If the detergent is too abrasive, you would notice lingering discoloration. If so, change the detergent to a milder one.

Scrub stain:

Now slowly, scrub off each stain, circularly moving your brush. You may want to use soft touches if your baseball call is an old one.

Since this is the step that takes off most of the dirt, you would need to be patient and vigilant with the scrubbing.

Blot the stain:

Following that, you would need a napkin using which you would blot the stains you have just scrubbed. Here it is crucial to blot with pressure that gets rid of the dirt.

Keep the brim out of water:

Keeping the brim out of the water, rinse the detergent off by dipping the rest of the hat into cold water. Once all the soap is rinsed, shake off all the water. Now let the cap dry in a rack.

Final Thoughts

Putting a baseball cap in the washer is not considered to be safe since the high volume and pressure, as well as, the tumbling and friction can damage the baseball cap. Baseball caps which particularly have cardboard brims should not be put into the washer.