How to Starch Police Uniforms at Home

by Simone Watts

Present a professional image with a starched uniform

Siri Stafford/Lifesize/Getty Images

Presenting a professional image is mandatory for police officers. The uniform is easily recognizable and usually the first thing people notice -- particularly in emergency situations -- so it is important to keep it looking clean and sharp. Using spray-on starch and an iron at home, you can wear your uniform with pride.

Purchase a can of starch spray at a grocery store or department store.

Wash and dry your uniform. Do not use a fabric softener. Doing so will produce limp clothing that is harder to starch.

Plug in your iron and set it on a low to medium heat. Turn the knob to level three or four, or place it on the cotton setting, depending on the type of iron you have. Make sure that the steam setting is switched off as added moisture will make starching difficult.

Place the shirt lengthwise on the ironing board so that one half is on top of the board and the other half is draped over the side. Spray starch two inches from the shirt, covering the whole area. Place the can of starch to the side and begin ironing shirt, using short strokes.

Flip the shirt to the reverse side, lay it on the ironing board and spray starch again. Iron, using short strokes. When the shirt looks crisp, repeat the process for the other half.

Iron the sleeves by laying the shirt flat on the ironing board and following the seam from the shoulder. Spray starch and iron both sides of each sleeve until they have a stiff crease.

Iron the collar by laying it open side up on the ironing board and so that the tips face away from you. Spray starch and iron collar in short strokes.

Iron pants by laying them flat lengthwise on the ironing board. Start by starching and ironing the pocket until it is flat. Spray starch on the leg and iron in a smooth back and forth motion. Flip the pants over and repeat, applying pressure to create a sharp crease down the front of both legs.

Photo Credits

  • Siri Stafford/Lifesize/Getty Images

About the Author

Simone Watts has written for television, radio and print titles including "SPIN" and "Village Voice" since 2004. Based in New York City, she holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Columbia College Chicago.