8 Wardrobe Mysteries, Solved

meghann-stephenson-man-repeller-wardrobe-tips
Amelia Diamond | February 9, 2016

They should be obvious…but aren’t.

Contrary to what our parents told us, Google has made it such that there actually are stupid questions, because no answer is more embarrassing than the one that implies you could have looked it up yourself.

Endlessly comforting, however, is the realization that as you’re typing in, “Where exactly is my navel and how is it different than my belly button,” at least a trillion other people have clearly searched the same thing. Ten bucks says the query populated the second you typed the “W” in “where.”

…But what if you don’t know that you don’t know the answer to a question? How are you supposed to muster the bravery to ask the Internet something (let alone a real and potentially judge-y person) if you thought you knew all along?!

Enough of the brain twisters, terror and confusion. Here are 8 obvious things you may not know you don’t even know as compiled by team MR, and guess what? They’re all about clothes.

Scroll on…

  • PSA to EVERYONE WHO OWNS A SPORT COAT OR BLAZERYou are supposed to cut the white thead that makes an "X" on the jacket's vents. Those are not festive decorations.
  • My Big Fat Greek Dad was right: The best way to remove smudges on patent leather? Windex.
  • The bad idea that everyone's had at least once, usually out of laziness...

    Do not use a steamer on clothes while on your body. It will burn you.
  • Girl Scout's Honor: If you don't have a steamer or an iron, a hair straightener works quite well. (But note: the prior rule applies. Do NOT attempt to iron clothes still on your body. Take 'em of. Who doesn't like a minute of nudity?)
  • No steamer or straightener present, but you've got a dress more wrinkled than a nose near a bad smell? Leave your shirt hanging in the bathroom while the shower steams up the room. It works remarkably well.
  • For every "No Shit, Sherlock" there is someone who didn't know: You are supposed to peel the plastic off of silver/gold hardware like buttons, zippers and buckles. The plastic's just on there to keep it shiny and new until you take it home.
  • Keep your trouser pockets shut. 

    Yes, you can open the pockets of your pants if they come sealed shut, but, if you do leave the stitching sealed up, pants will fit/fall better on your silhouette.
  • Lock It Up: If you push your zipper-pull flat against the zipper, it will lock in the teeth so that it doesn't accidentally unzip.

    Have another tip? You know where the jar is.

Illustration by Meghann Stephenson. You can follow Meghann on Instagram and Tumblr.

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  • LP

    The X stitch on the sport coat is my biggest pet peeve! Also remove the label on the sleeve of your coat or suit. No need to let us all know it’s calvin klein.

    • Krista Anna Lewis

      Maybe I’m just a noob, but labels come up coat sleeves too?

      • Aydan

        and scarves sometimes too!! Nothing annoys me more!

    • My mother showed me at a very young age how to remove labels with a seam ripper. They are super cheap, and so much safer for your clothes than trying to remove tags with scissors (yes, I’ve cut holes in scarves before doing that)!

      Oh yeah, and she also taught me that anything you truly want to keep in good condition NEVER goes in the dryer. Ever.

    • Adriana

      I agree! This is my biggest pet peeve as well. Applies to skirts with slits and pleats as well.

  • Andrea Raymer

    Also,If doing the shower steam thing,if you are running the water but arent actually taking a shower DONT FORGET TO TURN THE SHOWER OFF! my uncle used this tip and forgot about it before going away for the weekend and when they got back the paint had peeled off the walls and the door to the bathroom had swollen shut from all the moisture.

    • Jen

      Actually please don’t just run the water without taking a shower. How incredibly wasteful

      • Amelia Diamond

        kill 2 birds with one stone and get in there! it’s a good time to shave deep condition exfoliate and floss

    • Amelia Diamond

      omg good call

  • Would any other window cleaner work on patent leather or only Windex?

    • Yvonne Dunlevie

      Maria! I am actually not sure about other window cleaners, but I have also red that white vinegar works. I very nice shoes salesman gave me this tip in college.

  • HeatherS

    Basic rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab also works a treat on patent leather scuffs!

  • Setting aside my embarrassment for hopefully the greater good by sharing this:

    Several of my coats had what I thought was just an appearance of pockets, but in fact became true pockets once I cut out the thread sewing them shut! My hands have never been so happy.

  • l:ly

    how do i fix the gap on button ups tho

    • Amelia Diamond

      like by your boobs? we’re working on a story about this..

      • l:ly

        I’M READY

      • A mystery with a twist ending, no doubt!

      • Igor Maciel Vida

        double-sided adhesive tape? I had a chubby boyfriend and I used this tip with/on him and it worked =P

        • Igor Maciel Vida

          But, yeah, he did not have actual boobs tho =(

    • I just hand sew the shirt closed by the buttons that gap. Follow the existing stitching and no one will notice. It may not seem like it, but you can generally put those shirts on over your head

      basic idea:
      https://dreamsewing.wordpress.com/2011/09/24/sewing-trick-of-the-day-gaping-blousepopped-buttons/

      • l:ly

        upvote to save a life

    • AbigailatSea

      I use that “hollywood fashion tape”, or just double-sided scotch tape when I run out of the fancy stuff.

    • Meredith Molino

      double stick is one way

  • Julie Meowmeows

    If you get deodorant on your shirt, rub the shirt together in the spot where the stain is. The deodorant usually disappears.

  • Jayne

    I always use hairspray and a towel to get off stains on clothes that have just appeared, it nearly always works!

    electraviolet.co.uk

    • I never tried this, I’ll have to keep it in mind

  • Karebear

    To un-wrinkle clothes in a hurry, I spritz item with linen spray, lay flat, “iron” with my hands, and wear it while its still slightly damp (gravity helps). To remove deodorant stains just wipe with a pair of stockings or socks!

  • I mention the flat iron one in a post I wrote a while back actually. It’s a life saver.

    http://thefauxparisian.com/2016/01/21/revitalize-your-wardrobe

    As for the “X” on the back of my coats, I had no idea that I was supposed to cut those until my mother in law was like “oh, you forgot to cut the string off the back of your coat, here let me. I’ve forgotten to do that before too” and I’m just thinking to myself “how many years have people noticed and never said anything….does everyone know about this?”

  • Madeline

    BUY A SWEATER SHAVER & your life will be changed forever! Those pesky sweater pills, be gone. –> http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/clothing/fabric-pill-removers/a18577/best-fabric-pill-removers/

  • dré

    I love these! Thanks for the share! These were great!
    xo dré

    http://www.flightoffeather.com

  • Bob Cut Mag

    You can use peanut butter to get off sticker residue from the bottom of new shoes. Leave it on for a minute and then wipe it off with a clean cotton flannel.

    Time to stock up on Jif, amirite?.

    – Anthony

    • Okay this is life changing info

      • Amelia Diamond

        agree