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Woman explains what dry cleaning actually is and people are legitimately shocked

“They really take the buttons off of every shirt?”

laundry; dry cleaning; tiktok; dry cleaning explained; Melissa Pateras

Melissa Pateras explains how dry cleaning works.


Have you ever wondered what happens at the dry cleaners? Or are you like me, who just assumed the people at the dry cleaners were wizards and never questioned their magic? Turns out, dry cleaners aren't magic and there's actually a pretty interesting explanation of how they came to be and what they do.

Melissa Pateras is known on Tiktok for her laundry knowledge. Seriously, her ability to fold laundry is hypnotizing. This time, she created a video explaining what actually takes place at the dry cleaner and the internet is aghast.

Before Pateras explained what happens in the mysterious world behind the counter of a dry cleaner, she asked a few of her friends what they thought dry cleaning was. Their answers were...interesting to say the least.

One friend surmised, "You put it in a box, right...and then you let some wind, really fast wind, blow around on your clothes and it wipes off all the dirt." The friend, whose username is @unlearn16, continued with her working hypothesis, saying that the clothes are then blasted with infrared heat to sterilize the garments. While that is certainly an interesting theory, that's not what happens.


Another friend guessed, "Dry cleaning is when they take all of your dirty clothes into this big dryer with a clean sheet that sticks all of the dirt to it from your dirty clothes." This friend was also incorrect, and Pateras finally explained why after her friends dug deep into their brains for their best guesses.

Turns out dry cleaning was invented by accident when Jean-Baptiste Jolly spilled a kerosene lamp on his tablecloth, which dried cleaner than it was previously, according to Pateras.

The laundry guru explained that while it was dangerous, the practice of cleaning things with kerosene continued until a less flammable method was discovered. But even the safer method is still fairly harsh, which is why dry cleaners take buttons off of clothing before running them through, she says.

This prompted one commenter to ask, "They really take the buttons off of every shirt?" to which Pateras replied that it only occurs if the buttons won't withstand the chemicals.

If you've ever been curious about what happens at the dry cleaner, watch the video below. She takes you through each step.

@melissadilkespateras

What is dry cleaning #laundry #laundrytok #drycleaning #funfacts @Tracy Taylor @Unlearn16 @Ana Pac @Ashley Mathieu @Li

This article originally appeared on 5.10.23

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