How to Clean Fabric Chairs

You can clean your fabric chairs with a vacuum cleaner, special cleaning product, homemade solution, or a steamer if you have one at home. The following tips should help you find out how to clean fabric chairs easily.

You should begin the cleaning with a vacuum. It removes all the dirt on and under the chair’s fabric. Then, depending on the dirt and the upholster’s material, you continue cleaning the fabric’s surface with a cleaning product, homemade soda-based solution, or a steamer for the best results.

You decide which cleaning product will be used for cleaning the chair’s fabric. Generally, it depends on what you can find in the stores around you and what type of dirt you need to clean from the fabric. Also, the fabric type plays a huge role in determining which cleaning option to choose.

How to Clean Fabric Chairs

How to Clean Fabric Chairs?

If you want to clean your fabric chairs at home, you can try using some in-store bought products or make some at home. To determine what kind of cleaning product you need to clean your fabric chairs, you should determine the upholster’s material and the dirt you want to remove from it.

The following techniques and products should help you clean the dirt from the chair’s fabric.

But, before starting, you must pay attention to the following rules:

  1. If you opt for an in-store bought cleaning product, try it on a fabric area that is not so visible. It is best to test the product to see if it is good and would not damage the upholster’s material.
  2. Light chair material should be cleaned with a white towel or fabric to prevent color transfer.
  3. Do not vacuum chairs with sensitive materials.
  4. Do not use chemical-based cleaning products on sensitive or animal materials.
  5. Do not use cleaning products that contain bleach or other similar chemicals.

Vacuum cleaner

Most upholstery materials should be initially vacuumed with a vacuum cleaner. The vacuum will take off all the loose dirt and dust that has lent on the chair’s surface. Vacuuming the chairs might prevent additional dust and dirt from accumulating on the upholstery and make further cleaning more difficult.

Before taking the vacuum cleaner to vacuum the chairs, check the chairs’ manual and materials to ensure that they can be cleaned with a vacuum. Some fabrics and sensitive materials might be damaged if vacuumed, so be careful.

Also, check your vacuum accessories and choose the upholstery attachment if you have one. It is not recommended to use the same attachment you use for vacuuming the floor because it might only add more dirt to the chair’s fabric.

Cleaning products

You can find a lot of cleaning products in the local market. You can even purchase some from amazon for a quite affordable price. But, when choosing a detergent or powdered cleaning product, read its label to ensure it would not damage the chair’s fabric or fade its color.

Avoid products that contain bleach because they might damage the upholstery’s color.

Dish soap

The dish soap is a safe product that might help you remove stains and dirt from fabric chairs. The dish soap does not contain dangerous chemicals that might damage the fabric, but it is good to check the chair’s label before putting any cleaning solution on it. Some fabrics should be cleaned by a professional cleaning service because of the material’s sensitivity.

Mix dish soap and hydrogen peroxide and pour the mixture into a spray bottle. Spray the solution on the previously vacuumed upholstery and let it sit for a couple of minutes. Get a wet microfiber towel, cloth, or a rag and gently rub the stained area.

Allow the upholstery fabric to dry for at least 24 hours. The dish soap might help you clean some surface stains of spilled drinks, food, and even oily stains. This fabric chair cleaning option is affordable and present in almost all households.


OxiClean is a popular stain remover that might successfully remove any stain from clothes. Its safe formula might help you with cleaning fabric chairs, too. OxiClean comes in multiple shapes, sizes, and conditions, just perfect to help you keep your home and clothes clean and fresh.

For upholstery cleanse, it might be best to choose the liquid OxiClean products. You can go with the powder, too, if you already have it at home. If you don’t have any OxiClean products at home, it might be best to choose the OxiClean Laundry Stain Remover spray or some liquid ones.

The stain remover spray should be sprayed on a damp towel or rag, not directly on the chair’s fabric. After you add the OxiClean to the towel, blot the stain on the chair’s fabric with medium-intensity pressure.

After blotting, dampen a clean towel in warm water and rinse the cleaned area. Let the chair dry before the next usage.

Other cleaning products

If you have another stain-removing product at home, you can try to clean your fabric chairs with it. No matter what product you choose, do not add it directly to the fabric. Spraying a cleaning solution on the fabric might absorb the fabric and would not give you the desired cleaning results.

For deeper cleaning, you can order a Multi-purpose carpet and upholstery cleaner device from Amazon. This might be a pricier solution, but it might be good because you will have it at home and clean everything you want whenever you want. Often, these devices are something like a water vacuum cleaner and might give you a deeper clean effect on the furniture.

You can try it with other sprays and powders different from OxiClean. For example, you might go on with InstaClean stain remover, professional stain-removing sprays, dry rug, and furniture cleaners, and leather clean and protect milk and oils.

Homemade cleaning solutions

Baking soda can be an excellent cleaning product, especially when it comes to removing stains and dirt from fabric and clothes. Combined with acids, the baking soda makes a reaction that might increase the cleaning intensity and stain removal.

Mix 1 teaspoon of soda with 50 ml white vinegar and 500ml water in a bowl. Dampen a soft cloth or towel into the mixture and gently rub the chair’s fabric surface. The vinegar will neutralize the odor and kill the bacteria.


Cleaning fabric chairs with a steamer might be the best option. With the steamer, you can surely kill a large number of the bacteria and microbes that live on the chair’s fabric and underneath it. The steamer is a multi-purpose device that might help you clean and disinfect the whole house.

When using a steamer, it is best to set the furniture cleaning attachment or place a clean white towel on the steamer if you don’t have a special attachment. This tip will keep part of the steam on the towel while only a tiny steam amount will enter the chair’s fabric.

Between the steaming, you can use some of the methods mentioned above to remove some stubborn stains.

Cleaning Techniques Based on the Chairs Fabric

Cleaning Techniques Based on the Chair’s Fabric

Vinyl chairs

For routine cleaning, vinyl chairs should be cleaned with warm water and a mild soap mixture. For deeper stains, you can use hydrogen peroxide. Dip a clean white towel into the water and soap mixture and wipe the chairs once in two weeks to remove the dust and dirt from the surface.

Microfiber chairs

Microfiber fabric attracts a lot of particles. So, you must clean microfiber chairs more often than any other materials. For microfiber and chair cleanses you should use a cleaning brush and dish soap. You should scrub the stained area until the stains are completely varnished. Do not press the brush with high intensity because you might damage the fabric.

After cleaning, use a wet towel to rinse the excess soap from the fabric. Let the chair dry before use.

Dining chairs

Dining chairs are often exposed to dirt since we generally eat in the dining room. Also, the dining room is more formal, and most of us choose more elegant fabrics that often match the surroundings and the interior style.

Because these fabrics are more sensitive, you should be very careful when using cleaning products. Synthetic fabrics (short pile velvet, polyester) are simple to clean, and you can easily remove food and drink stains.

Leather and suede chairs

Leather chairs should be cleaned with a wet towel and soft detergent. Pour warm water into a bowl and add liquid dish soap. The quantity of the mixture should match the number of chairs you need to clean with it.

On the other side, suede chairs can be vacuumed before the wet cleanse. For the wet cleaning of the suede chairs, you should start wiping the chair with a damp microfiber towel. For the stained areas on the suede fabric chairs, make a mixture of 120 ml of white vinegar and 120 ml of water. If you need larger amounts of this mixture, keep the ratio 1:1.

Dip soft fabric cloth into the mixture and gently rub the stained areas. Add leather conditioning products to the chair to give it greater longevity.

Chenille chairs

Chenille is a dense and resistant material with a pleasant texture. Chenille fabric lasts longer and does not fade even in the long term. But you should be highly careful with this material when it comes to cleaning.

It is best to vacuum the chenille upholstery to remove all loose traces and dirt from its surface. A dish soap and water mixture should be used in extreme cases when you need to remove a stubborn or colored stain.

If you want to refresh your chenille chairs and clean them from the dirt, it is best to call a professional cleaning service. Don’t try to clean the chenille chairs with a steamer because the material is sensitive and might damage at high temperatures.

Silk chairs

Silk chairs are often present in bedrooms or other luxury corners of the house. They might be rare, but anyway, they might be waiting somewhere to be cleaned up. If you are searching for silk chair cleaning tips and products, we might help you out.

Silk requires special treatment since it is quite sensitive material. To clean up the dirt and stains from a silk chair upholstery, you should try it with a water and white vinegar mixture. The ratio should be 1 tsp of vinegar in 1 liter of water.

Avoid using soap or other chemical-based products on silk fabric. They contain alkalic and aggressive traces that might cause damage to the silk surface. You can use the water and vinegar solution with a tiny amount of dish soap or soft laundry detergent in extreme cases when you have to remove a stubborn stain.

Check the Label on the Chair

Most chairs come with a sticker label under the seat. On the label, the seller has put some letters that point to the cleaning method you should choose for cleaning the chair’s fabric upholstery.

  • W – this letter stands for water-based agent cleaning. If you see this sign on the chair’s label, you should use distilled water and cleaning foam.
  • WS – in this case, you can use water-based agents, cleaning foam, or mild detergents. It is recommended to use distilled water because minerals in tap water might cause fading rings on the fabric.
  • S – if your chair has the letter S on the label, you should not clean the chair in parts or add water. You should clean it only with water-free solvents.
  • X – the X stands for dry cleaning. You can vacuum the chair and brush off the loose dirt but never use water or detergents to clean it. If you need deep cleaning, you should give your chairs to a dry cleaning professional.


We hope this article has helped you find out how to clean fabric chairs. Each material requires different treatment, and we did our best to find a cleaning solution for most of them. If you feel unsure about cleaning the fabric chairs at home, let a professional do that instead.

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