how to iron a guayabera

How to iron your guayabera?

7 min read

Would you like to know how to iron your guayabera? Which side to start with? The collar? The sleeves? We'll show you that it's easier than it looks. You can iron your guayabera in under 10 minutes.

Here are our tips for fast, efficient ironing. Fast ironing in 10 steps Ironing a man's guayabera is often a trial of strength for many people, when in reality it's not as complicated as it seems.

There are a few tricks to know and, above all, a habit to get into. Persevere, and after 2 or 3 ironing sessions, you'll be well on your way, and perhaps you'll even find some form of satisfaction.

steps to iron a guayabera


Tip #1: The iron

Invest in a quality iron with a clean soleplate. It's an essential investment. Turn your iron on in advance to ensure it's warm and doesn't "spit" on your guayaberas when you first steam them.

The guayabera body

We'll start by ironing the body of the guayabera, i.e. the left side, the back and then the right side in that order, sliding it around the ironing board. Make sure your iron is hot, so that it steams when you press the steam button. And off you go!

Step #1

Start with the left side (1), threading the sleeve through the rounding of the ironing board.

The guayabera is set and you can now iron this first panel, from the side seam to the buttonholes at the throat and bottom hem, to the seam at the collar and armhole.

Check that the fabric returning to the wrong side of the throat where the buttonholes are located is flat and not folded over on itself.

Step #2

Slide the guayabera around the ironing board. The panel you've just ironed hangs in the gap in front of you, the side seam that was against the opposite edge of the table is now against the edge where you stand.

You're now tackling the back of the guayabera (2), which is relatively easy to iron in 3 steps. If you have ease pleats on the back, you can use the same method as for the sleeve pleats. Iron them in the air with the steam, not on the table.

Steps #3, 4 and 5

Slide the guayabera again to iron the back to the opposite side seam (3 - 4).

Finally, iron the right front panel (5), locating the armhole in the rounding of the table as previously seen, and proceed in the same way.

Be careful with the buttons. Don't iron over them, or they may break in the long run. As far as possible, avoid bringing the iron into contact with the seams of the buttons. If you do, the thread on the seam foot (under the button) may break and your buttons will fall off, one after the other.

Step #6

Last but not least, the back yoke (6) is the part between the seam between the shoulders and the collar.

This part can be more complex to iron, and in this case needs to be wedged on the ironing board tip.

Slide the guayabera from right to left shoulder to iron this yoke independently of the rest.

Tip #2: A hot iron

This may seem obvious, but just in case.... set your iron to "cotton", the hottest setting.

Sleeves of the guayabera

They can be ironed before, after or at the same time as the body of the guayabera. It's up to you to decide which method suits you best.

Steps #7 and 8

Lay the first sleeve (7) flat on the ironing board. No need to button the wrist. Using your hands, make sure the sleeve is flat, with no creases on either the top or bottom, as you are now ironing 2 layers of fabric.

Place your iron pointing towards the armhole and rotate it from right to left to iron along the rounded seam at the top of the sleeve.

Then turn the iron over and iron down to the wrist in the same way, oscillating from right to left. When you reach the folds at the bottom of the sleeve (those sewn into the cuff), lift the cuff up with your free hand.

The iron moves gently up to the wrist, it's no longer in contact with the table, steam passes easily through the sleeve, and you don't mark any creases in this delicate area.

The other advantage of ironing the lower sleeve in this way is that you avoid burning the upper fabric at the button seam of the sleeve placket below. If you keep ironing over this seam, you'll end up piercing the fabric at this point. In fact, the protrusion of the stitching on this button creates an asperity when ironing, which damages the opposite part of the sleeve.

We don't recommend marking the folds between shoulder and wrist. It's not aesthetic and not essential unless you want to store your folded guayabera. To make it easier to iron the sleeve without marking the side folds from top to bottom, use a sleeve ironing board, also known as a "Jeannette".

These miniature ironing boards allow you to slide a sleeve around and iron it impeccably without side creases. Do the same with the other sleeve (8).

Tip #3: Drying

Don't leave your guayabera at the bottom of the washing machine once you've finished. It will dry as it is and mark the creases. Take the guayabera out at the end of the wash cycle, still damp, and let the fabric relax on a hanger.

The washing machine isn't the only way to get your guayabera as clean and beautiful as the first day. There are several techniques we've detailed in a dedicated article for washing your guayabera like a pro.

The collar of the guayabera shirt

The collar is the simplest part of the guayabera, but also the one most likely to be damaged. It's also the most visible part of the guayabera. It therefore needs special attention.

Step #9

1st rule: the collar should be ironed with the points turned down (i.e. the collar turned up) to avoid ironing the fold between the points and the foot of the collar.

Otherwise, over time, the fabric will bleach, the cotton will break and your guayabera will no longer be wearable. Iron the collar by raising the flap.

2nd rule: once the flap is raised, iron the collar on the reverse side, from the right point towards the middle of the collar and from the left point towards the middle of the collar, to avoid creating creases with the bead of fabric that forms on the front of your iron when this bead gets caught in a seam on the collar.

Remember to remove the collar stays if they are removable, otherwise you'll see their trace on the front of your collar.

3rd rule: don't dwell on the collar stand and collar flap. With a very hot iron, if you print your collar by staying on it for several seconds, you'll end up damaging the collar interlining and you'll see unsightly bubbles appear, more or less quickly depending on the quality of your interlining.

The collar is triple-layered to maintain its smooth appearance, so there's no need to be overzealous with your iron on this part of the guayabera.

Tip #4: Don't mark folds

Don't mark folds of any kind (collar flaps, flat buttoned cuffs, etc.) - you'll wear out and break the cotton and your guayabera prematurely.

Cuffs of the guayabera

Like the collar, the cuffs don't need to be ironed excessively. This will prevent premature wear of the triplets.

Step #10 and 11

Cuffs are ironed unbuttoned, on the reverse, by passing the iron tip from the button seam to the opposite buttonhole. This keeps your cuffs in a rounded shape when worn.

Avoid ironing buttoned cuffs flat by crushing them under your iron. This creates a crease on either side of the wrist. This crease is not pretty, and over time the fabric will whiten around the folds and finally give way. This will make it difficult to wear a guayabera with prematurely worn cuffs.

If your guayabera is fitted with musketeer cuffs, open them and, in the same way, iron them inside out, taking care not to iron the fabric beads against the seams. Always iron from the seams towards the middle of the cuff.

Tip #5: Don't burn your interfacing

Go over collar and cuff facings quickly. If you linger over them, you'll burn the cotton, damage the interlining and see bubbles/blisters appear more or less quickly, depending on the quality of the interlining used for your guayabera.

Please remember. In the event of a bad iron stroke marking an unwanted fold, use a spray of water or the iron's built-in spray on those stubborn folds. The iron's steam generally works very well. Some prefer to apply a wet finger to the crease for greater precision.

Once you have ironed your guayabera, put it on a hanger so you don't have to fold it.

Our easy care guayaberas for easy ironing

guayabera easy care


To make your life easier, we've selected a wide range of Easy Care linen and cotton guayaberas for you.

TIP for machine washing: wash your shirts with a gentle spin (600 or 900 rpm maximum), as it is the spinning that is responsible for a large proportion of the wrinkles that must then be ironed out.

Hang the guayaberas on a hanger and let them dry. You'll then hardly need to iron them at all (depending on how demanding you are), or just one quick stroke to remove the last few creases.

The essential tools for good ironing

The ironing board

First and foremost, you'll need to get out your ironing board. A thousand times better than your living-room ironing board, it's specially designed to make ironing easier, so go on, cheer up!

The iron

Next, you'll need a clean iron, free of rust and limescale (that's better!). If your iron isn't in tip-top condition, here's how to give it a second lease of life.

Does your iron have black marks? Rub the soleplate with Marseille soap. Is your iron sole yellowed? Wipe with a cloth soaked in white vinegar.

In both cases, wipe the sock with a clean, slightly damp cloth.

See also our tips and tricks for removing stains from your guayabera shirts.

If you don't have a steam iron, you may find it useful to put a little water in a spray bottle to moisten your shirt before ironing.

Iron heat

You'll need to know the type of fabric your shirt is made of, so you can set it to the right temperature. Linen Horse fabrics, cotton and linen, can all be ironed at high temperatures.

Silk and synthetics, on the other hand, can be ironed at low temperatures.

If you'd like to find out more about how to care for your shirts according to their material and composition, then visit our dedicated article on guayabera care tips.

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