Can You Dry Clean A Sheepskin Rug?

Sheepskin rugs are the number one hygge boys in town. Ravishing and cool with attributes capable of turning any living room into an attractive den, sheepskin rugs indeed serve their purpose very well.

On that course however, they get very dirty and sometimes begin to smell, and you may wonder whether dry cleaning is a good option in order to lift off the burden of going through the fibers with your very own hands— because of how delicate they appear.

The answer is simple.

Sheepskin rugs can be drycleaned, and as a matter of fact, sheeskin rugs are meant to be dry cleaned in the first place by virtue of their delicate nature which regular machine or even had washing can easily take advantage of. At the dry cleaners, sheepskin rugs would be given the treatments they deserve, and that is super delicate treatment.

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The rugs would be spot checked and possibly cleaned for any stains before they are handed over to the team that handles dry cleaning.

The modern day dry cleaning solvent, contrary to what people say, isn’t less damaging compared to the regular laundry detergent you use at home, if we must view things in a negative light, and if anything, it can even be super delicate with some types of clothing articles, especially sheepskin rugs.

The dry cleaning process too isn’t as haggard as machine washing, so your rugs don’t end up tossed ruggedly in the washer which can strip so much conditioner in them and make them matted.

I believe that’s so much for dry cleaning sheep rugs intro, below, we’ll discuss more on dry cleaning sheepskin rugs, the best practices on how to do so, and also how to clean them at home when the cost of dry cleaning isn’t something you can deal with.

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What is the best way to clean a sheepskin rug?

By far, the best way to clean sheepskin rugs is to dry clean them. That will reduce the chances of you destroying the sheepskin rugs using diy treatments.

Dry cleaning is almost always safe for any type of sheepskin rug, even the faux ones. But it is always good to check the care label first to learn how best to clean the specific type of sheepskin rug you have.

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At the dry cleaners, your rugs are washed using solvents rather than water and these are super effective at penetrating and sucking out dirt and soiling than regular washing.

Aside from that, the cleaning process itself is very gentle. The rug isn’t tossed as hard as it would be in the washer, which will cause the fibers to frizzle and matt. And for these reasons, dry cleaning appears to be the best option for cleaning sheepskin rugs.

How to clean a sheepskin rug at home

When dry cleaning isn’t an option, you can always wash rugs by hand and also by machine. Before that first, when you have stains on your rug, you can treat them as follows.


Always make sure to treat stains as they form, and also before taking them to the dry cleaners. Never allow stains to sit and set into the rug first before attempting to clean them, they’ll become very difficult to remove.

Here’s how to treat stains on sheepskin rugs.

When you have drink spills, blot the affected spot with a clean towel or paper towel to absorb as much of the liquid as possible.

Then apply a wool wash (detergent) to the spot or preferrably to a damp cloth and use the cloth to work the detergent down to the bottom where fibers meet the leather.

After some time of working and rubbing, the spot must have gone completely. Use a fresh side of the cloth (dampened with water) and lift off the wool wash. Do this with other areas of the cloth until you’re satisfied the area is properly cleaned.

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You can then manage the rug for sometime before you go for a more thorough wash at some point.

When you have solid stains, use a knife or something with an edge to gently lift off most of the solids from the rug, then proceed with the same instructions until you achieve a clean rug.

For grease and oil based stains, absorb most of them with baking soda (by sprinkling it over the affected spot), allow to sit for 4 hours then vacuum it off or brush it away. Then clean as instructed.

Baking soda is also great for when your rugs begin to emit light odor and you don’t want to wash them.

You can use it to tame down the smell. Simply sprinkle some of it over the entire rug and let sit for 24 hours. Now vaccum away or brush off completely.

Depending on the nature of the stain, and also its age, you may find that more elbow grease may be required to completely get rid of the stain.

And in cases where the stain doesnt lift off completely, you might have better luck dry cleaning or washing the entire material by hand or machine, even though sheepskin rugs aren’t expected to be washed as frequently as other materials due to how they deteriorate in quality easily.

By hand (recommended)

Washing sheepskin rugs by hand is recommended as you have better control of the kind of agitation that goes into the material.

To wash sheepskin rugs by hand, we have to undo any matting that must have formed from regularly stepping on the fibers.

So dust or shake the rug thoroughly to get rid of dust and dirt hanging around in it, then vacuum in plain suction mode and get a wool brush to go through the fibers until the rug is soft and fluffy again.

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Now create a mixture of wool wash or wool based detergent (it should have lanolin as part of the ingredients) and regular water according to the product instructions.

Make sure to use a spacious medium like a bathtub or a wide mouth bowl so you have a lot of spaces to work with.

Next, submerge the sheep skin rug inside the solution and swish. Go through the fibers gently with your hands to loosen up soil, but be very careful while doing that to avoid damaging the fibers.

Keep washing in this manner until you’re satisfied that the rug is fully cleaned.

Then empty the water and add rinse-water to the container or medium you’re using. Submerge the sheepskin rug and swish to loosen soil, and remove suds from the fibers.

Keep to this loop of changing water and swish rug until you’re satisfied that the rug is fully cleaned.

Then drain as much water as possible from the rug using clean heavy towels and hit it with your hands to further free up the fibers, then dry it in a well ventilated environment but away from the sunlight as that can cause it to yellow.

After drying, beat up the rug with your hands again and brush it as directed above, you should have a fluffy sheepskin rug in no time.

By machine

Washing sheepskin rug by machine is fun and pretty easy, except that the risk involved is quite great. With a machine, you have less control over the degree of agitation you apply to the rug, unlike in hand washing.

Your machine might have the option to select a softer wash cycle, but that can sometimes be too hard for your sheepskin rug, especially with consistent cleaning.

But that isn’t to say that for those days when laziness prevails, you cannot use the washer to achieve your goal. You can, and here’s how.

Fill up your machine with cold water and add a wool wash to the water or any wool based detergent. Dust your rug very well to remove hanging dust, dirt and soil, then submerge it into the solution and clean in the wool in the gentlest cycle available for your machine.

Spin afterwards to remove as much water as possible and dry flat in a well ventilated area away from the sunlight. Do not use a fabric conditioner to soften the rug, and avoid putting the rug in the dryer to prevent it from shrinking.

What about faux sheepskin rugs? Should you dry clean them?

Absolutely, when it’s recommended by the manufacturer to dry clean faux sheepskin rugs, make sure to dry clean them.

You can also wash some of them by hand or using a machine.

Always make sure to check the care label first to ensure you’re making the right decision regarding how you’re cleaning the sheepskin rugs.

For machine or hand washing, do it the same way as outlined for the actual sheepskin rug, but feel free to use a mild, gentle or even enzyme based detergent as it wont eat up the fibers because they’re synthetic.

But opt for a gentle cycle when you wash them too and avoid the dryer like the plague as it can melt the synthetic fibers.

Final Thoughts

Sheepskin rugs are meant to be dry cleaned because the process is quite gentle in cleaning them.

Machine washing and hand washing are somewhat tough on the fibers and rug composition in general which can lead to fading and quick deterioration over time.

So unless stated as an option by the manufacturer in the care label, avoid cleaning sheepskin rugs in the washing machine or by hand.