Home ironing is essential to the maintenance of a proper wardrobe. Pressing and touching up a garment at home reduces the stress that results from a trip to the dry cleaner thereby extending its useful life.
Suit jackets and trousers should be dry cleaned as infrequently as possible, preferably once or twice a year. Shirts are the only items from one's wardrobe that should regularly go to the dry cleaner. And unless you pay to have your shirts hand-pressed, most dry cleaners employ automatic pressing machines that use tremendous force and heat in order to efficiently achieve that dry-cleaned press. Their lack of individual attention distorts shirt collars, destroys buttons, shrinks cuffs, and ultimately, leaves garments looking "limp."
But let’s be realistic; not everyone has the time to launder and hand press all of their shirts at home. So in many ways, dry cleaning is a necessary evil. Touching up shirts between wears can greatly reduce the frequency of trips to the dry cleaner and thereby increase the yield of one’s wardrobe. Also, your shirts will wear better if the collar, cuff, and front placket are pressed correctly.
Fear not at the prospect of overseeing this process at home. There are only a few small steps to achieving that perfect press, and with the proper tools, the effort is minimal.