Clean them with warm, rather than hot water: If you’re cleaning vertical shades in a bathtub, basin, or bucket, you can use your hands to test the temperature of the water. If you decide you do wish to use your washing machine (after checking your shades’ care label states they are machine washable) don’t set the temperature higher than 86 degrees (Fahrenheit) as a rule of thumb. Washing with hot water can melt the glue, unravelling the fold and exposing the weight.

Dry your shades naturally: By putting the shades into a dryer, you’ll be subjecting them to heat – which could not only cause them to shrink, but also they may also shrink in different places at varying levels, leaving you with very odd-looking shades. This is also an issue if you hang the shades to dry – different amounts of moisture in each slat will stretch the shades to varying degrees. Lay your clean vertical shades out on some towels, and then leave them until they’re completely dry before rehanging.

Dust your vertical shades regularly: Using a very full, thick duster, gently wipe up and down the slats to remove any dust and particles. Don’t use a cloth or a very thin feather duster – these will simply move the dust around rather than actually lifting it off the surface.

Clean vertical shades at home with gentle vacuuming: It’s best to use a brush attachment when vacuuming vertical shades – the bristles will help remove dust particles, and there is less a powerful suction when using the brush, so you can clean your shades very gently. One important thing to remember is that you should always vacuum from the top in a downward motion – vacuuming upward could accidentally unhook the slats.