Make Your Own Wrinkle Releaser Spray

Do you like to keep a bottle of the Downy Wrinkle Releaser spray around the house? It’s a clever product that you spray on clothing, smooth and stretch the material a little bit, let dry, and TA DA – the wrinkles will disappear! I’ve found this product to be quite handy as a last minute fix for wrinkled items that I didn’t have time to iron.

The good news is you can make your own wrinkle releaser spray quickly and easily for very little cost. It’s simply a matter of adding a little bit of fabric softener to water. For every 1/3 cup of water you add 1 teaspoon of fabric softener. You can make as small or as large of a batch as you want. You don’t need expensive fabric softener either. A bottle of fabric softener from the dollar store performs just as well in this homemade wrinkle releaser spray as the pricier brands.

To use your homemade wrinkle releaser, start with a wrinkled item

(here’s my wrinkled shirt)

Spray the wrinkle releaser on the item (a spray bottle that has a mist setting works well). Stretch and smooth the item to release the wrinkles. As you can see in the picture, your item will have damp spots so you probably don’t want to immediately wear the item. It will need to set for about a half hour or so to let the dampness go away. That being said, I have been known to be impatient and put the item on anyway and sometimes your body heat will dry the item faster. {{ Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do }}

Once the item is dry, you have a nice smooth piece of clothing again with no wrinkles and no ironing!

The Downy Wrinkle Releaser comes in a 3 oz travel size and a 16.9 size which the recipe measurements below will duplicate nicely.

Travel Size Homemade Wrinkle Releaser Spray

You Will Need:
1/3 cup Water
1 tsp Fabric Softener

Combine the items in a small spray bottle and swirl them together to mix. To use, spray on clothing and stretch and smooth to release the wrinkles.

16 oz Size Homemade Wrinkle Releaser Spray

You Will Need:
2 cups Water
6 tsp Fabric Softener

Combine the items in a spray bottle of at least a 16 oz size and swirl them together to mix. To use, spray on clothing and stretch and smooth to release the wrinkles.

If you have any question when using this on a delicate fabric (such as silk), test it in a hidden area first.

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    1. I usually use regular tap water and it works well. However distilled water is always an option, especially if you might not be using the mixture up very quickly and want to be sure it will remain shelf stable for a long time.

  1. Wowww thank you for this excellent idea. I purchased a carton of the Dollar General brand before the pandemic on line and when I tell you this liquid in a bottle is a life saver. I absolutely LOVE IT. Unfortunately now I can’t order on line any longer only in store purchase, which is dumb and 2 problems has came up. 1. They have a shortage and 2. The closest store is about 20-25 mins away…. The trip would be worth it if they had the item. But I’m definitely going to try this and see how it works. Fingers crossed. 🙂

    1. If the sheet is just laying flat on a surface (like a table for instance), you can still spray this on and then stretch the sheet material a bit to help pull out wrinkles. Or perhaps you could find a way to hang it up over a shower rod, or on a clothesline.

  2. I have allergies to fragrant fabric softeners. I took 2 fragrance free softer sheets and soaked in a half a cup of very warm water. After a few minutes, I squeezed the ‘juice’ from the softener sheets and added the water to fill a spray bottle. I sprayed on several wrinkled garments in my closet. I’m happy to say that it worked very well.

  3. I’ve been looking for something to avoid having to pay exorbitant ironing fees on a transatlantic cruise (no washer/dryers and no irons/steamers allowed on board), as I need to keep the weight down for the pre cruise flight baggage allowance, I shall try the diy mix at home and once happy with the quantities, will take an empty spray bottle and a small amount of fabric softener and mix it onboard.
    Sounds like a plan.

  4. We use tons of wrinkle release, especially for my nursing uniforms. I’m a busy mom with no time or desire to iron. I was doubtful that this would be quite as good as my beloved store bought product. Much to my surprise, and delight this homemade version worked just as well! Thanks for a great money saving idea, I can’t wait to try others posted here! Great job!

  5. I saw your recipe for this awhile back so I kept two empty bottles of Downy brand and refilled them yesterday. Works just as well for so much less cost! All set to go now for our next trip. Thanks!

    1. I would use a little less of the concentrated fabric softener. Or, I would make up the concentrated fabric softener according to its directions first and then use it as called for in this recipe.

  6. This is a life saver. I have not been able to find wrinkle releaser since moving to a small town. I have so many knit tops that I have not worn because they got wrinkled in storage. Again thank you so much.

  7. Thanks for this. I have used Downy Wrinkle Release for years with good results but have watched and grown increasingly frustrated as the bottles get smaller and / or the price steadly increased over time. Also it became harder to find at times as many stores were out or stopped carrying it and I have had to buy it online. My camel straw was seeing it available for $20 a 33oz bottle!?!?!? Really???? Glad to try a $$ saving alternative. Thanks!

  8. Instead of using store bought fabric softener, would hair conditioner work too? I’ve read several recipes for DIY fabric conditioner and one ingredient is always hair conditioner.

    Think spraying hair conditioner with water would be cheaper.

    Have trial size to Downy Wrinkle Resistant. Thought once spray bottle is gone, I could add water with 1 teaspoon of hair conditioner in this bottle size.

    Your thoughts?

    1. Hmmm, I think that might work. I think starting out with just 1 teaspoon is good as you would probably want it diluted quite a bit if you are putting it directly on clothing. I would also test it first on a piece of clothing that you’re willing to experiment on in case it leaves spots or something. Let us know how it works if you try it!

      1. I just tried the DIY wrinkle releaser with hair conditioner and it works. I used 1 ts of white conditioner with H20 in a travel size bottle. I’m starting with the color, white, because I have several white shirts and was afraid to use a different color. Once the travel bottle is empty, I will try a different color conditioner. Love the idea if choosing your own fragrance and love your website. Happy DIY!

  9. I just throw the item back in the dryer w/wet kitchen towel. the item is dry in a few minutes and wrinkle free to wear.

  10. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU – I was just searching for a location to purchase Downy Wrinkle Reducer and came across your homemade recipe. Very much appreciated. We use a homemade laundry soap so this is a nice addition ! Cath


  12. The recipe I used had vinegar. I eneded up really diluting it b/c of the vinegar smell. I like this recipe much better. I will use it next time. Thanks!

  13. Use the unscented fabric softener and a few drops of scented oil (your current fave) to get whatever scent you want! Thanks for a great post!

  14. I made some of this last week, and it’s been working great! It seems to work just as well, if not a little better than Downy on minor wrinkles. I spray far enough away from the item that I don’t have to wait nearly 30 minutes before it’s dry. Thanks!

  15. Dollar General brand is only $1.75 and the bottle is twice the size of the Downy Wrinkle Releaser. Been using it for years and a bottle usually last us about two maybe three months.

  16. I travelled for 35 years. I also hate to iron so when i pulled my clothes out of my suitcase I have been using the Downy wrinkle release and placing my clothes in the shower to steam. Thanks for the ‘recipe’ to replace the Downy spray. When I read this it was ‘duh’ moment for me. Thank You!

  17. Dollar General store has a generic version that works great as well and is much less expensive than the
    Downy version. Ive used it for years. I may try this just to be able to have the “smell” i want. After you spray your garment, use the blow dryer for a quick fix. still faster than setting up the ironing board and iron if its not already out.

    1. I love the blow dryer idea! That would certainly help dry the garment faster which means you could put it on and start wearing it sooner too.

  18. Love it, love it! I just kept the actual empty bottle of Wrinkle Release and wrote your recipe with a Sharpie marker on the back Ü

    I ran out of mine a while back and meant to search for a mock recipe for it….so THANK YOU!

    1. Nicole – either one works, but distilled or filtered water is always a great choice because it helps get rid of any things that might grow mold or bacteria if it sits for a long time. If you have distilled or filtered water available, that would be the preferred choice.

  19. Have you noticed any spotting on the clothes after using this? I am a little scared to try it then discover spots.

    1. No, I have not had a problem with spots. However you would not want to use this mixture on silk, for instance, or other materials that should not get wet.

  20. I have used this for years, especially good when you forget to empty the dryer and the clothes are wrinkled, put in a wash cloth with this mixture on it and spray into the dryer and run it a few minutes, then take out the clothes and put on hangers and spray, stretch out and let dry, no ironing or wrinkles!!!

    1. I hope you like this mixture too Rosa Marie! My experience was that it worked just as well as the store bought stuff.

  21. I want to make this because we use tons of Downey Wrinkle Release and it is very expensive. I make my own fabric softner as well so I assume that will work for your recipe?? Thanks!

    1. I’ve haven’t tested it out myself, but I think the homemade fabric softener should work in this recipe too. If you give it a try, stop back and let us know how it worked!

  22. I just made some of this and used it. I can’t decide if it’s easier than ironing or not. I had to get my wrinkly dress REALLY wet for it to get the wrinkles out, (I didn’t have to with the store bought kind) It took a long time for the dress to dry, so it ‘s not any faster. It smells nice, though