bent brass collar stay from Charles Tyrwhitt

Whether it's metal or plastic collar stays, we have the answer to straightening your bent collar stays right here at He.Stays. 

Straightening plastic and metal collar stays require different methods due to their malleability and density. Plastic collar stays are easily bendable when used but are fairly easy to recover to its original straight form. 

On the contrary, metal collar stays are less prone to bending but will occasionally bend due to unexpected pressures. 

Here are the quick fixes.


Straightening bent metal collar stays (steel, brass, silver, gunmetal etc.)


  1. Place bent collar stays on a flat surface (preferably a woodblock) with the bent side protruding up towards you.
  2. Use mallet/hammer (rubber side if applicable to prevent damage to collar stays) to strike bend in collar stay.
  3. Flip collar stay on other side to straighten opposite side
  4. Rinse and repeat till completely flattened
  5. Tip - Straighten smaller bends using your fingers

What you'll need:

  • Mallet or hammer (preferred rubber ended mallet)
  • Solid and flat surface
  • Woodblock

Straightening bent plastic collar stays


  1. Place towel on ironing board
  2. Place plastic collar stay on towel
  3. Fold one layer over to cover collar stay
  4. Set iron to highest setting
  5. Iron the top layer of your towel to add heat and pressure to flatten the plastic collar stays. (You may need to lean down to apply enough pressure to flatten collar stay)
  6. Open towel for flattened plastic collar stay

What you'll need:

  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • Towel
  • Plastic collar stays


Straightening Metal Collar Stays

When it comes to straightening your metal collar stays you may need to get in touch with your inner blacksmith. 

In simple terms, here's what the process actually looks like:

straighten metal collar stay

For whatever reason, your collar stay has bent and caused humps to appear. I personally prefer using a rubber mallet rather than your ordinary hammer used for nails as it's more forgivable if you happen to make a mistake. Not using a rubber mallet can cause unnecessary dents in the metal collar stay. 

If you don't own a rubber mallet, be sure to grip your hammer closer to the head. This ensures the strikes you make to be accurate and less deep to do further damage.

Continue striking your collar stay and when it seems flat enough, flip it over and strike the other side to even it out. 

You should end up with a relatively flat collar stay. To finish it up, don't be afraid to add some final tweaks using your own fingers.

After straightening your metal collar stays you may notice a bit of warpedness and scratches due to the process. Don't fret. As long as it somewhat returns to its original straight state, the scratches and little nicks aren't a big deal. 

Just try not to bend them next time.  


Straightening Plastic Collar Stays

If you have a crutch with plastic collar stays and haven't made the switch to metal, here's how you can straighten the plastic ones.

The reason why this method with the iron works is because the heat softens the molecules in the plastic to be easily mouldable. By placing the towel above, it provides protection for the plastic not to melt but enough heat and pressure to flatten it.

In actuality, this method also works for metal. Just ask any blacksmith.

blacksmith using heat to flatten metal

The reason why we don't it is because it's more dangerous to work with more heat than an iron. 

After using the method be sure to wait a few minutes before picking it up with your hands. It may still be hot and warp in your hands.


However, we've said it time and time again that plastic collar stays are a big no-no for men who wear collared shirts. At the very minimum, men should utilise the sturdiness of metal collar stays. 

Chances are, if your plastic collar stays bent then they're going to bend again due to their flimsiness. Plastic collar stays bend extremely easily due to their flimsy material. Try on some metal collar stays and you'll never go back. 


In Conclusion

These are the two methods to straighten your bent plastic or metal collar stays.

For metal collar stays you'll need a flat surface and a hammer or rubber mallet. Strike the bend in your collar stay to flatten it and flip to the other side to even it out.

For plastic collar stay you'll need a towel, iron and ironing board. Place towel on ironing board and collar stay on top of the towel. Fold over one layer of the towel and iron the top layer with your own pressure to flatten the collar stay. Open up the towel and wait 2-3 minutes for collar stay to cool before retrieving it and inserting into shirt collar.

We hope these methods to straightening plastic and metal collar stays are helpful for you. 

If you have any secret methods for returning your collar stay to it's original straight state, shoot us a comment below and we'll be sure to add your method to this blog pos. 


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