House Cleaning Tips > Clothing > Stain Removal from Clothes

 

 
 

Removing Stains from Clothing

Are you looking for a way to help stretch your clothing budget? Keeping your clothes free of stains is an excellent way to start. Taking care of your clothing allows you to only buy clothes when you need them, rather than having to replace items that have been destroyed by stains from red wine, food, dirt, etc.

Stain removal on clothes is not difficult if you have a few basic tools.

Gather the basic tools for stain removal on clothes so that you will be prepared for any stain emergency. There are many things that you have in your cabinets that can be used to get rid of stains on your clothing. Here are a few of the basics and what they can be used for.

The Stain Removers

Club Soda:

This is a great all-purpose cleaner for almost any kind of stain. Club soda helps to keep stains from setting in clothes. This is a great cleaner for you to use if you are out a restaurant when you have a stain emergency. Ask your waiter for some club soda to save your clothes from stain peril.

Dishwashing Liquid:`

Yes, this is the same thing you wash your dishes with. Dishwashing liquid is an excellent spot remover for clothes.

Alcohol:

Alcohol is a great way to remove grass stains and other tough stains from clothing.

Shampoo:

Shampoo is a great stain removal tool for dirt, mud, makeup stains, and for that nasty ring-around-the-collar. It does not have to be a high-priced shampoo. The sample bottles that hotels give you will work great.

Shaving Cream:

Shaving cream is not just for faces and legs anymore. Shaving cream is an excellent all-around stain remover. After all, shaving cream is just whipped soap.

WD-40:

You are thinking that there is no way that WD-40 is a stain remover, aren’t you? WD-40 is a miracle worker on grease stains, crayon, and lipstick stains. It works on any fabric except for silk.

Fels Naphtha Bar Soap:

This brown soap has been used for centuries for everything from washing clothes to washing the body. It is a great soap for stain removal.

This is by no means an exhaustive list. There are stain removers that are available on the grocery shelves that work on many different stains. These items are the items that are not usually thought of as being used to remove stains from clothes.

The Stains

Now you have a stain emergency. What do you do with all of these tools? It depends upon what kind of stain emergency that you are faced with. Here are a few of the more common stains that give people problems.

Grease Stains:

This includes anything that makes a greasy spot on your clothing. This can include mayonnaise, grease splatters, oil, greasy food, etc. Greasy spots are a very common problem that can cause the demise of your clothing. What do you do about greasy spots? You first need to blot as much of the oil as possible from the fabric with a paper towel.

Notice the word blot. Do not press the oil further into the fabric-lightly blot it. If there still seems to be oil in the fabric, then you can take talcum powder and shake it over the spot. Let the powder sit for a few minutes and then lightly brush off. This helps to draw the grease from the fabric so you can start treating the spot.

WD40 is a grease, right? Well, it can also be used to help remove a grease spot. Lightly spray the spot with the WD40 and let it sit for a few minutes. Then work in dishwashing liquid and flush with hot water. The dishwashing liquid will help dissolve the grease much like it does when you are using it to wash dishes. Launder the item as usual.

Dishwashing liquid sometimes works on its own also. Just put undiluted dishwashing soap on the stain and work in. Launder.

Shampoo has also been used successfully on many different kinds of grease stains. It removes grease from your hair and can remove it from your clothing too. The key is to try the treatment that is easiest for you and then work up to the more time consuming ones until you find the right one for your stain.

Ink Stains:

Ink seems to be an impossible stain to remove. Whether you are a teacher or a stay at home mom, you are sure to see ink stains quite frequently on clothing. There are a few different methods that you can try to remove ink from your clothing.

Rubbing Alcohol is a fast and easy way to remove ink stains from clothing. Many people have used hairspray in the past because of the alcohol content, but many brands of hairspray can leave an oily film on your clothing.

Apply the alcohol to the ink stain and let it sit for a few minutes. The spot will most likely be gone. If not, you can move onto another stain removal option.

Non-gel toothpaste is also an excellent stain removal tool for ink spots. Rub the toothpaste into the spot firmly and then launder.

The treatments for ink stains widely vary so try a few different ones until you find the right one for your particular stain.

Mildew and Mold Stains:

Mildew is a big problem stain that most people do not even try to remove. The best way to keep from having mildew stains is to prevent them. If some mildew has crept up on you though, it can be removed quite easily.

Fels Naphtha soap is a great treatment option for mildew stains. Work the soap into the stain and then launder.

Chlorine bleach is a great option if the item is able to tolerate it.

Lemon juice and Salt is a great treatment option if the clothing item is colorfast or white. You may want to try a test in an inconspicuous area first. Cover the spot with lemon juice and then sprinkle with salt. Place in a sunny area and let the sun help remove the mildew.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of stains that you may see when cleaning your family’s clothing. These are the more common stains that are seen in many families. Do not just throw away clothes that have stains on them. Try some of the options above to help remove the stains from your clothing and save you money.


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Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Mrs Clean (Corina Wilson) is not only the owner of the company, but a very busy mother of 3 children.

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Mrs Clean realized long ago, that a clean home is a necessity, not a luxury when we are struggling to find the time in our day to cover the very basic levels of work and/or family obligations. The battle seems to never end... (but that's why we're here to help!)

When Mrs Clean is not busy managing her house cleaning company or running her kids back and forth to their events, she enjoys experimenting with natural and non-toxic cleaners and learning new techniques to remove stains.

She thoroughly enjoys sharing her valuable information with the readers of her blogs and various social media sites.

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