Tips on How to Treating Stains

Dec 3, 2011

In general, it is best to treat stains as soon as possible before they set. Also, follow instructions on any piece of clothing (disregard the advice below if your shirt says "dry clean only", for example). Here are some of the most common fixes.

If you're wearing white and you spill something on yourself, wet the stain and spray a small amount of bleach-based household cleaner on it. Then rinse the area right away.
  • Red Fruits and Juices: First, stretch the part of the fabric with the stain on it over a bowl in the sink. Then pour boiling water on the stain from about a foot above the material. The results are amazing. Wash the garment in the warmest water possible, using a non-soap detergent (natural soaps can make the stain more permanent). If this doesn't work, test a spot on the inseam to see if your garment is bleach-safe. If it is, try bleaching out the stain.
  • Coffee: Pretreat the stain with stain stick or spray and heavy detergent, and then launder as directed. If this doesn't work, try bleaching.
  • Blood: Use cold water to remove the crusty surface junk and as much of the stain as possible. Do not use hot water! Then, soak the material in about a quart of cool water mixed with a teaspoon of detergent and a tablespoon of ammonia. Do this in a well-ventilated area since the gas released from mixing some chemicals can be dangerous or deadly if you breathe in too much. Let this mixture sit for about half an hour, rubbing the stained garment gently once in a while to loosen the stain. If this procedure does not remove the satin, you can try a bit of hydrogen peroxide before putting detergent on it as you're about to wash it. do not leave hydrogen peroxide on the clothes thinking that longer may work better - it will eat holes in the fabric. Rinse it with cool water to remove the hydrogen peroxide before washing the garment.
  • Chewing Gum: Try freezing the gum. If it's on clothing, stick the while garment in the freezer. If it's on a carpet or something else, you can't directly freeze it so use an ice cube instead to harden the gum. Once it has hardened, you should be able to peel the gum off or shatter it and then scrape it off with a dull knife.
  • Pen Ink: Try using some isopropyl rubbing alcohol. First blot the ink away with a paper towel. Next dab on some alcohol and blot with towels. If the stain is big, take off the garment and pour alcohol on the reverse side of the fabric. Blot with towels. If this doesn't work, try presoaking it with detergent and washing it on the hottest setting allowed for your fabric. This probably won't work for permanent ink. Instead, try washing the garment immediately with hot water and then consult a dry cleaner or use a commercial dye stripper. Sometimes, hairspray also works on pen ink.
  • Oil: Pretreat the stain with a stain stick or spray. Let this set, then pretreat it again with the heaviest laundry detergent safe for your fabric. Wash it on hot. If this doesn't work, try bleaching. If you don't want to buy any of these products, try pouring some milk on the stain. Let it sit for several minutes then wash it out. Make sure to remove all the milk, or your clothing will smell sour.

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