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Ultimate Guide of How to Remove Stains From Clothes

Finding a stain on our clothes and trying to remove stains from clothes is a most dismaying feeling. All too often, people who don't know how to remove it appropriately might resort to rubbing at the stain with a wet cloth. While this is effective in a few cases, many other times it only serves to make the stain worse or even permanent. Various types of stains need different treatments for effective removal. Read through the laundry tips and resources here to learn how to salvage clothing that has become stained.

How to Remove Food Stains from Clothes

For most common food stains, it is essential to first remove as much of the food from the clothes as possible. Always blot with a dry paper towel instead of rubbing. Applying a stain removal product for a few minutes and then rinsing under hot water is usually the next best approach.

  • Ketchup – Watch a video on removing ketchup stains.
  • Chocolate – Spot removers and hot rinses are best for chocolate stains.
  • Halloween Treats – Learn to remove chocolate, caramel, and fruit stains.
  • Baby Food – Baby food is easily removed with detergent and hot water.
  • Eggs – Use different techniques to remove raw or cooked egg stains.
  • Ice Cream - Ice cream stains require a pretreatment soak before washing.
  • Cooking Oil – Some simple household products can help remove grease stains.
  • Watermelon – Watermelon stains require a four-step procedure for removal.

How to Remove Medical Stains from Clothes

Most bodily fluids contain proteins. This means that they require an enzyme-based product for stain removal. Use cold water while soaking the affected clothing in an enzyme detergent before rinsing. This should help to remove stains from clothes that can become a problem quickly.

  • Perspiration – Learn how to remove sweat and deodorant stains.
  • Blood (PDF) – Blood stains are tough,blood stain removal is best done when fresh.
  • Urine – Read about several products that remove urine stains and odors.
  • Vomit – Find instructions for vomit stain removal from clothes and other fabrics.
  • Feces – Hanging clothes outside helps to remove feces stains.
  • Semen – Follow these do's and don'ts regarding semen stain removal.
  • Saliva – Remove yellowing saliva stains with dish detergent.
  • Protein Stains – Most protein stains can be removed using the same method.

How to Remove Liquid Stains from Clothes

Many drinks that contain tannins, such as tea, coffee, and fruit juices, can be cleaned with the same procedure. First blot the stain with a rag soaked in clear soda water. This can typically remove stains from clothes. It can be further treated with spot stain removers.

  • Wine – Remove wine stains, especially removing a red wine stain, with white vinegar or rubbing alcohol.
  • Tea (PDF) – Page two of this brochure details how to remove tannin-based stains.
  • Coffee – Always clean coffee stains as soon as possible to prevent setting in.
  • Alcohol – Soaking with a mild detergent is effective for removing alcohol stains.
  • Colored Drinks – Learn to remove stains caused by drinks with strong pigments.
  • Fruit Juice – Borax is very useful in removing fruit juice stains.
  • Baby Formula – Remove baby formula stains with a few natural ingredients.
  • Milk – Milk stains involve some very specific steps for successful removal.

How to Remove Earth Stains from Clothes

Earth stains tend to require a more vigorous approach for effective removal. Many such stains, including rust, grass and mildew, can be cleaned with white vinegar. Always be sure to consult stain removal instructions first since the procedure does vary by substance.

  • Grass – Rubbing alcohol is an excellent treatment for grass stains.
  • Mud – Follow some easy tips to remove mud and dirt stains from clothing.
  • Mildew – Remove mildew stains with boiling water and vinegar.
  • Pollen – Sun bleaching is a simple and free way to remove pollen stains.
  • Berry Dyes – Watch a video on removing berry stains quickly.
  • Pine Resin – Hand sanitizer is a surprising solution to removing tree sap stains.
  • Rust – A lime and some salt are great natural items in how to remove rust stains.
  • Soot – Soot-covered clothes require a deep soak multiple times.

How to Remove Industrial Stains from Clothes

Many industrial stains are notorious for staining hard and fast, due to the synthetic chemicals that they contain. In a few cases, natural household products should do the trick. In other instances, laundry detergent or even regular soap are helpful in eliminating the offending stains.

  • Candle Wax – Removing wax stains is a multi-step procedure.
  • Lipstick – Use rubbing alcohol to treat lipstick stains.
  • Ink – Pick from several ways on how to remove ink from clothes.
  • Hair Dye – Hair dye stains badly but needs to be treated gently with the right products.
  • Tobacco – Treat tobacco stains with soap and enzyme products.
  • Crayon – Follow some easy, useful tips on crayon stain removal.
  • Face Paint – Soap and water can typically remove face paint stains.
  • Paint – Read about removing oil and latex-based paint stains from clothes.
  • Permanent Marker – Bleach easily removes permanent marker stains.