Oh no! You’re wearing your favorite sweater or a new pair of pants when your child spills their Kool-Aid on you, a pen bleeds all over your clothing, or you get a grease stain. Do you try to salvage your clothing or toss it in the garbage? With these tips, you can do your best to save clothing from unfortunate stains.
Prevent the Stain from Setting
The faster you can treat a stain and get it off your clothing, the better chance you have of getting rid of it completely. The longer a stain sits and the more elements it’s exposed to, the more likely it is to permanently set.
When you find a stain on your clothing, dab it with cold water immediately. Heat sets, cold removes. Avoid hot water at all costs! You’ll also want to keep your clothing from being exposed to any type of heat, so try to do your stain removal in a cool, dry place.
Which Solvent to Use
Solvents lift stains and help restore your clothing to its previous glory. Pick the wrong solvent, though, and you could ruin your clothes. Check the label of your clothing to find out which solvents work best for it. Different solvents are best for different types of stains as well.
- Vinegar is mildly acidic, so it may help lift some tough stains. Try it on grass stains, coffee stains, and tea stains. Avoid using vinegar on wool.
- Laundry detergent may be the most powerful solvent you have in your arsenal! Make sure you’re using one that’s appropriate for the color of your clothing and dab the detergent gently on the stain. If you have a particularly tough stain, try dish detergent.
- Salt can be a quick fix for some types of stains. After wetting a stain, sprinkle a heavy pinch of salt on it to start pulling the stain out of the clothing.
- Hairspray. I have also personally used hairspray on some grease stains and it has worked.
Above all, do not apply pressure to stains! Pressing or rubbing a stain can make it set more quickly and keep you from ever removing it. It may take more time to dab a stain, but it will be more effective in the long run.
What is your go to for stain removal?
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