It is just a fact of life that clothes will get stained. Since not wearing clothes is not an option it is a good idea to learn about removing stains. A little bit of knowledge can save you a lot of money down the road in replacement cost.

Read The Labels

There is a good reason they put labels on clothes. It is so you know how to treat the fabrics. The important things you need to know are right there. If it says “Lay flat to dry” that means that your large sweater could end up very small after a trip through the dryer. “Dry clean only” means a washer will probably destroy it. There are many other ones that might be on there so it is important to read them.

The Pre-Cleaning

Pre-cleaning is one of the most important steps in stain removal. First, don’t let the stain dry or it will start to set. Blot up as much of the stain as you can and after washing it in cold water check it before it goes in a dryer. The heat in there will set the stain and getting it out might become impossible.

When removing the stain during pre-treating never rub, always blot. Rubbing will just push the stain further in. Solid stains can be pre-treated by scraping off any excess material.

When it says “Dry clean only” only a dry cleaner can help. 48 hours is your window to get it to them but the sooner the better.

Basic Removal of stains

After pre-treating, place the garment on a cloth or towel with the stain on the cloth. Then treat the stain from behind Use a laundry solution, bough or homemade, to wash the stain into the bottom cloth. Get as much out as you can then laundry in cold water.

Stain Removal Products

Sometimes you will have just what you need to treat a stain right at home. If the stain is organic the hydrogen peroxide works well but only on light colors. It will bleach dark colors. A warm vinegar works well as well. Ketchup and mustard are cleaned well with it as they both contain vinegar in them. It also works on other stains, such as grass. Because bleach is so harsh, use it only as a last resort.

Types Of Stains

Different types of stains do best with certain types of cleaning. What will clean on type of stain perfectly might be contra-indicated on another type of stain. Knowing how to treat specific stains is key to being effective.

  • Protein stains and mud- These stains need soaking and agitating in cold water before laundering
  • Tannin stains- Tannin stains are stains like tea or coffee. They do best if you use a little laundry detergent and warm water. After that it will be ready for the laundry
  • Oil based stains- Dish-washing liquid, like Dawn or Joy, work best on these. After the pre-treatment they will be ready for the laundry.

The Final Tips

The final tips must include, again, the importance of acting quickly. It is you best bet. Also, avoid using bar soap, that is not what it is made for. And the final tip is to read the tag and proceed accordingly.

Categories: Cleaning Tips