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30th Jun 2012

Here Are Six Savvy Solutions for Six Stubborn Stains

Spill something on your trousers? Notice a mark on your shirt? Find out how to get rid of the most common stains using simple household products.

Rebecca McKnight

We’ve all been there. Makeup on your work shirt collar. Sweat marks on your gym t-shirt. Grass stains on your favourite jeans.

Worse still, ten washes later and the stains remain. Well this is hopefully all about to change as we are bringing you six savvy solutions for six stubborn stains. As if that’s not enough, they are all household products which you will most likely already have. 

1. Sweat marks

It happens to the best of us. Sometimes there isn’t enough deodorant or air conditioning in the world to stop those dreaded sweat marks from appearing. The best way to get rid of sweat stains is to pour white vinegar over the stain before rubbing a little salt in. Hang the garment out to dry and then wash as normal. Sorted!

2. Red wine

There are many ways to remove red wine stains but our favourite is to use its delicious counterpart. Pour a small amount of white wine on the stain and dab with a clean towel. Make sure you don’t rub the stain and remember that wine stains are easier to remove if they are still wet. Blot as much as possible and throw it into the washing machine with your usual stain remover. Seeing as the bottle is open, enjoy a glass of white while you wait.

3. Grass stains

If you’ve been out in the garden cutting the grass or rolling around (don’t know why you would be), then one of the most effective ways of getting those stubborn grass stains out is rubbing alcohol. You need to dilute the alcohol first and then rub it onto the stain before letting it dry and washing it. Who knew stain removal was so easy?

4. Makeup

For cosmetic stains shampoo is a very useful product. All you have to do is apply the shampoo onto the stain using your finger or a toothbrush and leave it for at least twenty minutes before washing as usual. For nail polish stains gently rub a small amount of acetone onto the inside of the garment. Make sure you check the label first though as acetone is known for lifting colours and surfaces. Been there, done that, thrown out the blouse.

5. Food stains

With so many different foods it’s impossible to locate one singular method of removing food stains from clothing. That is why we are picking what we reckon is the most common, and most annoying, stain: food stains on white clothing. Apparently denture-cleaning tablets are a great way to get rid of this sort and colour of stain. Dissolve a tablet in a small cup of water and pour it directly onto the stain.

6. Coffee/ Tea

One of the most frustrating things in life can be sitting down to a tasty cup of tea to spill it over your top. Well fear not as this is easily fixed. Simply wet a cloth with hot water and put a touch of baking soda on it. Rub this into the fabric and rinse off. Voila. Now get back to that cup of tea of yours and yes you deserve a wee biscuit after all that hassle!

So the next time you splat your dinner, spill your wine or smudge your makeup try these top tips. Be careful though as some of these techniques will not be suitable to certain materials. Always read the label and if necessary test the fabric.