Stubborn stains are usually a sign of a good time or a hard day’s graft, but removing the evidence from your clothing can seem like a chore.
There are many ways to remove stains – some more interesting than others – but pre-treating the stain is the key to successful stain removal. Another top tip is to dab away any excess liquid first. Rubbing it in will only make it worse.
Let’s take a look at how to make the most common stains disappear.
Tea and Coffee Stains
Rinsing the targeted area with warm water will loosen the stain, and prevent any major discolouration. This should be done ASAP so the stain doesn’t have a chance to set into your clothing. Luckily, tea stains are quite pale, so if you’re out and about when it happens, giving it a quick rinse should see you through until you can tackle the stain properly.
Once you are home, other methods can be used to make sure the stain is well and truly gone.
Using a stain remover should do the trick, but if you don’t have any, it’s worth raiding the food cupboard for some more imaginative stain removal agents.
A splash of white vinegar or a generous layer of baking soda will make light work of the stain. Wet the stain and apply either of the ingredients to the affected area. After a soak, the discolouration should disappear, but remember to give it a proper clean in the machine afterwards.
Red Wine Stains
There’s no reason to panic, though. If you follow these simple tips, it’ll be like the spillage never happened.
Adding white wine to the affected area isn’t an old wives’ tale – it really does work. Firstly, use a cloth to soak up as much liquid as possible, then apply white wine to the stain. The wine will neutralise the colour, making it easier to remove.
If you’d rather drink the wine than use it as a stain remover, salt is another effective remedy. It draws out the liquid and ensures the wine doesn’t sink into the fabric.
After the pre-treatment, you can wash your clothes as normal, but if you want to be extra safe, consider using a little laundry bleach.
Slides, tackles and dives inevitably result in grass stains and dried on mud, which can be a little stubborn to remove.
The best way to remove mud stains is to wait for the mud to dry. Once dried, scrape off the excess and pop it in the washing machine.
Grass stains are particularly difficult because the organic matter closely resembles fabric fibres. So, the vibrant green colour easily clings to clothing, making it harder to remove.
As this type of stain is particularly stubborn, you should soak the clothes as soon as possible; if you like, you can also put some detergent on the stain to help loosen the fibres. Sit back and relax for 15 minutes while the cleaning agent does its work. After a good soak, wash the garments at a high temperature using an enzyme laundry detergent.
Before applying detergent directly onto the material, you should test out a small patch, just to make sure there’ll be no damage to the garment.
Before putting your garment in the washing machine, you can try using washing up liquid to dislodge the stain. Apply a small amount of the liquid to an old toothbrush and softly scrub the fabric. It should then be washed at a high temperature – but make sure you stick to the washing guidelines!
Blood, Sweat and Sauces
Sweat: To avoid the brown/grey tinge on your pure white tops, soak your clothes in warm soapy water before giving them a proper wash.
Sauces: To treat sauce-like stains, place the clothes in cold, soapy water for a soak before putting them in the washing machine.
The Washing Machine
It’s no use expecting clean clothes out of a dirty machine. Use a special cleaner in the drum to get rid of dirt, limescale and bacteria. It will help maintain top quality results with every wash.
Want a little more information? Find out more stain-busting tips from Bosch here.
Now, you’re equipped with all the knowledge to remove stubborn stains. Just remember… dab, don’t rub!