With spring and summer coming soon, us Kiwis will be out in the good old outdoors more from camping to tramping to BBQing at home. So we put this brief stain removal guide together so you don’t end up with frustrated with ruined clothing!
It seems self-explanatory, but these stains are from oils or fats used in cooking.
Food grease stains are some of the easiest – and cheapest – stains to remove. What’s the hard part? Catching the stain before it is washed and dried in the dryer.
With a paper towel, wipe off all of the stain that you can. When you are ready to wash, follow these steps:
- Saturate the stain in dish soap.
- Place enough soup on the stain to cover it completely and then gently rub it in with your finger.
- Wash the garment as you usually would. If it can tolerate washing on a normal cycle, then do so. The agitation of the washer will help eliminate the stain. If it is a garment that can only be washed on a delicate setting, try using that setting first.
- Hang the garment to dry – do not dry in the dryer! This step is vitally important to removing grease. Your eyes will play tricks on you. While the item is wet, you’ll be certain you don’t see the grease stain any longer. But once it’s dry, it can possibly ‘reappear’! So please remember to hang dry.
- After the item is dry, examine the grease spot in a bright light. Is the stain gone? Can you see any traces of it? If not, great! If you can still see the stain, go on to the next step.
- Re-wash the garment using these same steps all over again. Have patience – it will come out! If you washed the garment on the delicate cycle, try washing it on a ‘normal’ cycle this time. If you washed it on ‘normal’ the first time, you can try increasing the agitation of the cycle, washing on a ‘heavy-duty’ cycle or whatever your washing machine offers.
- Continue this process until the stain comes out.
Protein-based stains that can ruin your clothing are eggs and dairy products. Any type of cream based sauce or egg dish that spills on your favorite shirt needs an enzyme treatment to remove the stain. Mud and blood are also protein-based stains as well.
To treat these stains effectively, you’ll need to soak your stained laundry in Vanish Oxi Action Powder. It’s a little time intensive, but it is extremely effective at fading and even eliminating protein-based stains.
Get a large bucket, fully dissolve 30g of Vanish Gold Oxi Action Crystal White Powder into 7 litres of warm water (max 40°C), and leave it to soak. For coloured fabrics, soak for a maximum of 2 hours. For whites, soak for a minimum of 2 hour. After the soaking, wash as per usual.
Red Wine and Tea can be tricky to remove, as they are tannin stains. If you act quickly you can virtually eliminate them.
As soon as you notice the spill, run the garment under cold, running water. If you can’t remove the garment at the time, you can blot the stain with a wet white cloth. As soon as you’re able, launder the garment as you usually would in warm water.
Make sure you hang the garment to dry and do not dry in the dryer. The heat will set in the stain. Also, some stains do not really show themselves until the item is completely dry.
If the stain is still there after hang-drying, then you’ll need to do a chlorine bleach soak if the item is color-fast.