Turmeric, Red Wine, Olive Oil & More: Top Tips For Removing The Most Stubborn Of Stains

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Stains are the bane of a pristine household. From the vibrant splash of turmeric on your favourite tablecloth to the deep red blot of wine on your carpet, these stubborn marks can be a nightmare to remove. 

A nightmare to remove before you read this article, that is. With a few clever tricks and a bit of elbow grease, you can tackle even the most tenacious of stains. Here’s how to restore your items to their former glory.

Turmeric

Turmeric is a wonderful spice, but it’s also a fabric’s worst enemy due to its high pigmentation. If you’ve had a curry catastrophe, the key is to act quickly.

  1. Blot, Don’t Rub: Gently blot the stain with a clean, dry cloth to remove any excess turmeric.
  2. Cold Water Rinse: Flush the area with cold water from the backside of the fabric to push the stain out rather than through the material.
  3. Gentle Detergent: Apply a small amount of gentle liquid detergent and work it into the stain with your fingertips.
  4. Sunlight: After rinsing out the detergent, lay the fabric out in direct sunlight. The sun’s UV rays help break down the stain.
  5. Repeat if Necessary: For persistent stains, create a paste of baking soda and water, apply to the area, and after a few hours, rinse off.

Read: What are the worst (and best) culprits for staining your teeth?

By pixelshot via Canva

Red Wine

Red wine is notorious for its staining prowess. Whether it’s a drop or a spill, the approach is the same: swift action.

  1. Salt the Scene: Though some claim this step to be a myth, we’ve found it to be effective. So, as soon as the spill occurs, cover it with a generous amount of salt. The salt will absorb the wine, making it easier to lift off.
  2. Boiling Water: Stretch the fabric over a bowl and secure it with a rubber band. Then, pour boiling water over the stain from a height – the pressure and heat will help dislodge the wine.
  3. Enzyme Cleaner: For tougher stains, use an enzyme-based stain remover before laundering as usual.

Olive Oil

Olive oil can leave a greasy mark that seems to set in the fabric. However, with a bit of patience, you can remove it completely.

  1. Absorb the Excess: Use a paper towel to blot up as much oil as possible without spreading the stain.
  2. Dish Soap: Apply liquid dish soap to the stain and let it sit for a few minutes. Dish soap is designed to break down oils and should cut through the grease.
  3. Hot Water Wash: Launder the item on the hottest setting that’s safe for the fabric, and check the stain before drying.

Coffee & Tea

There’s nothing quite like a comforting cup of coffee or tea—until it ends up on your clothing or upholstery. But don’t let those tannin-rich spills dampen your spirits; with the right approach, you can lift those stains out as smoothly as your morning brew.

  1. Rinse with Cold Water: Immediately rinse the stain with cold water.
  2. Glycerine Application: Rub glycerine into the stain and let it sit for an hour.
  3. Wash as Usual: Wash with premium laundry cleaner.

Ink

Ink stains can be particularly daunting, especially when they’re from a leaky pen on a white shirt. However, with a bit of know-how and some common household items, you can say goodbye to those unsightly smudges.

  1. Alcohol Dabbing: Apply rubbing alcohol to a cotton ball and dab the stain.
  2. Rinse and Repeat: Rinse with cold water and repeat the alcohol treatment if needed.
  3. Launder: Wash on a normal cycle.

Chocolate

Chocolate may be a delightful treat, but its stains are not so sweet. Whether it’s from a sneaky square that melted in your pocket or a dessert mishap, there’s no need to despair; chocolate stains can be managed with some clever cleaning tactics.

  1. Scrape Off Excess: Gently remove any excess chocolate from the fabric.
  2. Soak in Cold Water: Soak the item in cold water, adding a bit of detergent.
  3. Launder: Wash as usual, checking the stain before drying.
By pixelshot via Canva

Grass

The green stains from grass are a classic sign of outdoor fun, but they’re not as welcome on your clothes. With a few simple steps, you can tackle these organic marks and keep your garments looking as fresh as a daisy.

  1. Pre-treat with Vinegar: Soak the stain in white vinegar for 30 minutes.
  2. Enzyme Cleaner: Apply an enzyme-based cleaner before washing.

The Bottom Line

Stains may seem like a disaster, but with these tips, they don’t have to be a permanent fixture in your home. Remember, the quicker you act, the better your chances of removing the stain completely. Always test a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric first to ensure there’s no damage or discolouration. With these methods, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle even the most stubborn of stains, keeping your fabrics looking fresh and clean. Cheers to that!

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