I’m sure we’ve all experienced getting food stains on our clothes one way or another. It could be that you inadvertently spilled some food sauce on your shirt, someone accidentally knocked over some coffee on your white pants or you bump someone holding a glass of wine. Whatever the case may be, any food stain on shirts is always a frustrating problem to deal with, not to mention most people don’t know how to get rid of food stains on clothes. Stop with the unending rubbing that could spread the stain and start following these tips on how to get rid of food stains on clothes.
How to Remove Food Stains from Clothes
1. Act quickly
Stains become harder and harder to remove the longer they are not treated. Once your clothes get stained, don’t just put them in the hamper and leave them there until you do your next load of laundry. If you can attend to your stained clothes immediately, then do so. If you’re at a party or gathering, quickly attend to your stained clothes once you get home.
2. Scrape then blot
Your first remedy would be to try to remove as much of the food stain on shirts or pants as possible. However, be careful not to spread the stain even further. This means don’t rub the fabric as you could create an even greater mess. Instead, get a dull object like a spoon or even a credit card and scrape off as much stain as you can. Then, get a clean paper towel and blot the area where the stain is located.
3. Know your stains
After applying the first remedy, take your clothes home to start treating the stains. But, before you do this, you need to know the type of stain. Knowing and understanding the type of stain will make it easier to get rid of food stains on clothes properly using the best treatment. There are three types of stains to remember: protein, tannin and grease. Tannin stains are generally those rich in color like mustard, ketchup, tea, juice, etc. Protein stains are caused by mean or dairy products like milk or yogurt. Lastly, grease stains come from oils like cooking oil or butter.
4. Pick out the proper pre-treatment cleaning agent to use
After determining what type of stain is present, you can now pre-treat your clothes with the proper cleaning agent. For clothes with tannin stains, a mixture of water and vinegar will do. If you are dealing with protein or grease stains, you should use some sort of a degreaser or a dishwashing fluid. To remove oil marks, you can also sprinkle some cornstarch or baby powder over the stain and let this sit for 15 minutes to absorb the oil.
5. Try your solution of choice in an area that is not visible, then soak
Before proceeding with soaking your stained clothes in the solution, test out a small area of the clothing to check if you are using too much product, which could leave water marks or rings. After making sure that you have the right proportion for your pre-treating solution, soak your stained clothes for at least 15 minutes for fresh stains and up to 24 hours for larger and not so fresh stains.
6. Wash protein and grease stains in cold water
After pre-treating the stains, you can now proceed with putting your clothes in the washing machine for a more thorough cleaning. However, if your stains are protein or grease stains, be sure not to use hot or warm water since the heat will set the stain, making it close to impossible to get rid of food stains on clothes.
7. When in doubt, don’t!
If after doing the whole process, there are still stubborn stains that can’t be removed and you no longer know what to do, then it’s best to leave the cleaning to the professionals. In fact, experts say that the best way to remove food stains from clothes is to scrape off and blot as much as you can, then bring it immediately to a professional cleaner.
At Kelly’s Dry Cleaners, we offer the best Durango laundry services without the risk of damaging delicate fabrics. Bring your stained clothes to us today for a hassle-free laundry experience!