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5 Most Common Stains and How To Remove Them

Yes you have spent a lot of money buy a shirt or rug and all of a sudden an ink or whatever drops on it and refuses to let go. In Cleaneat Integrated Services, we are presenting you with some known stubborn stains experienced by Nigerian families and how they can be removed. So before you throw away that blouse you accidentally spilled red wine on, or retire your child’s good jeans because of grass stains, try some of these helpful tips.

Before We Begin

  • The most important aspect of stain removal is pre-treating as soon as possible. The sooner you can soak or pre-treat a stain, the better your chances of being able to remove it.
  • When pre-treating, always test a discreet area of fabric with a pre-treating solution to make sure the product doesn’t damage your garment.
  • Try an enzyme detergent. These detergents are specifically formulated to break down proteins and lift out stains.

And now for the main event: These stains have been the cause of plenty of scrubs, bleachings and soaks over the years, so try these tips before you end up throwing your hands up in frustration — and maybe even the garment into the trash.

  1. Grease/Soup/Oil
    1. Place item stain side down on a stack of paper towels. Apply an oil solvent and allow it to dry then rinse. Machine wash, using the hottest water recommended for the fabric.
    2. Cover stain with an absorbent powder such as cornstarch, baking soda, salt or baby powder and allow it to sit. Brush the powder off but don’t rub it. If stain is persistent use a dry cleaning solvent.
    3. Apply dishwashing soap to the stain and allow it to sit for a few minutes. Blot with a clean cloth then wash in enzyme detergent.

For carpets, blot oil stains with rubbing alcohol.

  1. Ink
    1. The most commonly known remedy has to be hairspray! Place a clean towel or cloth under the stain and spray the ink until saturated. Let it soak for several seconds then blot ink stain with another clean cloth. Repeat this process until gone and wash in enzyme detergent.
    2. Soak item in milk overnight then wash as usual.
    3. Goo Gone is formulated to remove ink stains, launder afterward with enzyme detergent.
  2. Perspiration/Sweat
    1. Use a prewash stain remover and allow it to sit as directed. Wash item in the hottest water recommended for the fabric using an enzyme detergent and oxygen bleach.
    2. After pre-treating with stain remover, use diluted vinegar to remove any remaining color. Rinse thoroughly with cool water.
  3. Lipstick: Apply mineral spirits or acetone (nail-polish remover) to the stain and then scrub with an old toothbrush. Rinse the area with isopropyl alcohol and blot dry. Use a cloth or old toothbrush to work some petroleum jelly into the stain. Rub liquid glycerin into the stain and let it stand for 30 minutes or so
  4. Chewing Gum, Glue and Other Sticky Substances
    1. For gum, freeze the garment (if you are able to) by placing it directly in the freezer. If you can’t, put some ice cubes in a small plastic bag and place it on the clothing where the gum is. When the gum has hardened, you should be able to lift it off with no visible stain remaining.
    2. For glue and other sticky substances, try using a product specifically made for getting rid of goo. These products are formulated to break down sticky residue, allowing it to wash out. Apply product and allow it to work for 10 to15 minutes. Begin working out the sticky substance, repeating as necessary until gone.
    3. Water-based glues (like white school glue) simply need some dish washing liquid and water.

Glues that are permanent, such as epoxy or super glue, will require acetone followed by a thorough rinse and wash.

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