Removing Coffee and Tea Stains from Cups

by Amy Gordon
(last updated December 3, 2018)

Do you have coffee and tea stains that simply refuse to come out of your cup or mug? You can remove stubborn coffee or tea stains from your china cups and mugs by trying one of the techniques below. The quickest methods are listed first, though they require a little more effort on your part.

  • Start by wetting the cup or mug. When it is thoroughly covered with water, scrub the stains with a few pinches of salt or sugar on a dishcloth. This can take a lot of scrubbing, but it should be effective. Just make sure you don't use too much water—you don't want the salt or sugar to fully dissolve. (The abrasive action of the salt or sugar helps to scour the stain from the porcelain or ceramic surface.)
  • Another method you can try if you do not want to do the previous method or it fails to work is to make a paste by mixing about a teaspoon of baking soda with a little water. (It also works to make a paste of baking soda and lemon juice.) Apply the paste to a dishcloth and scrub the stain.
  • Finally, one last method is to scrub the stain with a 50/50 mixture of one teaspoon of salt and one teaspoon of white vinegar. If you need more, just be sure to keep the same proportions.

If you have more time, are willing to wait, and do not want to put as much effort into the cleaning, try any of these overnight methods:

  • First, assuming the stain is on the inside of the cup or mug, fill it up with a denture-cleaning solution and allow it to soak overnight. This should lift the stain right out.
  • If that does not work, or if you want to get the outside of the cup or mug, allow it to soak overnight in a solution of four ounces of household bleach in just over three pints of water. Like always, be careful when handling bleach, and make sure it stays out of reach of children.

No matter which technique you use, make sure to follow your cleaning by rinsing the cup or mug thoroughly with water. When it is completely rinsed off, dry it off with a clean, dry cloth or let it air dry.

Author Bio

Amy Gordon

Amy Gordon loves keeping things simple, natural, and safe so she can spend more time having fun. Every day she learns new things about making life at home easier and she loves to share it with you! ...

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