Removing Butter Stains

by Amy Gordon
(last updated November 5, 2012)

Butter stains can be tricky to notice, which makes it easier to enjoy covering your corn on the cob in butter. A few drops of butter on a shirt or pair of pants can go unnoticed for a few hours until the butter dries and you have a strange gray grease mark on your pants.

If you've left a butter stain, and now it's dried or already been through the wash, try spraying the stain with WD-40. WD-40 should loosen the stain so you can treat it and get it out. There are a lot of solutions that will remove a butter stain; you are only limited to what you have around your house. A butter stain is an oil stain, and oils can be lifted with most emulsifiers. Most household cleaners are emulsifiers. One thing to remember if you decide to experiment is not to mix a lot of different household cleaners—only use one at a time. Some cleaners create dangerous fumes when combined, and only using one cleaner at a time will make it easier for you to tell which cleaner worked.

The easiest solution to greasy butter stains is to dab some liquid dishwashing detergent onto the stain. The soap acts as an emulsifier to break down the water and grease bonds so that the water can wash away the grease. Apply dishwashing liquid to the stain and toss the garment into the wash. A paste of dry laundry soap and water applied directly to the stained area and allowed to sit for half an hour before going into the wash will also work.

If you pull your article of clothing out of the washing machine and the stain is still there, there are a number of other solutions you can try, including ammonia. (Ammonia may lighten your clothes, so test for colorfastness on a small, hidden area first). You could also try squirting a blob of clear or white shampoo onto the stain before throwing it into the washing machine—the shampoo would work the same way soap would.

A less conventional method is to pour a bit of lighter fluid onto the stain, then rub or brush at the stain to work the butter out before washing the fabric in the machine. Another technique you could try is to spray some hairspray onto the butter stain before putting the article of clothing into the wash. (This method works well on ink stains).

Butter and other grease stains can be inconsistent. Sometimes you can lift the stain easily with one wash, but other times your tried and trusted methods fail you. Try one of the above methods that's new to you, and you might find a new method to add to your arsenal while also saving a favorite or expensive garment.

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! ...

MORE FROM AMY

Naturally Keeping Deer Out of Your Garden

Deer are beautiful creatures if in the right environment. When they are in your garden, they become far less attractive. Keep ...

Discover More

Repair a Scratched Stainless Steel Sink

Stainless steel sinks take a lot of abuse in a lifetime. To revive the look of your stainless steel, use chrome polish from ...

Discover More

Polishing Copper

Copper tarnishes very easily. Instead of buying an expensive copper polish from your hardware store, shine up your copper ...

Discover More

Tough Tools for Tough Cleaning Jobs O-Cel-O sponges and Scotch Brite scrubbers are truly a fashion-meets-function success story. The highly absorbent and durable sponges in this handy six-pack make quick work of tough cleaning problems in any kitchen, bathroom, or garage. Check out Scotch-Brite Heavy Duty Scrub Sponges today!

MORE CLEANING TIPS

Removing Paint from Tile

Removing paint from tile, while frustrating, is entirely possible. All you need to do is know how, and apply a little bit of ...

Discover More

Identifying and Dealing with Unknown Stains

Identifying and dealing with unknown stains can be a real trick sometimes. After all, how do you go about removing something, ...

Discover More

Removing Sweat Stains

When you discover a sweat stain on your shirt, turn the shirt inside out and rub plain white vinegar into the stain. You can ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments for this tip:

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 7 + 8?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Videos

Subscribe to the Tips.Net channel:

Visit the Tips.Net channel on YouTube

Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.

Links and Sharing
Share