Removing Stains from Denim

by Amy Gordon
(last updated October 28, 2013)

How many times have you rued the grease stain on your favorite pair of jeans, convinced it will never go away? Well, if you follow the tips I am about to share with you, you will no longer have to toss those denims just because they are just too stained for you to continue wearing.

As a rule, denim is not a particularly high-maintenance fabric, but removing stains from denim can be a difficult job if the stain has been there for a long time. As with all stains, you must try and clean the spillage immediately after it forms. The residual stain will usually disappear when treated with a simple detergent wash.

Blood stains

If the stains are fresh, wipe them immediately after they form with a clean white cloth soaked in cold water (NEVER warm), repeating the process until the cloth comes off clean. Once the stain has vanished, dry the area with clean, absorbent paper towels.

For dried blood stains, mix a mild detergent with cold water and wet the stained area with a clean cloth. Once you blot the stain, some it will come off. For the residue, mix some ammonia in cold water and once again blot the stain. By now, most of the stain ought to have disappeared. If you still see some residue, sponge it with a clean cloth soaked in cold water.

A few people suggest peroxide to clean the stain easily, but peroxide can cause further damage to denim and bleach it.

Food and oil stains

The first thing to do is to blot the stained area with a cloth soaked in dry-cleaning solvent. Then, sponge the area gently with a mixture of a mild detergent and tepid water. This blotting and sponging should remove most food and grease stains. You should wipe off the residual detergent with a damp cloth.

Wax, chewing gum and crayon stains

Wax, chewing gum, and crayon stains are usually the most difficult stains to remove because they harden very quickly and penetrate the fabric. The first thing to do is remove the residue with a dull scraping tool such as a butter knife. Next, take a cube of ice and apply it to the stain, rubbing it gently until the ice melts. Ice hardens the stain and enables you to scrape it off.

Fruit, chocolate, and beverage stains

Using a mixture of a mild detergent and tepid water, gently blot the stained area. Blotting ought to get rid of some of the stain. The second step is to blot the stain with a mixture of one part white vinegar and three parts water. As an alternative, you can use soda. Next, apply the detergent solution once more on the stain. This second application should remove the stain completely. Finally, clean the area with plain water.

Grease stains

Grease stains most often result from petroleum-based spills, and the stains are extremely stubborn. Using solvent cleaners can usually remove the grease, but these cleaners may contain bleaching agents that can damage the fabric, so make sure to try them on some inconspicuous area of your garment before you apply them on the stain.

The best way to go about it is to blot the stain with the solvent. Now, use the familiar mix of mild detergent and tepid water and gently blot the stain. Third, use a clean white cloth dipped in some alcohol to further blot the stain. This should take care of the matter, but if the stain remains, try scrubbing it gently with dishwashing detergent and then rinsing the area with a mixture of white vinegar and water.

Ink stains

You can use a variety of substances to remove ink stains from denim, among them dry-cleaning solvent, hairspray, acetone, alcohol, and turpentine, but you must follow up the initial blotting with a gentle dabbing with mild detergent and water. Finally, you must rinse with plain water.

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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