Removing Hair Gel Stains from Fabric

by Lecia DeBrine
(last updated June 30, 2014)

Of all the products available for styling hair, gel seems to be one of the most popular choices because of its versatility and hold. Yet the texture of most gels makes it quite easy to get loose a drip here or a glob there and they always seem to drop in the most inconvenient places, on our clothes, bedding, sofas, I have even managed to get hair gel on my curtains before. Luckily there are some very manageable ways of getting rid of these stains.

Removing hair gel stains from clothing only takes a few simple steps:

  1. Using a spoon, scrape off the excess heir gel the best you can. After you have removed all that will come off next you want to blot the area to pull it out of the fibers. This will prevent the hair gel from spreading in the next step and keep your stained spot to a minimal size.
  2. Pretreat the stain with a stain remover that is safe to use on your fabric. This is good for dried on stains because not only does it work to break down the gel so it can be washed out, but it also treats the stain left by the hair gel. If you do not have a stain remover you can also use some water with a little detergent in it. Wet the entire area thoroughly and let it sit for a minute or two, and then lightly scrub the spot with a toothbrush. If you cannot put the clothing directly into the washer rinse the stain with warm water and let it sit until it can go in the wash.
  3. In the hottest water that is safe for the fabric, wash the clothing in whichever cycle is normally used. If you let the article sit before washing you may need to repeat step 2 before doing so. The hot water and pretreatment should have removed the stain completely, but if it is still there repeat steps 2 and 3 until it is gone. Do not put the garment in your dryer until the stain has disappeared, this will only set the stain into the fibers of your clothing.

If the stain is in upholstery the method of removing the stain is a little different.

  1. Once again you will want to discard any extra gel left on the fabric by gently skimming the fabric with a stiff edge and blotting the rest out with a clean cloth or paper towel.
  2. To absorb what is left of the gel in your fabric sprinkle baking soda or cornstarch over the area and let it sit on the stain, vacuum up the powder after about fifteen minutes. Of course if your stain is already dry this step can be skipped.
  3. Using a dry cleaning solvent wet the spot lightly and blot out the moisture with a dry cloth, repeat this step until the stain is gone.

As with most stains, the fresher the spot the easier and quicker it should be to remove, older dried stains will naturally take longer to come out. Patience and elbow grease can work wonders on just about anything, so give yourself some time to work the stain out.

Author Bio

Lecia DeBrine

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