Removing Deodorant and Antiperspirant Stains

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated January 9, 2017)

Have you ever noticed how often white shirts collect stains around the armpits? It doesn't seem to matter if it is a white t-shirt, blouse, or button-up shirt, over time a deodorant stain will appear there. These stains can come from people spraying their deodorant on directly through the shirt, or over time from the fabric coming into contact with your skin and the deodorant as it evaporates. Removing deodorant stains doesn't need to be all that difficult if you simply use one of these methods.

  • Powdered dish soap. A fairly effective method for removing deodorant stains is to use a little bit of warm water and some powdered dish soap. Get some of the powdered dish soap that you use for a dishwasher, and sprinkle it into a sink filled with warm water. Agitate the water enough so that the soap is completely dissolved into the water, and then add the shirts. For moderate stains you should only need to allow the shirts to soak for about two or three hours, while heavier more set in stains will need to be soaked overnight. After soaking, wash the clothing as normal to remove the deodorant stains.
  • White vinegar. Just as with powdered dish soap, you can use some white vinegar to help remove deodorant stains. There are two ways that you can use the white vinegar to remove the stains. The first is by pouring a cup or two into a large sink or tub filled with warm water, and allowing the shirts to soak for an hour or two. The second method is to use a 25/75 solution (with 25 percent being the white vinegar, and the remaining 75 percent being water) and spray it onto the stains. This will act as a pretreater and allow you to wash the stains away.
  • OxyClean. OxyClean is great at removing a large number of stains, and can help you to remove deodorant stains from your white shirts. Simply follow the direction on the package, and you shouldn't have any trouble removing the stains.
  • Bleach. If the material that you are cleaning is tough enough, you can simply bleach the stains away. Before you begin using the bleach, test the fabric out to ensure that there won't be any degradation or damage to it. Once the fabric has passed this test pour between one and two cups of bleach into your washing machine, and wash the clothing as normal. Check the garments to ensure that they are stain free before you actually place them into the dryer.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...


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