How To Remove Colour Bleeding Stains From Clothes

A man concerned about how to remove colour bleeding stains from clothes
How to remove colour bleeding stains from clothes

Table of Contents

The sight of colour bleeding stains often triggers panic. However, it is possible to get rid of such stains easily. In this blog, we have explained how to remove colour bleeding stains from clothes using the right products and restore stained garments to their original state.

Here’s what exactly you can expect from this blog:

So, let’s see how you can do it:

Steps To Remove Colour Bleeding Stains From Clothes

STEP 1: Gather everything that you need

Keep everything that you need for stain removal handy so that you don’t have to run around the house while cleaning. Here is all that you may require:

  • Wash Tub
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Oxybleach
  • Chlorine bleach
  • White Vinegar
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Colour remover
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Paper towel

You don’t have to collect all the stain removers mentioned above like oxybleach, chlorine bleach, white vinegar, etc. Depending on the care label, colour and fabric of the garment you will need any one of these. In the upcoming sections we have explained which stain remover is suitable for different garments, so keep reading.

STEP 2: Rewash the stained garment

Lady putting garment having colour bleeding stains in the machine for rewashing
Garment with colour bleeding stain to be rewashed

Sometimes colour bleeding stains go away just with rewashing. Place the stained garment separately in the washer. Add your regular laundry detergent and wash the clothing using cool water on a normal wash cycle. 

If rewashing doesn’t help in removing colour bleeding stains then follow the further steps.

STEP 3: Identify the suitable stain remover

One should refer following parameters before identifying the suitable stain remover for color bleeding stains:

  • Garment care label
  • Colour
  • Fabric

Let’s see each of these in detail:

(I) On the basis of garment care label

Bleach is commonly used for removing colour bleeding stains. However, you should read the label carefully to know if it is okay to use bleach on the garment. In case the garment cannot tolerate bleach you should use white vinegar after diluting it with water.

(II) On the basis of colour

You can use white vinegar on both white and coloured clothes. However, never apply it directly to the stained area as the acidic nature may lighten the colour. Dilute vinegar with cool water.

If it is okay to use bleach then you have two options: Chlorine bleach and Oxybleach

Chlorine bleach is stronger than oxy bleach. Hence, it can remove tough colour bleeding stains. It also acts as a good deodorizer. However, it can only be used on white clothes as it can lighten/ fade out the colours. You can easily purchase chlorine bleach like Clorox from pharmacy stores. We do not recommend the frequent use of chlorine bleach as it weakens the fabric.

To remove colour bleeding stains from coloured clothes you should always use Oxybleach. Some popular oxygen bleaches available in the market includes OxiClean, Nellie’s All-Natural Oxygen Brightener, Ariel Oxybleach and OXO Brite. You can purchase any of them easily online or in your nearest retail stores.

Colour bleeding stains removers containing oxybleach which can be easily found in the markets
Oxybleach for colour bleeding stain removal

(III) On the basis of fabric

  • For cotton: You can use vinegar or Oxybleach on all cotton clothes. Chlorine bleach should be used only on white cotton clothes.
  • For wool: Wool is an extremely delicate fabric. Hence, using vinegar or bleach may damage the fibre. You can only try rewashing the garment using wool-safe mild detergents like Ezee for stain removal. If the stain still persists then it is better to get dry clean service. Because dry cleaners have a wide range of pro-fabric chemicals other than bleach which can remove the colour bleeding stains without damaging the wool fibres. 
PRO TIP:
Make sure you keep the woollen clothes on a flat surface to dry after rewashing. Woollens are prone to deformity, and hanging will make the garment lose its shape.
  • For synthetic fibres: Nylon, Polyester, Olefin, Acrylic, etc. are some synthetic fibres. We do not recommend using harsh chlorine bleach as it might dissolve and damage the plastic used in these synthetic fibres and weaken the fabric. You can use Oxybleach. 

STEP 4: Use the stain remover

Once you have identified a suitable stain remover, perform a patch test before using that to see how the fabric reacts. If it does not cause any harm to the fabric, go ahead. Here is how you can use different types of stains removers on colour bleeding stains:

(I) White Vinegar

Take 1 cup (235 ml) of vinegar. Pour it into a tub filled with one galloon (approximately 3.8 litres) of cool water. Diluting the vinegar is important otherwise its acidic nature can lighten the shade of the garment. Soak the stained garment for 30 minutes.

(II) Bleach

Add ¼ cup (60ml) of bleach with 1 gallon (approximately 3.8 litres) of cool water in a washtub or in your sink. Soak the stained garment for 6-8 hours. The bleach will push the stain out of the garment.

STEP 5: Use colour remover (Only on white clothes)

Soaking white garment in water containing colour remover for getting rid of colour bleeding stain
Soaking white garment in water containing colour remover

If the colour bleeding stain still persists, you can use a colour remover. Blonco, Rit, and Carbona are some colour removers that you can easily purchase online via Amazon. Do a patch test by soaking a small area of the garment to see how the fabrics react to the colour remover. 

Add the colour remover to water (according to the package instructions). Soak the stained garment for 10-15 minutes (refer to the package instructions as the duration may vary from product to product).

The chemicals used in colour removers can fade out the colour. Hence, we recommend using colour removers on white clothes only.

STEP 6: Rinse, laundry and air-dry the garment

Take out the garment from the tub or sink. Rinse the garment with cool water to get rid of the residue of stain remover. Then put it in the washer. Add your regular laundry detergent with normal water. Run the machine on a gentle cycle. Then, air-dry the garment.

How to Prevent Colour Bleeding Stains?

How to prevent colour bleeding stains
How to prevent colour bleeding stains

It is good to know how to remove colour bleeding stains, it is even better to know how to prevent them. Follow these safe laundry practices and keep such colour bleeding stains away:

  • Always read the care label: Manufactures often issue a warning on the garment care label, especially in case of dark coloured clothes. Sometimes it is mentioned to wash clothes separately.
  • Separate laundry on the basis of colours: Even the best quality dark coloured garments can bleed colours. So, you should never put your light and dark coloured clothes together in the washer. 
  • Take out the clothes right after the wash cycle ends: Don’t leave your wet clothes in the machine drum for a long time. Always take out the clothes and leave them to dry right after the wash cycle ends.

By taking care of these little things while doing laundry you can actually save your clothes from colour bleeding stains. Be a little cautious and stay stress-free.

When You Should Visit Professional Dry Cleaners for Stain Removal?

Drycleaners can remove colour bleeding stains as they have a wide range of chemicals
Drycleaner removes colour bleeding stain

Let’s quickly have a look at some cases where it is better to visit the dry cleaners than take charge of stain removal at home. 

  • When the stains are long settled: It may be hard to remove stains at home if they have been settled in the fabric for too long. You will need expert dry cleaners to remove such stains completely.
  • When you don’t have enough time: Stain removal takes time. If you don’t have spare time to treat stains, consider sending the garment to dry cleaners. 
  • When the fabric is delicate: In case you have stained your heavily embellished garment or something delicate as silk or wool, let your nearest dry cleaner take over. Such clothes need extra care and in-depth knowledge about stain removal and dry cleaning which you might lack. Hence, it is better to let the experts take care of your clothes.

Key Takeaway on How To Remove Colour Bleeding Stains

Rewash the stained garment, if it doesn’t remove the stain you will need stain removers. Read the garment care label to see whether the fabric can tolerate bleach or not. If it is bleach-sensitive you can use vinegar. If you can use bleach, then choose between Oxybleach and chlorine bleach on the basis of colour and fabric. You can also use colour removers on white clothes. 

Along with knowing how to remove colour bleeding stains from clothes, you should follow safe laundry practices to prevent such stains as well.

In case the colour bleeding stains are too stubborn, you can simply visit your nearest dry cleaner. If you are not sure about handling heavily embellished or delicate fabric, then also you should send such clothes for professional dry cleaning.

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