Ask Holly: The Art of Stain Removal

Summer = stains.

Grass, ketchup, Popsicles, mud, Mommy’s wine….the whole bit. I swear if I dress my four-year-old in anything other than navy blue and dark brown he sees it as a personal challenge to get filthy before Mommy has had her second cup of coffee.

After having children I became addicted to OxiClean. It got the poop out, what else can I say? The only stain I haven’t been able to conquer was an eye dropper full of those brown liquid infant vitamins. Nasty stuff. Goodbye cute pink dress.

Here are the things I swear by to get rid of stains:


OxiClean: The thing with Oxi Clean is it works the best when you use boiling water. The other tip I will give you is when the Oxi Clean and  boiling water meet–that stuff foams up. Make sure you’re soaking the clothes in a deep sink or large bowl. Follow the instructions on the package for proportions. I use  Oxi Clean for anything that I know my super duper, crappy washing machine will not get out. I swear sometime the clothes just get wet and spun. I even use it on thing that have been washed and dried.

Zout: a pre-treaterand  an enzyme cleaner. The key with pre-treaters is that they works best the sooner they are used (not like the way I use them, about five minutes before I load the washing machine). Spray the Zout on the stain and gently rub the Zout into the stain let it sit for about 5 minutes before washing.

Carbona Stain Devils: I love these little yellow bottles. My favorite hands down is the fat/cooking oil formula. I usually dab some Carbona on the stain and a little bit of Zout (depending I’ve already run it through the dryer and discovered the oil stain while folding clothes).

Goof Off: I use this only for paint stains. The stuff stinks to the high heavens and will stink up a whole load of clothes if not rinsed out properly before washing. Just follow the instructions and don’t over do it!

Bleach and bleach pens: I avoid bleach because the damage it can do to fabrics. But I have had good luck with bleach pens. Be careful though, because nothing is more annoying than trying to take a stain out of one thing and putting a bleach mark on the shirt you are wearing.

Questions? Just Ask Holly in comments.

What is the one stain you just cannot remove?

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