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Laundry Solutions for Holiday Stains

Treat and wash stains promptly!

thanksgiving pieThe longer stains sit on a fabric, the more difficult they may be to remove. American Cleaning Institute’s Senior Vice President, Education Nancy Bock has these tips for removing some holiday stains:

Turkey, gravy, butter, and salad dressing (oil-based stains): Pretreat with a prewash stain remover. Launder in the hottest water that’s safe for the fabric.

Cranberry sauce, apple cider, and pumpkin pie (fruit-based stains): Treat these stains promptly. Remove excess fruit and run the fabric under cold water. Wash the item as soon as possible using the warmest water and bleach that are safe for the fabric.

Coffee, tea, wine, and soft drinks (beverage stains): Soak or sponge stain in cool water. Pretreat with a prewash stain remover or liquid laundry detergent. Launder using oxygen bleach or chlorine bleach, if safe for fabric.

Colorful cakes and desserts (food-coloring stains): Sponge stain promptly with cool water. If this doesn’t remove stain, soak stain in cool water for at least 30 minutes. After soaking, pretreat with a prewash stain remover or liquid laundry detergent, then launder.

Wax stains: Use a dull knife to scrape off surface wax. Place stain between paper towels and press with a warm iron, transferring the wax to the towels. Continue, using clean towels, until the wax no longer transfers. Then, place stain facedown on another clean paper towel and sponge with a prewash stain remover; blot with paper towels. Let dry, then launder.

Soot Stains: Shake out garment. Don’t rub; you may make the stain worse. Launder washable garments using laundry detergent and the hottest water suitable for the garments. Continue laundering garments until soot and/or smoke odor are removed. You may have to launder as many as five times.

For more tips on holiday cleaning see: