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Some of you may be confused by reading the title because isn’t bleach used to clean clothes? Well, you’re right, but bleach can also be the cause of stains if it’s not handled correctly. Bleach is a harsh chemical that can cause intense colors to fade or discolor if used on the wrong kind of materials.
Luckily, in some cases, bleach does not harm the clothes beyond recognition, and you can repair them to their former glory. How? By using the methods, we have listed out below for you! In this article, we’ll teach you how to get bleach out of clothing as soon as possible and save your colored clothes from a tragic fate.
How To Get Bleach Out Of Clothes
Start With Neutralizing The Bleach Stain
The most important thing to remember when dealing with bleach stains on clothing is to act quickly. But before you start trying out these methods, the stain must be neutralized. This step will help you remove the excess bleach and make it safer to combine chlorine bleach with other cleaning solutions.
Step 1- Rinse off the bleach from the fabric.
Step 2- Mix baking soda and water to create a thick paste and spread it on the spread. Make sure it covers the entire area nicely.
Step 3- Let it sit to dry, and once done, wipe off with an old toothbrush.
This will neutralize the bleach stain and make it ready for you to clean effortlessly. Just follow any cleaning method mentioned below, and you’re good to go!
1. Clear Alcohol
Clear alcohol or drinking alcohol is a savior in such situations. You can use any clear alcohol-vodka or gin- to bring back the color to your clothes. This procedure works best on materials that are water-soluble dyes, such as cotton, but it can also be used on synthetic, dye-fast materials like polyester.
How to use it:
Step 1- Dip either a cotton swab into the clear alcohol of your choice.
Step 2- Use the wet swab to dab the alcohol over the discolored area in a circling motion, from the stained region into the dyed one, in an effort to reverse the color transfer. The color should return to the bleached section due to this step.
Step 3- Let the fabric air dry when the stain is fully covered and wash it as usual to ward of any unpleasant smell.
2. Rubbing Alcohol
Unlike clear alcohol, rubbing alcohol can be used to target large bleach stains on both black and color-fast fabrics. It is also one of the cheapest methods of treating a garment with bleach stains.
How to use it:
Step 1- Dab a cotton ball into rubbing alcohol and apply it directly onto the bleach stain. Make sure there is enough liquid to cover the entire stained area.
Step 2- Work the swab in an outwards to middle motion. Leave your cotton swab in place for 15 to 20 minutes.
Step 3- Rinse the garment with cold or lukewarm water in a sink or tub, depending on how big the affected area is. Let it air dry after rinsing off.
3. Diluted Sodium Thiosulfate
Diluted Sodium Thiosulfate is a bleaching agent that works well on clothes or other textiles that are not colorfast. It is also an excellent solvent that helps remove stains previously left by bleach, which is why we think it’s perfect for the job!
Sodium thiosulfate products labeled as chlorine neutralizers should be used for bleach stains since they include chlorine. Also, keep in mind that this method is most successful if the stain is fresh. If the stain is ancient, this may not altogether remove it.
How to use it:
Step 1- Mix one teaspoon of Sodium Thiosulfate with two cups of water in a container. If you’re doing this at your home, we would like to suggest not using regular-use utensils. A disposable bowl is the safest best when mixing sodium thiosulphate.
Step 3- Use either a clean white towel or cotton balls to soak into this solution. Blot the stain until the fabric begins to absorb the diluted sodium thiosulfate.
Pro tip: Wear gloves while applying the solution to avoid stains on your hands.
Step 4- Rinse the area again under cold water if the stain isn’t gone. Re-apply the solution as soon as the stain begins to lift.
Step 5- To finish the task, wash the garment as usual and dry it.
4. Fabric Dye
Dyeing the fabric is an ideal way to remove bleach stains, as it is a permanent solution. You may use dye in a variety of ways to conceal bleached regions. For example, if your light-colored skirt has been damaged by bleach, you could try tie-dying it to reinvent it into something exciting! But you need to be extra careful while dyeing your clothes since different dyes react differently with fabrics.
Before you begin, double-check the instructions on the box to ensure that you’re following them correctly. Some dyes need specific procedures, such as boiling water.
How to use it:
Step 1- Keep in mind all the necessary precautions for dyeing and handling dye. Protect your workspace by laying out newspapers so that the solution doesn’t reach the floors.
Step 2- Mix the dye according to the instructions on the box. If you’re using a color-fast fabric, try boiling it and adding your preferred color. If there are no instructions present, take a disposable plastic cup and combine one teaspoon of dye powder, one teaspoon of salt, and two tablespoons of water.
Step 3- To remove the bleach stain, use a toothbrush to apply the dye solution. Soak the cloth thoroughly by dabbing the dye on it.
Step 4- Dye the garment and let it dry outside in the sunlight. The sun will cause bleached areas to be dyed darkly so that they can’t be seen anymore.
Step 5- Wash and dry normally to see if it has the desired results.
5. Dish Soap
If you’re planning on how to stop the bleach that you just spilled on your favorite sweater from setting in, then the dish soap is your best bet. Usually, bleach stains don’t come out of clothes with soap. But you can successfully remove the bleach from a tiny stain using diluted dishwashing soap, especially if it is on light-colored fabric.
You can use dish soap on bleach stains without neutralizing the stain first. So if you want to tackle a bleach stain instantly, then this method is a great way to go about it.
How to use it:
Step 1- Take a clean bowl and combine dish detergent with lukewarm water. Stir the solution until all the bubbles disappear.
Pro tip: Be sure that you’re using soap meant explicitly for cleaning clothes or delicate fabrics, as regular dish soap can cause damage to your fabric with prolonged use.
Step 2- Douse a clean washcloth in the solution. Use it to blot the bleach stain gently. Do not rub the stain at any cost, as it could lead to more damage.
Step 3- Let the solution seep into the garment for five-ten minutes
Step 4- Put a clean white cloth in plain cold water. Blot the stained area thoroughly and follow with a dry white cloth until the fabric is dry.
Step 5- Once the stain has lifted, put the fabric in the washing machine and let it wash as usual.
6. Fabric Marker
Bleach may have turned your clothes into a colorless piece of fabric, but who said you couldn’t color it back? A fabric marker is ideal for covering up bleach stains on dark-colored clothes, primarily black. There are great varieties of markers available online, but make sure that you’re picking the right one for your clothes before you begin!
How to use it:
Step 1 – Find a marker that matches or complements your clothing, as it will be used to draw over the bleached area.
Step 2 – Make sure that your clothing is clean and dry before starting this procedure. If it is wet, then let it air-dry first.
Step 3 – Read the product directions for any marker you’re considering buying. Some fabric markers are specific to natural fabrics, but not others, such as polyester. Confirm that the marker will work on your clothing before using it.
Step 4- Draw over the bleached area with the marker! Your clothes should look like they did before the accident, without any stains.
Step 5- Let the marker dry for at least 20 minutes before wearing your clothes.
If you want to know how to remove bleach stains without harsh chemicals, then vinegar is your best bet. White distilled vinegar has the power to lift out any kind of stain that comes in contact with it. It is also known to restore white clothes, which have turned yellow over time!
How to use it:
Step 1- Be careful not to mix vinegar with bleach directly. Neutralizing the stain as a precautionary step is vital so as not to damage the fabric further.
Step 2- Mix one tbsp of vinegar with two cups of cold water and soak a clean cloth in this solution. Place the rag on the bleached area.
Step 3- Leave it there for at least ten minutes or more, depending on how fast a reaction you want between the bleach and the vinegar.
Step 4- Take a new, clean cloth with cold water and blot the stained area. The stain should lift a bit with just a single application of vinegar on it. If it doesn’t, you can try applying more diluted vinegar to the same area and leave it for up to half an hour before rinsing it with cold water again.
Step 5- To remove stains, use a clean cloth to absorb the dampness. Blot until the smell subsides. Ensure you wash the cloth carefully to avoid damaging the fibers and weakening them.
What’s A Great Alternative If None Of The Methods Work?
One option most people miss out on is altering the garment. If you fail to remove the bleach stain and it’s not salvageable, you can always upcycle the cloth.
You can modify the garment by cutting or cropping it. You might also completely alter the color of the whole outfit by bleaching it. Another option is to use patches that will hide the bleach stains and give your garments a unique vintage feel.
How To Prevent Bleach Stains
Precaution against bleach is undoubtedly the lesser evil than trying to remove it from your clothes. Here are a few conscious steps that you can take to avoid getting bleach stains;
1. Wear protective or old clothing when working with bleach. Even the tiniest amount of bleach splatter can cause a strain on your clothing
2. Don’t use bleach on garments that don’t allow it. If a company advises against whitening a polyester shirt using bleach, then you should avoid it as it could lead to yellowness.
3. Don’t use chlorine bleach to remove stains from clothing that have been dyed. Look for color-safe oxygen bleaching instead.
Bleach, when used correctly, can be pretty beneficial. However, it can also produce deadly stains that would render your clothing damaged if left unchecked, so make sure you’re applying it accurately and preventing bleach stains from occurring on your clothes. This guide provides you with not only seven useful methods but also tips on how to prevent stains altogether.