Cooking dinner in your favorite outfit may not be ideal, but sometimes life calls for a quick meal. Unfortunately, this may leave your go-to pair of jeans soiled with an oil stain. Whether you spilled a plate of french fries on your clothes or simply added too much olive oil to the pan, your grease stain is no match for a few tools from your pantry. You’ll need a few classic items to fully remove the stain, including baking soda, dish soap, and an old toothbrush.
PureWow explains that starting with water is a no-go — it will only make things worse. So, avoid scrubbing the grease stain or adding liquid and lay it flat. The sooner you start working on the stain, the better. That way, it can’t fully set, Apartment Therapy notes.
Begin by adding a few drops of dish soap to the stain to lift it. You can take the toothbrush to gently rub the soap in or use your hands, Grove.co explains. For a tougher stain — or just to make sure that you fully remove the spot — grab the baking soda. You can make a pile that spreads over the stain to fully cover it for best results. Let it sit for at least a half hour before the next step; Grove.co reports that it takes about an hour for the two substances to work together and fully remove the stain.
Let the baking soda sit
After letting the baking soda sit, grab the old toothbrush to further lift the spot by brushing it out. Grove.co notes that it should form a hard paste at this point, as this is now the oil that it’s pulling out. Now you can rinse the stubborn grease stain out as well. Rinse gently with hot water and let it soak in a tub of hot water for an hour, the outlet suggests. Check to see if the stain is lifted and if so, add to the washing machine. Once washed, let the garment air dry. This step is important. Note that if you place the clothing item in the dryer and the stain isn’t fully removed, the heat will set it permanently, AirTasker explains.
However, if you can still see the oil after you remove your clothes from the washing machine, go back to the baking soda and dish soap steps, brushing out the excess oil each time. You may need to let it sit for longer or add another tool like WD40 — yes, really. Even though it may cause stains itself, WD40’s ingredient list helps break up oil that gets stuck onto clothes (per The Spruce). Make sure to add a piece of cardboard in between the back and front side of the clothing item so the spray doesn’t stain the opposite side. Add this step before spraying with a stain remover and toss it in the wash. But, for a powerful, natural clean, baking soda should work on your toughest stains.
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