Updated: Nov 3
It’s best to treat stains immediately. If you can't treat immediately or have a tricky stain, then you can try these other natural stain fighters.
Always give the product time to work – at least 30 minutes to an hour once you’ve put it on a stain before you attempt to take it off.
Get to the stain immediately. The longer it sets in the worse the stain.
Remove as much as you can before you use heat on a stain (this includes hot water). Using heat prematurely will set the stain into the fabric. Dryer heat is especially good at setting in stains making them nearly impossible to remove.
Blot fresh stains first, never rub. It helps prevent the fraying of fabric and is more effective at removing more of the stain.
Some other websites will recommend that you use enzymes on certain types of stains. Please note that I have not listed them here because enzymes can often cause permanent stains on some types of fabric or weaken fabric, causing the area to be more likely to wear through.
TO BLOT Use a damp towel. Form a knuckle with your index finger and push into the towel. Rock you finger back and forth, move the towel then rock your finger left to right. Repeat. Reapply the cleaner if needed. After the second application of cleaner, again make a knuckle with your index finger. Push your knuckle and the towel into the carpet then twist your wrist clockwise. Carpet fibers are twisted clockwise. This removes the stain from between the fibers without leaving them fuzzy.
Note: Always test an inconspicuous area for colorfastness, etc. before treating the exposed area. Also note that certain stains are permanent FOR GREASY OR OILY STAINS: (oils from food, cooking oils, petroleum products, and some pen inks) Try: Cornstarch or Talcum Powder and Rubbing Alcohol Rub cornstarch (or cornstarch powder or talcum powder) into the stain and let it sit for 20 minutes, then brush off with a dry washcloth or soft dry brush. You may need to repeat several times to revoke the fat. Works especially well on silk and wool. Speed up the process by placing a paper towel above and below the treated spot and going over the area with a steam iron. Rubbing alcohol will also combat grease stains. Pour directly onto the stain and let sit until the stain begins to fade. Grease tends to work itself into fibers and when you think it’s gone, can resurface again after a few washes. Rinsing the stain with vinegar after removing with alcohol will help neutralize the grease so it doesn’t resurface.
PERSPIRATION, SWEAT STAINS & DINGY LOOKING CLOTHES: Try: Sun Bleaching, Hydrogen Peroxide Using bleach regularly actually causes discoloration over time that can cause your clothes and sheets to look dingy. Try filling your washer with water (not for front loading machines) and adding a half cup of hydrogen peroxide to your washer and allow the clothes to soak in the washer for 30 minutes. Then wash normally and use fewer Eco Nuts™. An alternative is sun bleaching. Simply wash with Eco Nuts™ and place it in the sun – either hang or lay flat on grass. The sun can remove ingrained stains from pillow covers, and sheets as well as from cloth diapers.
RUST STAINS: Try: Salt and Lemon Juice Wet the cloth and put a layer of salt (coarse sea salt works best) over the stain then drizzle lemon juice over the salt. Let sit until stain is gone.
BALLPOINT INK STAINS: Try: Milk or White Vinegar Soak in milk. It might take awhile and may also require a milk change in the middle, but it does work. For a Vegan-Friendly stain solution, try using white vinegar.
WINE STAINS: Try: White Vinegar or Club Soda apply white distilled vinegar directly to the stain within 24hours and rub it in. Then launder with Eco Nuts ™. You can also mix 1 teaspoon concentrated Eco Nuts ™ Liquid soap with 1 cup hydrogen peroxide and gently blot onto the stain with a sponge.
CHEWING GUM: Try: White Vinegar Pour straight vinegar over to saturate.
BLOOD STAINS: Try: Cold Water and Hydrogen Peroxide, or Corn Starch Soak in cold water. For stubborn stains, soak in hydrogen peroxide (spot-test to make sure it won’t affect the fabric). Or use a paste of equal parts corn starch and cold water.
COFFEE & TEAS STAINS: Try: White Vinegar or Lemon Juice, or Cream of Tartar Soak the stain in straight white vinegar or lemon juice for one hour. Alternatively, clean with a paste made of cream of tartar and water.
GRASS STAINS: Try: White Vinegar, Baking Soda, Rubbing alcohol Soak the area in white vinegar for at least an hour. If it’s a really tough stain you can try making a paste with baking soada and water. Then pour vinegar over the baking soda. The bubbling from the chemical reaction may help get the stain out. You can also try blotting with water and rubbing alcohol.
TOMATO SAUCE STAINS: Try: White vinegar or Borax Soak in white vinegar. Alternatively make a paste of equal parts Borax and water and rub gently.