5 Ways to Remove Coffee Stains from Clothes

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This article is part of a series on how to remove all sorts of stains from your clothes, in this case, coffee. So if you want to remove other types of stains from your clothes check out the following articles:

How to Remove Rust Stains from Clothes
How to Remove Ink Stains from Clothes
How to Remove Deodorant Stains from Clothes
How to Remove Oil Stains from Clothes
How to Remove Grease Stains from Clothes
How to Remove Blood Stains from Clothes

Coffee stains can be particularly difficult to remove from your clothes. That light brown color can be successfully removed only if you go through a good cleaning guide. We all know how frustrating it is to deal with latte spills on a brand new shirt. Here’s our step-by-step approach to getting the coffee stains out of any garment. This guide is intended for common types of fabrics so keep in mind that delicate materials like silk will probably require professional cleaning. It’s strongly recommended to look at the label if you’re not sure how to proceed.

1. Blot the Stain

Assuming the stain is fresh, the first step is to get your hands on a powerful absorbent material. A paper towel will work well to eliminate excess liquid from the spill. It will also make the cleaning task easier. If you act quickly you can take out many of the chemicals from the stain. Those are the ones which give off the characteristic light brown color.

2. Rinse With Cold Water

When it comes to stains on clothes, cold water should be the first choice. Coffee spills are no exception here as quick rinsing with cold water should make it a breeze to loosen the stain. Let the water run on the stain for a couple of minutes and try to rub the stain in a gentle manner if you need to deal with a really stubborn stain. Fresher stains should be mostly gone if you are persistent with this step. For older ones or more difficult spills, it’s time to proceed to the next cleaning stage.

3. Add Detergent

Persistent coffee stains require detergent treatment. Place a small quantity of liquid detergent on the wet surface of the spill. After ensuring the detergent reaches the full area of the stain, let the garment sit for some minutes. Older stains might require longer wait times. Check the coffee stain after 5 minutes to see if it can be loosened using your hands. Don’t forget to rinse with cold water after the detergent finished its job.

4. Use Vinegar

In case the detergent wasn’t that effective, there’s another trick left that’s worth trying. By using a special vinegar mixture, you will be able to get rid of the most persistent coffee stains. Add equal parts of vinegar and water with a bit of powdered detergent to create a powerful cleaning paste.

Before attempting to use the mixture on the stain, it’s important to test it for discoloring. Find a part of your cloth that’s usually hidden from view and test there your vinegar cleaning solution. If it affects the color of your garment’s fabric, move directly to the next step. If the mixture passes the test, then you can go ahead and tackle your stubborn coffee stain. For some increased effectiveness, try to use a toothbrush to scrub the stain more thoroughly.

5. Go for a Stain Stick

If nothing seems to work well, a good solution is to try a stain stick like this one from Amazon. These products are specifically designed to remove very difficult stains. They’re also fairly versatile allowing you to treat different types of stains, including tough coffee spills.

Stain sticks work well when you don’t have access to a washing machine. When you get home, it’s recommended to wash the stained cloth quickly like you normally deal with laundry. Make sure the coffee stain is gone before taking the garment to your tumble dryer. Heat will make things worse if the stain isn’t removed.


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