Let’s face it: children will always get stains on their clothes.
It doesn’t matter how often you supervise their play or meal times, or what they wear, you can guarantee that there will always be some stains on kids clothes!
For the most part, stained clothing isn’t a big deal for you because your washing machine and laundry detergent choice will take care of the problem.
However, there are some stains on kids clothes that are particularly challenging to remove.
We’ve all ended up facing this problem. Yet, some parents might find it easier to write off the offending article of clothing in question.
Is there some miracle stain remover that you can use?
The truth is, there’s no single product or concoction of chemicals (natural or otherwise) you can use to tackle all stains all of the time.
The good news is you can successfully get rid of stains if you know what caused them and use the right tools for the job.
Here are six genius hacks to shift stubborn stains on kids clothes:
1. Breast Milk and Formula Milk Stains
It’s no secret that babies and toddlers need feeding a lot every day!
Sometimes when you feed your little ones breast milk or formula milk, their clothing might get stained.
The problem isn’t so bad if you happen to wash or pre-soak their clothes soon after the stain occurs.
Of course, stains that linger for more than 24 hours might be hard to shift - especially formula milk. What can you do to get rid of milk stains from baby clothing?
How to remove breast milk stains
Breast milk stains are relatively easy to remove. You can usually put baby and toddler clothing with such stains in the wash without any further action.
For tough stains, use an extra rinse cycle and hang the clothing to dry in the sun afterwards. If that doesn’t work, dab a bit of lemon juice on the stain and hang the item to dry once more.
How to remove formula milk stains
Formula milk stains are more challenging to remove because of the ingredients. Still, it’s possible to tackle them and have blemish-free baby clothing once again!
Firstly, use a soft yet stiff brush to agitate the stain. Next, put the item in a small washing-up bowl and sprinkle some bicarbonate of soda on the stain.
Now for the fun part: pour a bit of sparkling water on the bicarbonate of soda and watch it fizz!
Once the fizzing stops, you can put the garment in your washing machine and wash it as usual.
2. Baby Sick
All parents will have the joy of dealing with baby sick, whether their little ones are newborns or older babies.
If your washing machine hasn’t completely removed baby sick stains, don’t worry because you can still get rid of the stain.
You need to fill a washing up bowl or bucket with hot water, add some washing-up liquid, and mix the two.
Next, add the stained baby clothing and leave it to soak overnight. In the morning, put it into your washing machine and wash it as usual but add an extra rinse cycle.
3. Oil and Grease
Has your child decided to feed their clothing along with their tummy? If so, you might panic if you’re facing an oily or greasy stain on their clothes.
Relax! All you have to do is remove any excess food stains from the garment, lay it down flat somewhere, and cover the oily or greasy stain with one of the following:
Bicarbonate of Soda.
Let the stain soak up the flour or powder you’ve added for 15 minutes. Afterwards, scrape it off and stick the clothing in the wash as usual.
4. Pen and Paint
Sometimes, kids can get carried away when they’re being creative with pens and paint. They will often accidentally mark their clothing.
Water-based pens and paint will usually wash away as usual in your washing machine.
Tougher stains, such as those on white garments, will demand some extra action. Lay the clothing down flat on a surface and rub some washing-up liquid on the stains.
Leave it for half an hour, rinse the garment, and repeat the above step. Afterwards, wash it as usual with an extra rinse cycle.
5. Permanent Marker Pen
The ideas in #4 above work great with most pens and paint. But, what happens if your child stained their clothing with a permanent marker pen?
One secret about permanent marker pens is the ink isn’t always permanent! There are three main methods of removing permanent marker pen stains:
Alcohol-based products - isopropyl alcohol, hairspray, and nail polish remover;
Household products - white vinegar and washing-up liquid, and bicarbonate of soda;
Commercial stain remover products.
Whichever product you use, the way to treat permanent marker pen stains is the same:
Put a paper towel underneath the stain;
Apply the product(s) on the stain by dabbing it first and let it soak for 5-15 minutes;
Rinse and repeat the above steps until the permanent marker pen stain diminishes;
Wash the garment separately and with an extra rinse cycle.
6. Accidental Colour Bleed Stains
You don’t need us to tell you why it’s essential to separate your white clothes from dyed ones!
Of course, parents will sometimes accidentally mix their clothes in the wash. If your child’s white garment is now a lovely shade of pink, what can you do about it?
The solution is simple. All you need to do is put the garment in a washing-up bowl and add a diluted mix of bleach and water!
Leave the clothing to soak for around ten minutes, and then wash it as usual in your washing machine.
What about commercial fabric stain removers?
Head into your local supermarket, and you’ll come across various fabric stain remover products.
Why should you avoid using them?
One thing to bear in mind is that they contain all kinds of chemicals. Some of those ingredients can irritate the skin and even cause respiratory problems. For example:
Pareth-5 can cause skin irritation and allergies;
Subtilisin, Amylase, Lipase, and Mannanase can cause respiratory problems;
Hexyl Cinnamal poses a moderate risk for human health.
As you can imagine, using stain removers with such ingredients isn’t the best idea for stain removal. Care should be taken when using such products.
The other issue is commercial fabric stain removers aren’t cheap.
Do you want to spend over £5.00 on a product that doesn’t guarantee to remove all stains on kids clothes?
That’s why it makes sense to try the proven ideas outlined in this blog post first.
Note: Before you try any of the above ideas, please check they are suitable for your type of fabric. If you're unsure, test a small inconspicuous area first!
We hope you’ve found this article useful. Let us know how you get on trying these ideas.