Now that I have a 2 year old, I feel like my nightly routine involves pre-treating a number of stains from my daughters clothes. Markers, food, crayons, dirt and blood have all managed to settle into her clothes and I have no desire to let them ruin her wardrobe. I’ve also had my share of spills and other substances make their way onto my furniture and carpet. Even though I have a child, I don’t want my house to turn into a pigsty, and I’m sure you don’t want that either. We’ve done some research on some of the most common stains you come across as a mom and how to remove them. We hope you find this helpful in your hour of need!
1. Yellow Armpits
This one’s more for you mom, because if you’re like me, you now have half your wardrobe adorned with stained armpits from the copious amounts of sweating you do carting your kids around. It’s mostly notable on your white T-shirts and if it hasn’t happened yet, you can bet that eventually you’ll be sporting a little ring around the armpit. But there’s hope! Take 8-10 aspirin and crush them up. Then add a small amount of water to make a paste. Smear the paste onto your yellowed armpit stains and let the mixture sit overnight. Then toss the shirt in with your regular wash and yellow be gone!
2. Grass Stains
What is it about something so natural that can wreak so much havoc on your clothes? Who knows, but one thing is sure, grass stains are difficult to get out. To remove, pre-treat the stains with a stain remove for 1 to 2 hours (yes, that long. You want the stains out right?!). Then use a major stain fighter, OxyClean and make a paste with water. Cover the stains and let sit another 1-2 hours. Finally, you’ll flake off the paste into a bucket and fill with water. Put the dirty garment in and rub and remaining stains with your hand and let soak to finish off the process! It’s a little time consuming, but the grass will be gone!
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I hope you don’t mind that I didn’t post a picture of blood for this one, but it just grossed me out! Though you don’t want to think about it, you will be scrubbing blood off you and your kids clothes at least a few times in your life. As gory as it may seem, cleaning blood off fabric is actually not that hard. The first tip is to treat the fabric right away. You can do a rinse from the opposite side of the fabric (Example, the blood is on the outside of the shirt, so run water on the stain from the inside) with COLD water. If you use hot, you will set the stain. Depedning on the amount of blood, you may get it all off and then just wash as usual. If not, then you will spray a mixture of 1 part hydrogen peroxide, 1 part baking soda and 1/2 part water that you’ve put in a spray bottle. The mixture will bubble up as it removes the stain. You may need to let sit and repeat several times before throwing in the regular wash but it’s worth the work!
Since we’re on the topic of red stains, let’s address ketchup. Whether you’re at a BBQ or your child just prefers ketchup at every meal like my daughter, it somehow always manages to get on her clothing. If you catch a glob of ketchup right away, try and remove the majority of it by hand and rinse with cold water from behind (like with blood). Then take some dish soap and an old toothbrush and work the soap into the fabric. Once again, rinse from behind. Then mix 1 part baking soda and 1 part hydrogen peroxide into a paste and cover stain. Let it sit for at least 20 minutes and then wash as usual. Before throwing in the dryer, check that the stain is gone. Once you dry it, it will be there forever.
5. Any Set In Stain
Sometimes you miss a stain and it ends up going through the wash and dryer, “setting” in before you’ve even had a chance to remove it. But not all hope is lost! Mix 2 parts hydrogen peroxide, 1 part baking soda and 1 part dishwashing detergent (like Dawn) and apply to stains. Use a good brush to massage the mixture into the stains and let them sit for minimum 1 hour and then wash as usual.
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This is more of an odor than a stain, although depending on what your kids ate it could be both! The smell of vomit is not one you want to linger, so quick treatment will help remove the awful smell and hopefully stave off any future nausea (i.e. prevent you from throwing up as you clean up throw up). After you’ve cleaned up the actual mess, use a towel to blot up any remaining moisture. Then simply sprinkle the area with plain baking soda and let it sit as long as you feel necessary. Then vacuum up. This will remove the majority of the smell, but if you have any residual aroma you can spray plain white vinegar on the area. The vinegar smell doesn’t last long but will erase any lingering odor.
7. Heat “Stains” On Your Wood Furniture
Last year I stupidly ate a piece of pizza on a paper plate on my beautiful dining room table. When I got up and moved my plate, I had a white ring where the hot food had burned my table! My heart was pounding as I feared that I had ruined our table so I quickly hopped on Pinterest to find a cure. Lo and behold, there were a number of ways to attempt to remove the spot. If this has happened to you, then take baking soda and just enough water to make a paste. Then cover the stain with the paste and let it sit. Then simply wipe off the spot with a damp towel and voila! If this method doesn’t work for you, you can also lay a cotton towel over the spot and heat with an iron on the dry setting for 1 minute. Good luck!
8. Grease or Oil Stains
Sometimes you are the unlucky victim of a drip of meat grease or a glob of salad dressing that leaves a huge oily spot on your shirt. If you throw your garment directly in the wash, the stain will remain, because it need some extra attention. If you catch the stain right away, immediately apply either baking soda or cornstarch to the stain. The products will begin pulling the oils from the fabric. If you can’t treat right away, then apply dish soap to the fabric and rub it in. Let it sit and then rinse off with cold water. You can then wash as usual.