Health & Medical

How to save your summer clothes from these five common stains including sun cream

How to save your summer clothes from these five common stains including sun cream thumbnail

We all love summer and rejoice when the warmer weather arrives, but sometimes our clothing can end up with all sorts of hard-to-remove stains. We’ve all been there, the dreaded red wine spill on a crisp white shirt or summer dress, whilst giving our skin that sun-kissed glow with tanning products that can also leave unwanted brown stains on lighter fabrics.

Applying sun cream is another. It’s, of course, an essential part of the season, but can also be a nuisance in terms of leaving greasy marks on our beloved clothes.

But don’t worry, we’re here with a helping hand to ensure these pesky stains don’t ruin your summer wardrobe with some top tips from Sam Whigam, founder of eco laundry brand Wilton London.

Sam Whigam has some top tips to help you remove summer stains

Sam Whigam has some top tips to help you remove summer stains

Sam has spent the last five years perfecting his own plant-based laundry products which have just launched nationwide in Sainsbury’s.

Through Sam’s experimenting and testing hundreds of formulas with different fabrics, he certainly knows a thing or two about laundry. He wanted to pass on a few of his handy stain removal hacks onto the OK! readers…


Don't let sun cream ruin your summer whites

Don’t let sun cream ruin your summer whites

Sun cream stains

Laundry expert Sam says: ‘It’s not summer without a few sun cream stains to haunt your whites. These guys are really tough to get rid of.’

How to fix it: Many stain removers will make it worse rather than make it vanish so I like to use a combination of salt and lemon. Flush the stain with cool water and squeeze lemon juice on top of the stains. Then lay your garment down and add a little salt to the stain. Leave it for a few hours then throw in the wash as normal with a laundry liquid.

Sangria and red wine stains

Tannins inside red wine makes it notoriously difficult to remove.

Tannins inside red wine makes it notoriously difficult to remove

Did the Sangria miss your glass and ruin your favourite top? Sam also has another handy tip, and the trick is to act quick…

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How to fix it: Don’t worry, red wine is easy if you act quick and add a little laundry liquid directly to the stain. Most red wine stains will come out if you wash them on a coolish wash. If you left the stain until you got home, you might need the help of some oxygen bleach. Mix a little laundry oxy bleach with warm water to form a paste. Pour that on the stain and leave for a few hours. Pop it in the wash at 60 (if your garment can go that warm) with laundry liquid and another scoop of oxy bleach and your favourite top will be sangria free.

We’ve also found some other handy hacks to help you tackle other common stains too…

Tanning Products

Ingredients in most self-tanning products are made of plant-based sugars, which react with oxygen and make your skin look tanned. However, the tanning lotion can stain your clothes, sheets and mattresses.

How to fix it: According to Steamery, if you notice a stain from a self-tanning product on your garment, act right away and follow these simple steps: 1. Rinse the stain with warm water. 2. Soak the stain with dishwashing liquid. 3. Work the stain from inside the garment, dab gently with a sponge. 4. Rinse with warm water. 5. Wash the whole garment according to the care label instructions.

Some summer stains can be hard to deal with which is why we've found some handy tips

Some summer stains can be hard to deal with, which is why we’ve found some handy tips

Coffee Stains

We’ve all been there, enjoying that morning coffee and a frustrating spillage happens – oops. Your first thought is that it’ll be there forever. But this doesn’t have to be the case.

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How to fix it: If there were anyone who might know a thing about coffee stains or two, it would be experts at Nespresso right? Their number one tip, like most stain mishaps, is to act quickly. Don’t let the stain dry, get to work immediately. They add: “There are a number of ways to remove the coffee stain using general household items most of us have handy. They might even be in your office kitchen or cleaning cupboard, if you’ve split coffee on your outfit at work”. Here are a few they suggest…

Baking soda, amongst other household products can help to remove coffee stains

Baking soda, amongst other household products can help to remove coffee stains

  • Cold water: Start simple – for a fresh coffee stain, try running it under cold water. Run the water through the front of the stain and also from the back. Once you’re sure the stain is gone, you can wash in machine as normal.
  • Vinegar: Mix white vinegar and water together, use a towel dipped in this solution to scrub the stain until it disappears. It’s worth remembering the clothing will smell like vinegar until you can wash it.

  • Toothpaste: Firstly, make sure it’s white toothpaste. Because it acts like an exfoliator, you can rub the stain with a little bit of toothpaste and break down the stain. Rinse and repeat if necessary.

  • Baking Soda: Use baking soda and water to form a paste. Scrub it onto the stain, continue rubbing until the stain is gone. Then rinse with cold water.

Deodorant marks

Deodorant stains are also easy to pick up, whether you wear sprays or roll ons. White residue or under arm sweat marks can cause unsightly stains especially on light colours.

How to fix it: Luckily Laundry experts Persil have a few ways you can tackle them…. but before you begin, they suggest reading the garment care label and to test your stain removal solution on an inconspicuous part of the item first.

  • Nylon stockings (yes really!): This is a great trick to use for coloured clothing. Try rubbing nylon stockings, a dry towel, or even a clean sock on the stain, then pop the item in the washing machine with a colour-safe detergent that’s designed to help clothes stay vibrant, like Persil Colour Washing Capsules. This method is ideal for removing marks left behind from a deodorant stick.
  • Water and Lemon Juice: Apply a mixture of equal parts water and lemon juice to the stain, then leave in the sun for an hour before rinsing your garment and washing it as normal in your washing machine. The natural bleaching effect of both the lemon juice and the sun is great for fading deodorant stains on light clothing.
  • White vinegar: Soak the stain in white vinegar for about an hour and brush the deodorant stain with an old, clean toothbrush. Then pop the garment in the washing machine with a biological detergent. Soaking deodorant stains in white vinegar is suitable for both white and coloured clothes.
  • Aspirin: Crush three or four aspirin tablets and make a paste using the same steps above. This method should only be used for white clothing.
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