how to remove bleach stains

How to Remove Bleach Stains from Clothes

Don’t freak out if a little bleach gets on your black jeans when you’re doing laundry. You can usually cure those colourless whitened splotches, no matter how hopeless they appear. All you have to do now is figure out how to get bleach out of your clothes. Bleach is a popular element in cleaning solutions that help us keep our whites brilliant and our houses germ-free. It is, however, a chemical that can leave unsightly stains on our garments. 

To reverse the discolouring effects of bleach, utilise simple home chemicals like rubbing alcohol, baking soda, and vinegar. The stain can potentially be removed by dyeing the clothing or using specific washing methods. If all else fails, the bleach stain might be hidden by repurposing the garment or fixing it with sewing techniques.

A few strategies for eliminating or disguising a bleach stain are described in this article. You’ll also learn how to use bleach. Finally, you’ll learn how to keep your garments free of bleach stains and hence all your queries on how to remove bleach stains from clothes will be solved.

What is Bleach and Why Does it Stain Fabric?

How to Remove Bleach Stains from Clothes

Because sodium hypochlorite(Bleach) is a strong oxidizer, it can oxidise chemical bonds not only in stains but also in the dyes that give your clothes their colour. Anyone who has poured chlorine bleach on their favourite pair of jeans knows how powerful bleach is as an oxidizer. Non-chlorine bleaches that use a weaker oxidising agent, such as hydrogen peroxide, can break chemical bonds in specific stains without disrupting stronger chemical bonds in garment dyes.

If you’re not careful, bleach may easily damage fabric, furniture, and even carpet. Unfortunately, it’s a popular home item that’s difficult to avoid. You might think that once bleach removes the colour from anything, the colourless stain is permanent. You might be able to reverse or remove the bleach stain before it sets if you act quickly using clear alcohol for small spots or dark fabric, a diluted solution of sodium thiosulfate for large spots on fabric, and liquid dishwasher detergent or white vinegar for fabric, upholstery, and carpet.

Effective Remedies To Remove Bleach Stains From Clothes

Learn how to remove bleach stains from clothing quickly and easily with a few basic ways and how do you get bleach out of clothes from both white and coloured fabrics.

1. Using Clear Alcohol

How to Remove Bleach Stains from Clothes

If you get bleach on your favourite shirt or pants that haven’t been washed, use the neutralising procedure. Then, for how to remove bleach stains from colored clothes with smaller bleached areas, try this workaround.

Steps To Use Clear Alcohol:

  1. Using rubbing alcohol, soak a cotton swab.
  2. Pull the colour from the surrounding areas into the white area by rubbing the cotton swab around the bleach stain.
  3. Repeat until all of the colour has been applied to the bleached region.
  4. Allow the clothes to dry naturally.
  5. You’ll note that the bleached section is still lighter than the rest of the room. If this is the case, a fabric dye can be used to fix it.
  6. To remove the bleach, rinse the fabric with cold water
  7. Using a cotton ball, soak it in a clear alcohol such as gin or vodka
  8. Continue rubbing the stain until you are satisfied that it is no longer visible.
  9. Allow the fabric to air dry before washing to eliminate any remaining alcohol.
  10. Before you wash away the clear alcohol, give the colours in the cloth a chance to settle. To avoid any extra discoloration caused by the residue of the clear alcohol, wash the cloth as soon as possible after it has dried.

2. Using Rubbing Alcohol 

rubbing alcohol for bleach stains

Rubbing alcohol also transfers colour from a “good” part of your garment to the spotted part. Plus, it’s a lot less expensive! This procedure is by far the quickest and cheapest you can try if you unintentionally poured a small amount of bleach onto your clothes. Owing to its promising profile as a stain remover, rubbing alcohol is also used to remove tea and coffee stains from clothes. Not just this, rubbing alcohol can also remove tougher stains from clothes like holi colors.

However, any type of alcohol, especially synthetics like polyester, can cause damage to the material. As a result, you should only use it to remove stains in small areas and only as needed.

Steps To Use Rubbing Alcohol:

  1. To begin, neutralise the spotted area using baking soda. Thoroughly rinse the item.
  2. Using rubbing alcohol, soak a cotton ball, Q-tip, or clean white rag.
  3. Wipe the colour into the bleached area by wiping it over and around the white spot.
  4. After you’ve filled in the place, clean the damaged area and wash your item as usual.

3. Using Diluted Sodium Thiosulfate 

How to Remove Bleach Stains from Clothes

Sodium thiosulfate can be found at your local department shop. To neutralise the impact of bleach stains on cloth, use sodium thiosulfate, often known as image fixer. It’s available at local department stores and pet stores, as well as big-box stores and online sellers. Look for goods that claim to be chlorine neutralizers. 

As an immediate treatment, this is effective. If the stain has been sitting for a time, the diluted solution may not completely remove it, but it will certainly make it less obvious. 

Steps To Use Diluted Sodium Thiosulfate:

  1. 1 tbsp (14.3 g) sodium thiosulfate, dissolved in 1 cup (240 mL) warm water 
  2. Combine the ingredients in a dish or a plastic basin that will only be used for cleaning. 
  3. Use a disposable spoon to mix this diluted solution until all of the sodium thiosulfate is dissolved. 
  4. Dip a clean white cloth into the diluted sodium thiosulfate solution. This does not require the use of a white cloth; any old cloth will suffice. 
  5. Using a damp cloth, blot the stain until the liquid is absorbed into the fabric. 
  6. Then, using the diluted sodium thiosulfate, treat it once more. 
  7. The fabric should be washed and dried as usual. Wash the fabric separately so that the garment is clean and you now know how to fix bleach stains. 

Tips for Bleaching Clothes

After a while, clothes start to look dirty and dull. Bleaching your clothes might help you keep or restore their brightness. Adding bleach directly to a washing machine cycle is usually a good idea. If you’re washing delicates, you’ll need to hand-wash them in a basin or sink with bleach. Bleach can also be used to fade or decorate garments.

  • Examine the Label: Before laundry, check the garment label; some textiles cannot be laundered with liquid household bleach (sodium hypochlorite). 
  • Test: Do a test on an inside seam with a cotton swab dipped in the bleach/water solution. If the cloth colour stays the same, you’re safe.
  • Bleach the complete load: Check the instructions on the bleach product to quantify the number to use when applying bleach to an entire load of laundry in your washing machine.

One aspect that we often tend to overlook while washing clothes in a washing machine is how much wear the machines cause to our clothes. Some washing machine configurations are rather harsh on clothes than others. Similarly, the harshness varies with brands. We’ve put together thorough guides to help you navigate through washing machine brands, their features and if they’re worth your money. Find them here:

Wrapping Up

Working with bleach can be hazardous to one’s health. It can, however, discolour and damage your clothes. When it’s your white clothes, keeping them white for an extended period of time is practically impossible. However, using the soaking method, washing machine method, or sun-bleach method to bleach your white items can make a significant impact. So, can you unbleach clothes? Yes.

The proper course of action is to use bleach with utmost caution – or, preferably yet, find bleach substitutes.

If you do have bleach stains on your clothes, we have offered you a few fantastic solutions on how to get bleach stains out of clothes. These techniques will restore the beauty of your garments!

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