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Worst food stains and how to treat them – guide for messy eaters! - Part 1

Worst food stains and how to treat them – guide for messy eaters! - Part 1

Admit it, no matter how careful you are sometimes food just finds its way to the tablecloth or worse – to your clothes. You are enjoying your spaghetti and a moment later you are undergoing a panic attack because some sauce just fell off on your shirt. And there's nothing worse than a red pasta sauce splash on your favourite shirt, right? Yes, food stains can be a nightmare but if you know how to treat them and act right away, you will see that actually there`s nothing to worry about. Read on and see the most common food stains and simple methods to get rid of them.

  • Peanut butter – you surely love this delicious and nutritious treat but when you have to get rid of the stain from your sleeve, or worse, from your carpet things are different. How to clean it from your clothes? Scrape as much of the peanut butter as you can and use this solution - one tablespoon white vinegar and one tablespoon of dishwashing detergent in about two cups of warm water. Sponge and blot the stain until no residue is left. When it comes to cleaning peanut butter from your carpet again the important thing is to act right away – scrape the excess with a butter knife or spatula and avoid grinding it into your carpet. Next step is to apply a small amount of nail remover on a cotton ball and apply gently on the area. Then blot it with an absorbent cloth and sponge the spot with white vinegar – try working from the outside towards the centre of the stain to avoid spreading the peanut butter. Absorb as much as you can and sponge with warm water on the stained area. If this method doesn't work for you because your carpet can`t be treated with acetone better call professional carpet cleaners as you may damage your carpet instead of getting rid of the stain.

  • Tomato-based sauces – as we already mentioned dealing with red pasta sauce on your clothes is far from exciting experience. Never use hot water on the stain because it will set it! Soak the stain in cold water mixed with 2 tablespoons of white vinegar and one tablespoon dishwashing liquid detergent. Let it sit for about 30 minutes and rub the spot gently afterwards. Rinse in cold water to remove the residues. If the stain is persistent you may have to repeat the process. This method is fine for ketchup, barbecue sauce, pizza sauce, marinara and salsa.

  • Coffee – spilling coffee in the morning rush is a common scenario. The tricky part when dealing with coffee stains is that they don't seem like a big deal at first glance but once they have set, they become really persistent. These stains are yellowish when fade but the good news is that if you act as soon as possible you can get rid of them efficiently. What should you do when you have just spilled your favourite morning brew? Rinse the fresh coffee stain thoroughly in hot water and soak the fabric in some dishwashing liquid detergent – the stain will come off if you catch it quickly enough. However, if you are dealing with old coffee stain try using borax. Mix about 2 tablespoons in one cup of water and pour the mixture over the stain – let it sit for about 10 minutes and wash the fabric as you would usually do.

  • Mustard – when dealing with this condiment remember to quickly blot it up because it makes a wet stain and tends to spread really easily. Mustard contains turmeric and this is what actually stains your fabrics. Once you have blotted the stain, scrape any residues and pretreat with a solution of lukewarm water and dishwashing liquid. Using 3% hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ball gently blot the stain – don`t forget to test it on an inconspicuous area of your fabric first. Let it sit for 15 minutes and wash in the hottest water suitable for the material. If you are dealing with an old stain, apply glycerin and let it sit for about half an hour so it loosens the stain, then proceed with the method above.

  • Baby food – baby food usually comes in a wide variety but you can learn the basic methods of getting rid of stains caused by it. Scrape as much as you can and soak in cold water – you may let it sit for a couple of hours. Again, the heat can set the stain so don`t use hot water or put the clothing in dryer after treating it. Apply liquid laundry detergent and rub the stain. If you think the material, experts in domestic cleaning recommend applying alcohol-based cleaning product or 3% hydrogen peroxide. When there are no more residues launder as normal.

  • Red wine – wine is romantic but cleaning accidental spills definitely isn`t. You should act immediately absorb with paper towel and sprinkle baking soda or salt on the spot as they will soak the excess of the wine. After that rinse with equal parts of white vinegar and dishwashing liquid after you remove the baking soda.

  • Soy sauce – having a great sushi night may be ruined by spilling soy sauce over the tablecloth! First, blot the stain dry and dab it with cotton ball with white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide. Many people say ammonia is also suitable but it should be rinsed right away. Launder the fabric as normal.

The two important things you should remember are treating the stain as soon as possible and not washing and drying it until the spot is pretreated the right way. Don’t give up on your spaghetti and tasty peanut butter – now you know what to do in case of stain emergency!


For more useful tips you can read part two - Worst food stains and how to treat them – guide for messy eaters! - Part 2

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