iStock/monkeybusinessimagesWe all do our best to keep our wardrobes in mint condition, but let’s face it, sometimes life gets in the way. Accidental spills, forgetting to hand-wash delicates, and fabric snags are just a few of the many ways our favorite pieces can get ruined. Among the common and unavoidable way we damage our clothing on a daily basis: deodorant. Fortunately, there are a few insider laundering tricks that can help you keep your clothes free of deodorant stains. With these handy techniques for how to remove deodorant stains at your disposal, you’ll never have to throw away a prized black shirt again.
“The key is not to panic,” says Onkar Bali of Bally’s Cleaners in Palm Desert, California. “Do not go overboard by scrubbing the stain with a soaking, wet towel, which will only make the color run,” he says. “Instead, lightly moisturize the area by steaming it. This will loosen both the fabric and the deodorant, making it easier to then remove.”
For those who don’t own a steamer, remember that many irons have streaming capabilities. Alternatively, you can hang the object in your bathroom while you take a hot shower.
Once the stain has been steamed, there are a few ways to go about manually removing it. First, you need to make sure you scrub it with the right material. Believe it or not, a pair of balled pantyhose is incredibly effective at rubbing out deodorant stains. If you don’t have pantyhose, you can also opt for a new dryer sheet. Finally, if you’re really struggling to find any of these objects, there’s another household item that works wonders: hanger covers. The stretchy, foam rubber strip that you find on dry cleaner hangers is a perfectly suitable alternative. Or if you wear a lot of black and a lot of deodorant, spring for a Miss Oops Deodorant Removing Sponge. It instantly removes deodorant and other powder-based stains.
Once you’ve found the right dry, textured material to work with, it’s time to get scrubbing. Gently rub your tool of choice over the stain in circular motions. The fresher the stain, the faster it will lift, and the older the stain, the longer and harder you’ll need to work at it. Either way, you’ll slowly notice the white stain fading. Before you know it, your favorite shirt will be stain-free and as good as new. And now that you know how easy it is to get rid of deodorant stains, you can continue to wear it without worry. Read on to find out how to fix other wardrobe malfunctions on the go, and learn the best tricks to remove blood stains.