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The Practical Stuff: Getting Wine Stains Out

March 4th, 2010 3 Comments

And now, for a practical post that has nothing to do with the enjoyment of wine, and everything to do with making sure an accidental wine spill doesn’t ruin your evening. What do you do if you spill red wine on your clothes (or a guest’s), or on the carpet?  Despite all of the wine consumed in my home,  I have yet to acquire a single stain anywhere, even after overconsumption.   And now I’m going to share my secrets with you.

Basically, what you do depends on what you spill it on.   Here’s a rundown of each trick so you can’t go wrong.

If you spill on…..

Your Clothes

In most cases, the stain can be pre-treated. Simply add a teaspoon of dish soap to a cup of hydrogen peroxide. Dab this mixture onto the stain with a sponge. Then wash the item either in the washer in cold water, or by hand. Then air dry. And Presto! The exception is if the item of clothing is dry clean only. In that case take it straight to the cleaners.

Soak a sponge in warm water and blot the spot to dilute it. Then apply some talcum powder to the stain. Let it stand for a few minutes, then brush it off. Repeat if necessary.

The Carpet

Well, in that case, you’re out of luck. Nothing can get a red wine stain out of a carpet.

Just kidding. It’s actually almost identical to what you do with clothes. Mix one teaspoon of dish soap with one cup of hydrogen peroxide. Then use a sponge to apply this to the stain. Blot dry with a cloth or paper towels.

At least that’s what all the experts on the internet say to do. If you have come across a better method, leave it in the comments below, and you too will become an internet expert as well!

I can’t wait to experience a actual wine stain disaster just so I can thwart it without batting an eye.

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  • dallas

    This is a tip I was given by a publican. To get red wine out of carpet, flood the spill with white wine immediately. It’s not the cheapest form of stain removal, but it’s cheaper than replacing carpet and it works (I have no idea why). The red wine just seems to disappear. I’ve heard vodka works even better but I haven’t tried that myself.

  • Sophie

    Oxy-Clean actually works quite well for most food stains like wine (I’ve even gotten tea out of a wool sweater!)–as long as you soak the stain right away and don’t let it dry. If the garment is washable, I throw it in the wash after soaking the stain for 15-20 min max. I’ve found that the Oxy-Clean powder tends to work better than the spray. For carpet stains, I’ve used a carpet spray with OxyClean (Woolite-brand I think). Otherwise basic sea salt works to soak in a wine or blood stain before washing the garment. Just pour tons of it on the stain and let it sit. It will soak up a lot of the red.

  • Haakee16

    Stain Rx is the best stain remover out there. I have been using it on red wine stains since 1969. Just touch it to red wine, iodine, berries (INCLUDING POMEGRANATE), fruit punch, cranberry juice, and the stains disappear in a second. Stains such as mascara, lipstick, blood, balsamic vinegar, vanilla extract and others come out with a little massaging and rinsing. Soak your diamond, gold and platinum jewelry in it for 20 minutes to overnight, you won’t believe it!
    By the way, the University of California – Davis did a study on red wine stain removal and the #1, ready to use winner was Stain Rx (a.k.a. Erado-Sol). It killed Wine Away which is available everywhere. Go to http://www.StainRx.com to see what else it does.