Cleaning Tips

Oil Based and Water Based Paints

• Dab stain before it dries with white spirit, once removed wash in hot water with detergent.

• If dried use equal part ammonia and turpentine, saturate the spot for several minutes then wash in warm soapy water.

Ball point pen

• Dab ink stain with hydrogen peroxide solution (1 part peroxide: 6 parts water), then machine wash. (Do not try on delicate or nylons.)

• Use shaving foam (not gel) or hairspray on stain and then machine wash.


• Scrape off what you can, then dab with methylated spirits. Rinse then wash as normal.

Felt Tip Pen

• Blot with a kitchen towel then wash as normal.

• Rub milk on the stain, then wash at 40C.

Grease, Fats, and Oils

• Use a pre-wash stain remover or rub liquid laundry detergent on stain, wash in as hot water as the fabric can take. Repeat as necessary.


• From washable fabrics soak in vinegar solution, then wash using biological laundry detergent and in wash stain remover.

• Non washable fabrics – Dry clean. Or if brave try sponging area with light vinegar water solution. (For wool use lemon juice instead.)

Coffee or Tea

• Mix together an egg and warm water, generously sponge on fabric, scrub (if fabric allows). Wash as normal.

• Stubborn stains may be removed by soaking in 1:2 clear vinegar and water solution.

Red Wine

• Blot with paper towel as much as possible. Soak in sparkling or soda water, blot again. Repeat as necessary. Then sponge with soapy water and blot dry again.

• Pour white wine on the stain immediately and then blot (not rub) with paper towel. Then sponge it with warm water.

• If stain has set – Wet stained area with dishwashing liquid and hydrogen peroxide, then start blotting it dry. Mixture can also be added to washing machine, wash as normal.


• Wash in as hot water as fabric can take using biological detergent.

• Older stains can be soaked in detergent and warm water.

Dark Juice

• Make a paste of baking soda and club soda spread over stain and let it sit. Wash out by blotting with wet paper towel. Then wash as normal.


• Wash in cold water immediately.

• If still persists soak in 1 quart warm water, 1/2 teaspoon dishwashing liquid or liquid laundry detergent and 1 tablespoon ammonia. Blot with absorbent pad. Rinse once stain is removed, then wash normally.


• Scrape off as much as you can with a blunt knife. Rub fabric against fabric with liquid dish soap. Wash as usual.

• Use petroleum jelly on the stain before fabric goes in the wash.

Nail Polish

• Lay fabric face down on a cloth and dab the stain from the other side with nail polish remover. If stain persists try dry cleaning.


• Scrape carefully to remove what you can. Hold a cloth or paper towel over the stain while you apply eucalyptus oil or heavy duty hand cleanser to the other side. Rinse well and wash.


• Scrape as much as you can with a blunt knife. Then soak in washing powder and water solution. Wash as normal using as hot a wash as the fabric can take.

Curry and Mustard

• Apply dish detergent immediately, then wash as normal.

• Stubborn stains can be treated with hydrogen peroxide solution (test on inconspicuous area first.)

• Mix equal parts vinegar and water pour on stain and try scraping off the stain, or blotting the stain with paper towel or cloth.

Scorch marks

• Try using an in- wash stain remover.

Candle wax

• Harden the wax with an ice cube. Scrape of as much was as you can with a blunt knife then cover what is left with paper towel or old cloth and iron over top of garment with a warm iron. Wash fabric in as hot a wash as fabric can handle.

Grass Stains

• On white clothing, rub molasses on stain and wash in as hot a setting as fabric can take.

• Use proprietary stain remover, wash in as hot a setting as fabric can take using biological washing detergent.


• Pre-soak than wash as usual using biological laundry detergent.

Hair – dye

• Soak in solution of washing powder and cold water, then wash as normal using biological detergent..

• Liberally spray hairspray on the fabric immediately, then wash as soon as possible.


• Don’t rub! Use sticky tape and get off as much as you can.


• Apply a paste of baking soda and lemon juice to stain, leave to penetrate for a couple hours, then wash as usual. (Test inconspicuous area first.)


• Shake out solids in toilet, then rinse item in cold water. Rub liquid laundry detergent into stain, then wash as normal.

• Use soda water on stain immediately. Dab area with paper towel, do not rub!