How to remove sweat stains from clothes

how to remove sweat stains from clothes

Sweating is a normal part of life and getting a sweat stain on your clothes happens to all of us sometimes. Luckily, with the help of just a few natural and readily available household ingredients, you can remove those ugly yellow sweat stains from your clothes.

Sweat stain-fighting ingredients

You’ll be able to tackle your sweat stained clothing using some of these readily available ingredients you probably already have in your house.

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Baking soda
  • Aspirin
  • Dish soap

A hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and salt paste

This method uses four classic stain removers to get rid of yellow sweat stains. Be aware that before you use hydrogen peroxide, you should test it on a small area of the fabric to ensure it won’t bleach any of your clothes. This method works best on light-colored clothing.

The combination of these ingredients work together to get rid of your stains. White vinegar is a popular stain remover and the salt works with the baking powder to lift the sweat stains from the fabric. The Hydrogen peroxide brightens the yellow stains.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups of white vinegar
  • 1 cup of baking soda
  • 1/2 cup of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide/ water
  • Half a bucket of warm water

Follow these steps:

  1. Fill your bucket halfway with warm water, then add the vinegar.
  2. Put on your stained clothing in the bucket and let it soak for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Create a paste by mixing the baking soda, hydrogen peroxide and salt.
  4. Remove your soaked shirts from the vinegar-water solution and gently squeeze out the excess solution.
  5. Lay your shirt/ clothing on a clean flat surface.
  6. Coat the stains with the paste. Let the paste sit for 20 minutes.
  7. Finally, put the clothes in the washing machine with the other load and wash as you normally would.
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A surprising sweat stain remover: Aspirin

If you have expired aspirin in your medicine cabinet, don’t throw it away. It will come in handy for cleaning. Aspirin can be dissolved and used to remove various stains, including blood and sweat. It’s very effective at removing stubborn sweat stains, especially on white clothing.

Follow these steps:

  1. Crush two aspirin tablets (this measurement is estimated for one shirt, so you’ll need more if you’re removing stains from more pieces of clothing)
  2. Mix it with a cup of hot water.
  3. Pour the solution in a bowl and place the stained part of the shirt in
  4. Let it soak for three hours.
  5. Take the shirt out of the mixture and wash as usual.

A distilled white vinegar solution

White vinegar on fabric not only removes stains from sweat perspiration, but also bad odors and stains caused by the chemical compounds found in deodorant.

This process works if you have an open-top washing machine. Otherwise you can use a large bucket. Grab your distilled white vinegar and follow this procedure:

  1. Fill the washing machine with cold water.
  2. Add a cup of distilled white vinegar.
  3. Place the stained shirts or clothes in the solution and allow to soak for 30 minutes or more.
  4. Drain the solution and wash the clothes as you normally would in the washer.
  5. If the process is unsuccessful and there is still build-up of stiff sweat, mix the vinegar and water again and vigorously handwash the stain in the solution.

Lemon juice and powder detergent

Lemon juice is one of the most widely preferred natural ingredients for cleaning. Lemon has antibacterial and whitening qualities that will reduce the yellow stains and odors from sweat stains.

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What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • Powder detergent
  • 2 tablespoons of salt

Follow these steps:

  1. Squeeze the lemon on the stain enough to saturate the area and let it soak for a few hours.
  2. Gently hand wash the stained spot using a little powder detergent or scrub using a soft-bristled brush.
  3. Rinse with clean cold water and throw in the washing machine to wash as you would normally.

Dish soap and baking soda paste

A simple paste made with baking soda and dish soap can also eliminate sweat stains. It will not only remove the stains, but also remove bad odors and soften your clothing.

You’ll need 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid 2 tablespoons of baking powder.

Follow these steps:

  1. Mix the two ingredients to form a paste.
  2. Rub it anywhere you have sweat or deodorant stains on your clothes.
  3. Leave the paste to sit on the stain for a few hours.
  4. Rinse and wash in the washing machine as normal.

A salt and rubbing alcohol approach

The simple combination of salt and rubbing alcohol work together to remove the oils and brighten the yellow stains on the fabric, eliminating sweat stains and odors completely.

Follow this process:

  1. Dilute 2 tablespoons of salt in half a cup of rubbing alcohol.
  2. Rub this onto the stain.
  3. Using a toothbrush, gently scrub in circular motions.
  4. Repeat the process until the stain is completely cleared.

Your success with any of the stain-removal processes we’ve listed will, of course, vary, depending on the fabric and severity of the stain. If one method doesn’t work, try one of the other approaches for best results.

Frequently asked questions about sweat stains

What causes sweat to stain?

Yellow sweat stains are often caused by the very thing trying to prevent the sweat from happening. The aluminum present in deodorants used to prevent sweat causes a chemical reaction with the body’s oils and minerals, leaving behind a yellow stain.

Is it possible to remove old sweat stains that have been there for a long time?

Yes, no matter how old the stain is, sweat stains can be removed and your shirt will look like you have just bought it again.

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One of the more effective approaches on old stains is first soaking your stained clothing in a distilled white vinegar solution and then covering it with a paste made from hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and salt. Check above for the complete details.

If you’re not dealing with a yellow sweat stain, but rather a white deodorant stain, read this article to learn how to remove deodorant stains from clothes.

Can Hydrogen peroxide be used to remove sweat stains on colored clothes?

Hydrogen peroxide is one of the most recommended ingredients for removing sweat stain and it can also be used for dark-colored clothes if it is diluted enough.

Sweat stains are one of the toughest stains to remove, which is why hydrogen peroxide is highly recommended for dealing with them. Just a few drops shouldn’t bleach your colored clothes, but make sure to do a spot test first, because there is a risk it could.

Does bleach remove sweat stains from white clothes?

Unfortunately, bleach won’t remove sweat stains. In fact, bleaching clothes with sweat satins actually makes the yellow stains more pronounced. So avoid trying to use harsh bleach and stick to more natural methods like lemon juice, salt or distilled vinegar. 

Many of the remedies listed above are all-natural and eco-friendly, and they work perfectly to produce the desired outcome.

Looking like new

We understand that sweating is a natural thing. It is how the body cools itself, but you don’t have to live with yellow stains under the arms of your favorite shirts ever again, or even waste your money on expensive chemical products. Following our simple and effective stain removing processes will have your clothes looking fresh and as good as new. If sweat manages to stain more than just your clothes, check out these articles to learn how to remove sweat stains from hats, how to get rid of sweat stains from sheets, or how to clean collar stains.

how to remove sweat stains from clothes

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