Wine Stain Removal
~Pooja Chakrabarty

The Basics of Wine Stain Removal

Alcohol stains such as wine are fairly difficult to remove. This is because it is difficult to spot the stain when it is still fresh as it remains colorless. By the time it begins to show it is not a new stain anymore, and wine stain removal becomes that much more difficult. However, there are ways of dealing with even old wine stains. Here are some tips.

For wine stain removal, launder the fabric in hot water (the hottest temperature that can be used for that particular fabric. Read the garment care instructions on the label). Avoid soaps, as they might react with the stain, making it more difficult to remove.

The fabric can be soaked in warm water in which an enzyme presoak product has been mixed. This is especially useful for tough stains. Older stains can be bleached away. (Before bleaching, check to see that the fabric is colorfast and bleach-safe).

For wine stain removal, launder the fabric in hot water

Rinsing thoroughly is essential as any residual sugars will show up in the form of brown stains when the fabric is heated (e.g. in the dryer, or while ironing). This happens because the sugar gets caramelized.

Wine stain removal needs immediate treatment. These stains are initially nearly colorless. However, they take on a brownish color with time. Washing might lead to the darkening of the stain as well.

To deal with fresh stains, sponge the stained area several times with warm water. For residual stains (if any), apply some glycerine on the stain and lightly rub it for about 30 minutes. Thereafter, rinse it with warm water.

For older stains (which are usually more obstinate) sponge the dry cloth with equal amounts of methylated spirit and ammonia. However make sure you do a colorfastness test first. After the treatment, rinse the garment well.

Some people suggest that for red wine stain removal, you should pour some white wine on it, blot it with a tissue, and then wash it with ammonia in cold water. For white wine, wash it with ammonia and cold water.

But the most important thing to remember is that wine stains (like other alcohol stains) must be treated immediately if you want a complete wine stain removal. Don’t go and use the harshest methods immediately. Try the gentler methods first. And always… always… always rinse the garment thoroughly.

[The picture used in this article has been taken from the photo library of stock.xchng.]