What are your best stain removal tips for kids clothes please?

(34 Posts)
thestylethatdecadesforgot Thu 14-Feb-13 20:46:45

I have a constant stream of tomato-based, orange, yoghurt, anything berry coloured, crayon, felt pen and biro stains coming at me on DD 2.7's clothes and most of them do not respond to anything I throw at them.

I use a 40 degree wash and sometimes 50 or 60 on anything I dare to. I've tried Vanish spray and powder, a generic vanish type powder, soda crystals, dr Beckmann stain removers (actually they are pretty good but some things even elude them), bio tex, you name it.

I read recently that you should rinse cycle first so as to stop setting stains in with the hot water. I've tried this but it doesn't seem to help.

Now DD2 is weaning she is providing all manner of food stains too and lots of her lovely new grows are covered with stuff I can't get out already too.

I am washing pretty much every day so it's not like stuff is getting set into clothes because its waiting a week to be washed.

Please share your tips with me. Everyone else seems to have cleanly clothed toddlers and babies and I don't! And sadly I'm pretty obcessed with cleaning!

OP’s posts: |
MERLYPUSS Thu 14-Feb-13 21:03:44

Milk gets pen out. But not apparently the bastard ones they use at our school that insist on yellow sweat shirts!!

TreadOnTheCracks Thu 14-Feb-13 21:11:12

I go for kill or cure sometimes with loads of vanish and a 95c wash...

treesntrees Thu 14-Feb-13 21:28:32

I think the above was why our great grandparents wore smocks and pinafores while they were small. Even though such stains didn't exist apart from the berry and ink stains their clothes needed protecting.
I tend to equate spotless clothes with children who do not get the freedom to experiment.

mailwoman Thu 14-Feb-13 21:32:01

On whites only - Milton sterilizing fluid diluted about 50/50 (sometimes neat if feeling brave! But rinsed well before normal wash) used sparingly, directly on the stain, let it sit for a few minutes before being put into the wash as normal. This doesnt happen often but on some fabrics if Milton is too strong the white fabric can take on a yellowish tinge, I am usually trying to get stains out of clothes that are going in the bin if the stain stays, so I'm not too concerned about the occasional yellow casualty

Normal clothes washing liquid scrubbed directly onto stains with an old toothbrush on coloured clothes left for half hour or so then chucked in wash.

HTH smile I hate stains on the kids clothes!

nancy75 Thu 14-Feb-13 21:37:17

Fairy washing up liquid ( the stuff made to wash dishes not clothes) put a bit on the stain, rub it in a bit and then bung in the machine with normal washing powder. The only thing it doesn't get out is chocolate ice cream - nothing gets rid of that.

HoratiaWinwood Thu 14-Feb-13 21:51:32

Swarfega is incredible. I did a load of cricket whites once, some of which were absolutely plastered with grass and blood stains. Bit of Swarfega, normal wash cycle, and you couldn't tell which garments had had stains, let alone whereabouts.

Failing that, sunshine. Get them on the line. Our clothes are always less stained in spring/summer when they get line-dried.

Willdoitinaminute Thu 14-Feb-13 21:54:56

I know it sound odd but discovered that Johnsons baby bath was a brilliant stain remover. My DS had sens skin as baby so couldn't use it in his bath. It was the only thing to hand one day after an explosive nappy covered his vest in the bright yellow stuff so I applied it liberally. Then put through normal wash. The vest came out without a trace of stain and I used it successfully for many stains until I ran out of all the free samples.

TreadOnTheCracks Thu 14-Feb-13 22:02:25

I have ordered swafega!

dikkertjedap Fri 15-Feb-13 00:45:05

60 degrees long program with bio powder (good brand) and generous scoop of oxy vanish, if difficult stains then pre treat stains with stain remover before washing.

Bit difficult at the moment, but if you hang it outside to dry in sunshine then the sun will also help get rid of stains.

Never give up, keep repeating the above, may take a few times, but almost all stains will ultimately be removed.

HoratiaWinwood Fri 15-Feb-13 11:06:25

That's great, Tread. It stinks, though, so once you've done a load with the Swarfega smeared on the stains, you might like to rewash on a quick cycle to reduce the chemical smell.

thestylethatdecadesforgot Fri 15-Feb-13 14:17:11

Great ideas everyone, thanks very much. Keep 'em coming! Got some clothes to test them on already. grin

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maybunny Fri 15-Feb-13 20:37:07

I really rate the Ariel stain remover spray - gets most stuff out, but you do have to try and act straight away for tough stains.

Arithmeticulous Fri 15-Feb-13 20:40:27

Sunlight. For tomato (and poo) - best in direct sunlight but just hanging something up to dry in a window can do wonders.

Now if anyone has anything that gets phonic whiteboard pen out of £10 a turn logo'd white poloshirts ....

Piemother Fri 15-Feb-13 23:40:00

I use the vanish tablet soap thing but you need to really work it in to the stain and see most of the stain lift before it goes in the machine. Old toothbrush good for scrubbing

For whites I only like ecover ku dry bleach and often scrub stains with that before the wash.

All the stained stuff in my house goes in a bucket with water and disinfectant and washing liquid for a day it do it until I out a

steppemum Sat 16-Feb-13 00:05:08

when weaning i got a paining apron. It has long sleeves and does up at the back. Mine was plastic lined cotton. It was a real help, especially if we were eating spag bol or similar.

I find that once a stain has dried it stains more, so I whisked things off and rinsed them under the tap if they were bad.
Vanish spray is pretty good as a pre wash treatment.

I also find that many stains come out in 2nd or 3rd wash, so I try no to be too precious, and let them re wear them on a day when it doesn't matter.

The best thing for anything food/greasy is either neat washing up liquid or neat shampoo, it gets rid of the grease. (doesn't get rid of the colour stain though)

whiteboard pens - none of the washing treatments get them out, but there is something really simple that does - is it hairspray? Nail Varnish remover? Google it and it comes up.

thestylethatdecadesforgot Sat 16-Feb-13 20:02:34

Hmm that's really interesting. I have also just read that olive oil sop is good and I have a bar that I was sent when I bought a second hand wool nappy cover. So I will try that too and report back. Thanks everyone for I put. The swarfega idea is new to me, I love the smell of that stuff, it has memories of 'helping' my dad fixing the car when I was little!

OP’s posts: |
MERLYPUSS Sun 17-Feb-13 07:47:59

Nothing gets white board marker out.
I have tried....... milk, vanish soak, neat washing liquid, dishwasher block, ariel spray, washing up liquid, green fairy and vanish bar soap, mild bleach, hairspray and nail varnish remover and everything else I could throw at it. The only thing that had any impact was to catch it as soon as possible and scrub it with toothpaste and leave it to got hard.

RoganJosh Sun 17-Feb-13 08:14:33

I squirt with vanish, wash, and if it hasn't come out it gets another squirt and then hung in the window. Seems to work on everything except marker pens!

magimedi Sun 17-Feb-13 16:56:54

Meths is good for biro & grass stains.

For fruit juice on cotton (esp blackcurrant) :

Take the garment & secure it tightly over a bowl so it is fairly taut. (Can use rubber band).

Put in sink.

Pour boiling water on to stain from as high AS IS SAFE

BE VERY CAREFUL not to burn yourself.

This is also my last resort method for stains, but would not use it on precious silk or wool.

thestylethatdecadesforgot Mon 18-Feb-13 14:43:07

I've only ever used old toothbrushes for cleaning, stain scrubbing is an excellent idea!

I have to say I've tried most of steppemum's things and I've also tried the soaking straight away thing. It doesn't seem to work for me.

I find washing so demoralising!

OP’s posts: |
Mamuss Wed 06-Mar-13 11:26:21

Lidl pre wash spray is amazing...

Startail Wed 06-Mar-13 11:49:51

Alcohol or swarfega will shift felt pen and biro.
Neat washing up liquid will shift most greasy food and chocolate of newish clothes.

Sunlight is magic on tomato, just ensure it's wet and rewet if necessary.

Nothing shifts certain choc ice cream or chocolate moose stains.

And nothing short of a nuclear bomb will get rid of white board pen or acrylic paint.

Piemother Wed 06-Mar-13 19:03:26

Right mners....so what's the verdict on banana? I've nnever managed to remove that hmm

thestylethatdecadesforgot Fri 08-Mar-13 15:30:45

Piemother, me neither. I've just had to bin a grow that's only a few weeks old because of banana. Grrr! I tried all sorts.

On a more positive note, DD1 has discovered red felt tips recently, (not the positive thing!) and I bought a solid stick from a brand called Bunchafarmers, you just rub on and wash. It has got the red felt til out first time every time. And tomato too! Wow! Must try that on banana.

OP’s posts: |

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