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How To Get A Coffee Stain Out Of Clothes

How To Get Coffee Stains Out Of Clothes

by | Mar 10, 2023 | Cleaning Tips

No one is immune to the occasional coffee spill.

Whether you’re fumbling with a takeaway cup at the coffee shop window or getting jolted awake by an overly enthusiastic puppy, coffee stains happen.

And while that first sip of joe might give you a much-needed caffeine jolt, dealing with the aftermath of a coffee stain is decidedly less pleasant.

The good news is that coffee stains don’t have to be permanent. You can get even the toughest coffee stains out of your clothes with a little know-how and the right laundry supplies.

 

3 Simple Methods for Removing Coffee Stains on Clothing

It’s important to treat the coffee stain as soon as possible, as older and set-in stains may be more difficult to remove.

Also, always check the care label of your clothing for particular washing and drying instructions.

 

Option 1: Dish soap and warm water

liquid detergent

For this cleaning method, you’ll need the following materials:

  • Laundry detergent (liquid laundry detergent works best!)
  • Liquid dishwashing detergent (or regular dish soap)
  • Clean water
  • Cleaning cloths
  • Paper towels
  • Wash basin

 

Here’s the step-by-step process on cleaning coffee stains with dish soap and warm water:

  1. Gently blot the coffee stain with a clean cloth or paper towel to remove as much excess coffee as possible.
  2. Mix a few drops of dish soap with warm water in a basin.
  3. Dip a clean cloth into the mixture and gently dab it onto the coffee stain, working from the outside in.
  4. Rinse the wet cloth in clean water and repeat until the coffee stain is no longer visible.
  5. Rinse the clothing thoroughly with water and let it air dry.

 

Option 2: Baking soda and white vinegar

Required cleaning supplies: 

  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Clean water
  • Cleaning cloths
  • Paper towels
  • Wash basin

 

How to remove coffee stains with baking soda and white vinegar:

  1. Make a paste by mixing equal parts baking soda and water.
  2. Apply the paste to the stain and let it sit for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Mix equal parts vinegar and water in a bowl.
  4. Dip a clean cloth into the mixture and dab it onto the stain, working from the outside in.
  5. Rinse the cloth in clean water and repeat until the stain is no longer visible.
  6. Rinse the clothing thoroughly with water and let it air dry.

 

Option 3: Salt and cold water

salt and cold water

You won’t need any special cleaning products for this method — just table salt and clean, cold water will do.

How to remove coffee stains from clothes with salt and cold water:

  1. Immediately sprinkle salt over the stain to absorb as much coffee as possible.
  2. Dampen the clothing with cold water and gently rub the salt into the stain.
  3. Rinse the clothing thoroughly with cold water and repeat until the stain is no longer visible.
  4. Machine wash or hand wash the clothing in cold water and air dry.

 

How to Clean Fresh Coffee Stains

Cleaning fresh coffee stains on clothing can be relatively simple if you act quickly.

Here are some steps to follow:

 

Blot the stain

Use a clean cloth or paper towel to gently blot the excess coffee immediately.

Do not rub the stain, as this will only make it spread and set deeper into the fabric.

 

Apply a cleaning solution

There are a variety of cleaning solutions that can be effective for removing coffee stains, including:

  • White vinegar: Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water, and apply the solution to the stain. Let it sit for a few minutes before washing the clothing as usual.
  • Baking soda: Mix baking soda with enough water to form a paste, and apply the paste to the stain. Let it sit for a few minutes before washing the clothing as usual.
  • Liquid dish soap: Apply a small amount of dishwashing detergent directly to the stain and gently rub it in with a damp cloth. Rinse the clothing with water and wash it as usual.

 

Wash the clothing

woman putting white color clothes into washing machine

After applying the cleaning solution, wash the clothing in the washing machine as soon as possible.

Use the hottest water setting recommended by the care label of the garment and a detergent that contains enzymes to break down the stain.

 

Check the stained area

Check if any coffee stain remains before drying the clothing.

Repeat the cleaning process or try another method if the stain is still visible.

 

How to Clean Dried Coffee Stains

Cleaning dried coffee stains from clothing or fabric can be more challenging than removing fresh stains, but there are a few methods that can be effective:

 

Pre-treating with a stain remover

  1. Apply a pre-treatment stain remover to the stained area, following the instructions on the product.
  2. Let the stain remover sit on the stain for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Wash the clothing or fabric in the washing machine on the hottest water setting recommended by the care label, using a detergent that contains enzymes.
  4. Check if the stain is gone before drying. If the stain is still visible, repeat the process or try the following cleaning method.

 

Vinegar and baking soda

Baking soda and white vinegar

  1. Make a paste by mixing equal parts baking soda and water.
  2. Apply the paste to the dried coffee stain and let it sit for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Mix equal parts vinegar and water in a bowl.
  4. Dip a clean cloth into the mixture and dab it onto the stain, working from the outside in.
  5. Rinse the cloth in clean water and repeat until the stain is no longer visible.
  6. Wash the clothing or fabric in the washing machine on the hottest water setting recommended by the care label, using a detergent that contains enzymes.
  7. Check the stained area before drying. Repeat the cleaning process or try another method if the coffee spill is still visible.

 

Bleach (hydrogen peroxide)

  1. Mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water in a bowl.
  2. Soak the stained area in the mixture for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Rinse the clothing or fabric in cold water.
  4. Wash the clothing or fabric in the washing machine on the hottest water setting recommended by the care label, using a detergent that contains enzymes.
  5. Check the stain before drying. If the coffee stain is still visible, repeat the process or try another method.

 

How to Remove Coffee Stains From Specific Fabrics

coffee stain on a white shirt

If you’re looking for a more detailed guide for removing coffee stains from particular fabrics, here it is.

We’ll walk you through cleaning synthetic and cotton fabrics.

 

How to remove coffee stains from cotton, cotton-blend clothing and linen fabrics

  1. Blot up as much coffee as possible with a clean, dry cloth or paper towel.
  2. Mix a solution of one part white vinegar and two parts cold water. Dampen a clean, white cloth with the solution and gently dab the stain. Be sure to test the solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric first to make sure it doesn’t cause any damage.
  3. If the vinegar solution doesn’t remove the stain, apply a small amount of liquid laundry detergent directly to the stain and rub it in gently with your fingers or a soft-bristled brush. Let the detergent sit on the stain for about 10-15 minutes.
  4. Wash the item in cold water with a laundry detergent that contains enzymes, which can help break down the coffee stain. Avoid using hot water or bleach, as these can set the stain.
  5. Check the stain before drying. If the stain is still visible, repeat the steps above.
  6. If the stain persists, consider using a commercial stain remover specifically designed for coffee stains, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

 

How to get coffee stains out of jeans

jeans laid on bed in the morning light with white shirt

  1. Blot up as much of the coffee as possible with a clean, dry cloth or paper towel.
  2. Turn the jeans inside out and run cold water through the back of the stain to flush out as much of the coffee as possible.
  3. Apply a small amount of liquid laundry detergent directly to the stain and rub it in gently with your fingers or a soft-bristled brush. Be sure to use an enzymatic detergent to help break down the coffee stain.
  4. Let the detergent sit on the stains for about 10-15 minutes, then rinse with cold water.
  5. If the stain persists, mix a solution of equal parts white vinegar and cold water and apply it to the stain.
  6. Let it sit for about 5-10 minutes, then rinse with cold water.
  7. If the stain still hasn’t come out, try applying a pre-treatment stain remover or using a laundry stain remover spray according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  8. Wash the jeans in cold water with a laundry detergent that contains enzymes. Avoid using hot water or bleach, as this can set the stain.

 

Removing coffee stains from silk and satin

  1. Blot up as much of the coffee stain as possible with a clean, dry cloth or paper towel. Be gentle and avoid rubbing, as this can spread the stain.
  2. Mix a solution of one part white vinegar and one part water. Dampen a clean, white cloth with the solution and gently dab the stain. Be sure to test the solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric first to make sure it doesn’t cause any damage.
  3. If the vinegar solution doesn’t remove the stain, try mixing a solution of one tablespoon of liquid dish soap and one tablespoon of white vinegar in two cups of warm water.
  4. Dampen a clean, white cloth with the solution and gently dab the stain.
  5. Rinse the area with clean water and blot dry with a clean, dry cloth. Do not rub the fabric, as this can damage it.
  6. If the stain persists, consider taking the item to a professional dry cleaner specialising in silk and satin fabrics.

 

How to Treat Coffee Stains with an Enzyme Presoak

Enzymes are proteins that can break down the organic matter in coffee stains, making them easier to remove.

So, using enzyme presoaks can be an excellent option for treating coffee stains, but it’s important to follow the instructions on the product carefully and choose a product that is suitable for your fabric and stain.

You’ll need additional cleaning supplies for this method: oxygen bleach laundry detergent, and a bucket or wash basin.

 

Choose an enzyme presoak product

Many enzyme presoak products are available on the market, such as Sard Power or Napisan.

Choose a product that is suitable for the type of fabric you are dealing with.

 

Mix the solution

Follow the instructions on the enzyme presoak product to mix the solution.

Typically, you’ll need to dissolve the powder in water in a bucket or sink.

 

Soak the clothing

clothes soaking in a basin full of water and detergent

Submerge the clothing in the enzyme presoak solution and let it soak for at least 30 minutes or longer if the stain is particularly stubborn.

 

Wash the clothing

After the clothing has soaked, wash it in the washing machine using the hottest water setting recommended by the care label, along with a detergent that contains enzymes.

 

Check the remaining stain

Before drying the clothing, check the stain to see if it has been removed.

If the stain is still visible, repeat the process or try another method.

 

FAQs about Coffee Stain Removal

 

Are coffee stains permanent?

coffee stains on clothes

Coffee stains can be stubborn, but they are not always permanent.

The key to successfully removing a coffee stain is to treat it immediately before it can set into the fabric.

The longer a coffee stain sits, the more difficult it can be to remove.

 

What is the best stain remover for coffee on clothes?

It depends on what you want to use and what you have at home. There are many effective stain removers that can be used to remove coffee stains from clothes, and the best one will depend on the type of fabric and the severity of the stain.

If you’re looking for a quick fix: white vinegar and cold water work well. Alternatively, a baking soda paste or liquid dishwashing detergent can be applied to the stained fabric.

However, if you have more time and are willing to change clothes or buy more supplies, commercial stain removers are excellent, as are enzymatic laundry detergent or oxygen bleach.

 

Does toothpaste remove coffee stains from clothes?

Not really. While toothpaste may help remove some surface-level staining, it isn’t effective for removing more stubborn or deeply set coffee stains. 

Some types of toothpaste may contain additives such as abrasives or whitening agents that can damage certain fabrics, especially delicate or synthetic fabrics.

 

Sip, Spill, Remove, Repeat — It’s Worth It for Good Coffee

Spills happen, but even professional cleaners agree that it’s worth it to enjoy a good cup of coffee.

Whether you prefer household remedies or commercial products, treating the stain as soon as possible is key to successful stain removal.

So, the next time you have your regular cleaner over, ask them to help you out with stubborn coffee stains when they’re doing a load of laundry.

About Author

Sophie Franklin

Sophie is the subject matter expert within Maid2Match. Most importantly though she is our biggest fan girl and generous in sharing what she knows.

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About Author

Sophie Franklin

Sophie is the subject matter expert within Maid2Match. Most importantly though she is our biggest fan girl and generous in sharing what she knows.

Share