How to get rid of those pesky deodorant stains on shirts

March 25, 2011 at 7:45 pm 4 comments

Over the course of the day, as you sweat and move about, deodorant can transfer from your underarms to your clothing. As the deodorant builds up, it can leave a white, crusty deodorant stain on your clothing. If your garment is made of a delicate fabric such as wool or silk, the deodorant stain can also cause discoloration to the fabric itself.

Why does this happen? The stains develop as a result of the acidity in the antiperspirants/deodorants you wear. In addition, many people believe that if they apply a generous amount of antiperspirant, they’ll sweat less. Well, guess what? It doesn’t — so stop doing that! It’s just staining your shirts more.

Here are 7 different natural methods to get rid of those tough deodorant stains. If you’re going to try any of these options, feel free to comment and let us know which one you have or don’t have success with!

  1. Dilute a half cup of ammonia with 4 cups of water and daubing the solution on the stain repeatedly until it is lightened or removed entirely.
  2. Take two aspirins … crush them and mix with a half cup of hot water. Pour directly on the stain and allow it to sit for a couple of hours.
  3. Baking soda … add enough water to 1/4 cup of baking soda to form a runny paste. Apply directly to the stain and work it in. If the stain is particularly bad and smelly, let the baking soda paste remain on the garment for a couple of hours then brush it off. Baking soda is very good for removing odors!
  4. Fresh or concentrated lemon juice … you may squeeze fresh lemon juice directly on the stain until it is quite wet, then add a spoonful of table salt. Rub between your fingers until the stain lifts. This also helps remove dark underarm stains on t-shirts and undershirts. If it is a bright sunny day, exposing the garment to the sun and allowing it to dry will enhance the stain removing power of the lemon juice.
  5. Meat tenderizer … another one for Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Moisten the perspiration stain with warm water then sprinkle liberally with meat tenderizer. Work it is and allow it to sit for several minutes, then launder as usual.
  6. Salt … regular table or pickling salt is a miraculous ingredient in many things, including household cleaners. Use salted water to soak stained garments; mix with white vinegar for a very good stain remover. Use with lemon juice – see #4 tip above.
  7. White vinegar … mix a cup of white vinegar with 4 cups warm water. Dip stained garment in vinegar solution and scrub between your knuckles. If the stain is persistent, you may soak the entire garment in the vinegar solution for a couple of hours before running through a normal wash cycle. Check the fabric label to be sure it does not need to be dry cleaned!
    Take preventive action: Apply a thin coat of antiperspirant or deodorant to your underarm area and let it fully dry before you put on your undershirt

Entry filed under: Natural Cleaning, Smart Laundry Tips. Tags: , , , , , , .

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kathryn Casson  |  June 10, 2013 at 9:16 am

    sodi bicarb works great – thankyou !! need to soak for at least 30 min though!!

  • 2. Charley  |  February 9, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    Will bottled lemon juice work?

  • 3. chtfn  |  June 28, 2012 at 12:20 am

    Thanks for this, so much better than all other pages on the topic! Cheers!

  • 4. Wayne  |  December 31, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Great cleaning tips!


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