Best Quick Tips for How to Get Blood Out of Clothes

Get blood out of common clothing materials quickly and effectively with these stain-fighting tips.

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Canvas

If the blood stain on the washable canvas is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Chenille

If the blood stain on the washable chenille is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Corduroy

If the blood stain on the washable corduroy is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Cotton

If the blood stain on the washable cotton is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Leather

Fill a jar halfway with lukewarm water, and add a squirt of mild dish soap. Shake to create lots of suds. With a sponge, apply only the suds, gently dabbing at the stained area. Wipe dry with a clean, soft cloth. If stain remains, try a 50-50 solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. (Test an inconspicuous area for colorfastness first.) Dab solution on stain, then dab with water, then dab with a clean, dry cloth. Follow up with a leather cleaner/conditioner, used according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Linen

If the blood stain on the washable linen is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Polyester

To remove a blood stain from polyester, rinse the stain in cold water, or soak the clothing piece in cold water and detergent. For colored clothing pieces, wash in cold water with detergent and oxygenated bleach, and for white clothing, wash in detergent and chlorine bleach, if the label says it's OK. If some of the blood stain remains, repeat the process until all the blood is removed, then dry the garment as directed.

Silk

Blot to remove as much blood as possible. Blot in a solution of 1 cup cool water and 1 teaspoon salt. Blot dry. Repeat as stain lifts, then blot in cool water. If stain persists, blot with diluted hydrogen peroxide. (Test in an inconspicuous spot first.) Dab with water, then blot dry.

Spandex/Lycra

To remove a blood stain from spandex or Lycra, rinse the stain in cold water or soak the clothing piece in cold water and detergent. For colored clothing, wash in cold water with detergent and oxygenated bleach, and for white clothing, wash in detergent and chlorine bleach, if the label says it's OK. If some of the blood stain remains, repeat the process until all the blood is removed, then dry the garment as directed.

Suede

Fill a jar halfway with lukewarm water, and add a squirt of mild, clear dish soap. Shake to create lots of suds. With a sponge, apply only the suds, gently dabbing at the stained area. Wipe dry with a clean, soft cloth. If stain remains, try a 50-50 solution of water and hydrogen peroxide. (Test an inconspicuous area for colorfastness first.) Dab solution on stain, dab with water, then dab with a clean, dry cloth. Follow up with a suede cleaner/conditioner, applied according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Velvet

If the blood stain on the washable velvet is fresh, soak the garment immediately in cold water, then machine-wash. If the blood stain has already dried, pretreat or soak the garment in warm water and an enzyme detergent. Machine-wash as directed. If the stain remains, use a bleach product safe for the fabric. Once the stain is gone, dry according to the directions on the garment's label.

Wool

Blot to remove as much blood as possible. Dab wool with cold water. Blot dry. Continue as long as stain lifts. If necessary, blot in sudsy water. Blot with clear water, then blot dry. If stain remains, dab with solution of 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water. Dab in clear water. Blot dry.

Note: Be sure to follow the instructions on the garment's label and the manufacturer's instructions on any products mentioned as you go through this process. 

Stain Removal: What Not to Do

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