You’re having lunch and then it happens. A big drop of mustard falls out of your club sandwich and into your shirt.
Quickly you grab a paper towel and try to clean up the yellow splotch. That took away some of the stain, but there is still some remaining. How to get rid of that mustard stain?
There are several techniques you can try that will remove that mustard stain from your clothes. Read on to find what to use and what to avoid when dealing with the problem.
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Can I use ammonia to remove mustard stains from clothing?
It can be tempting to reach for the ammonia to tackle that mustard mark on your clothing. After all, ammonia can break down grease and remove stains.
Unfortunately, when you use ammonia (whether straight or as a base in your laundry product), it reacts with the turmeric in mustard. The result is the stain will end up becoming permanent. The opposite of what you are trying to achieve!
6 ways to remove mustard stains from your clothing
When dealing with any stain it’s best to act fast. The longer you leave a stain the more chance it has to soak into the fabric or dry out. That makes it harder (but not impossible) to remove the stain.
No matter which of the following methods you choose from below, the first step is: Use a paper towel to blot at the stain. Remove as much of the mustard as possible.
Avoid rubbing the soiled area as this will push the stain deeper into the fibers.
Once you have cleaned up as much of the mustard from your clothing as you can, it’s time to move on to the next steps. Follow any of the methods below to get that yellow mark out.
Removing mustard stains with vinegar
Vinegar is a popular choice when it comes to removing marks and stains no matter the surface or fabric. So why not use it to get rid of that mustard splatter?
- Fill a spray bottle with two parts of water and one part of vinegar. Screw on the head of the bottle and give the contents a good shake. This allows the vinegar and water to mix.
- Squirt your vinegar solution on the stained area of your clothing. Leave it to soak in for 10 minutes.
- Dab the area with a moist cloth.
- Place your soiled clothing into to washing machine on a hot wash. Read your wash care label on the garment to see how hot the water can be.
Getting rid of mustard stains using baking soda
When you mix baking soda with vinegar the result is a cleaning power to be reckoned with. You can use this to free your clothing from mustard stains.
- Place a tablespoon of baking soda into a small bowl. Add your vinegar and mix until you have a paste.
- Use a knife (or your fingers) to apply the paste to the stain.
- Leave the paste for 15 minutes to break down the stain’s bonds.
- Using a damp cloth, wipe away the baking soda paste.
- Wash your clothes in the hottest wash allowed according to the care label.
Using laundry detergent to remove mustard stains
For this method, you want to use a high-quality laundry detergent such as Tide, Seventh Generation, or Persil.
- Turn your clothing inside out and wash it under some cold water.
- Apply a pre-stain treatment to the mustard stain.
- Using a toothbrush (or something similar) gently work the pre-stain liquid into the clothing. Let everything rest for several minutes.
- Wash your garment under cold water again.
- Place your clothing into the washing machine. Add in your laundry detergent and wash on the hottest setting possible (according to the care label).
If the stain is still visible, repeat this process.
How to remove mustard stains with rubbing alcohol
As a degreasing agent, rubbing alcohol can take care of the more stubborn stains. Yes, that includes mustard stains, too. If you have some rubbing alcohol laying around and a mustard splotch in your clothing, follow the steps below.
- Add 1 tablespoon of rubbing alcohol to 3 tablespoons of dish soap. Mix thoroughly.
- Carefully pour the alcohol-soap solution over the mustard stain. Let it sit for 10 minutes so that it can break down the chemical bonds of the stain.
- Rinse the article under warm water and then give it a cycle in your washing machine. Like the previous methods, use the hottest wash your clothing will allow.
Removing mustard stains with lemon juice
Want to break down that mustard stain so that it’s easier to remove? Squeeze some lemon juice on it. The critic acid will attack the structures of the stain.
- Cover the stain with some lemon juice and gently work it into the fabric.
- Leave the juice for several minutes.
- Wash your clothing under some cold water.
- Launder the garment as you normally would.
6. How to remove mustard stains from non-washable clothing
If your mustard landed on a piece of clothing that can only be dry cleaned, there is a way to deal with the situation before you consider professional help.
One thing to note about this method is that it is only suitable for fresh stains. If the mustard stain has been left for a while, your best option is to take the item to the dry cleaners.
- Cover the stain with a dry cleaning solvent such as Albachem.
- Wait for the solvent to dry.
- Use a soft-bristled brush and gently stroke over the stain. Avoid this step if the fabric is delicate.
- Dab at the stain with a damp cloth.
- Reapply the dry cleaning solvent.
If the stain remains, use some white vinegar on a cloth to wipe away the mark. Start at the center of the stain and stroke outwards toward the stain’s edges.
For white fabrics use 3% hydrogen peroxide to remove the stain. Follow the above steps first, Finish off the process by moistening the stained area with a cloth dipped in hydrogen peroxide.
If the above method didn’t work, take your garment to the dry cleaners.
Mustard can be one of the hardest stains to remove. To improve your chance of success in dealing with the stain, you need to act fast.
For washable fabrics, you can use vinegar, laundry detergent, or lemon juice to treat the stain.
Those items of clothing that can’t be placed in the washing machine require a dry-cleaning solvent.
If you have tried the above methods and the stain refuses to leave, then you need to visit your dry cleaner.