What is the Best Way to Remove Wine from Clothing?

Wine stains on white clothing can often be removed by pretreating with hydrogen peroxide before washing.
The tannins in red wine is what gives it its dark red color and it is also what makes red wine stains so difficult to remove.
Be sure the stain is completely gone before putting the clothing in the dryer.
A red wine spill can be neutralized with white wine.
The tannins in red wine bonds to cotton and polyester fabrics easily making stain removal from these fabrics almost impossible.
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  • Written By: Deborah Ng
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2015
  • Copyright Protected:
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So you had a little accident, and now you need to remove wine stains from your clothing. Fear not, you’ve come to the right place. That unsightly splash doesn’t have to mean the end of your garment. This brief primer should help the next time you need to remove wine stains.

The key to stain removal is to act as soon as possible. While it isn’t always possible to address the stain right away, it’s important to note that the longer you wait, the harder it will be to remove wine from clothing, carpets or any other fabric. Stains, especially red wine stains, can set in and become permanent if not dealt with right away.

If you’re somewhere with a sink, dab the stain with cold water. Dabbing loosens the stain. If you rub the stain, it’ll just grind it in deeper and wear out the fibers. Blot as much of the stain as you can until you’re at a place where you’ll be able to employ stronger methods.

If there’s still a bit of the stain left, you have several recourses. Vinegar is great for helping to remove wine from fabric. Just as you did with water, blot the stain until you remove as much wine as possible. “Rinse” by blotting with cold water once again.


Here are some other hints to help you remove wine stains:

  • If you spill red wine, chase it with some white. White wine neutralizes red wine. If you spill some red on the carpet or a favorite blouse, just pour white wine over the stain and watch it disappear.
  • Hydrogen peroxide will remove wine as well. Keep in mind however, that it’s a bleaching agent. If you’re using it on colored fabric, test first in a hidden area. You might want to dilute it in two parts water to be on the safe side.
  • Try a mixture of one part dish detergent to three parts water. Blot until the stain is lifted and launder as usual.

If you act quickly, any one of the above methods should remove wine from your clothing with no problem. If it doesn’t, take the garment to your dry cleaner. Be sure to show him the stain in case he has a special detergent he wants to use for that particular spot.

Another important note: don’t apply heat to a stained area. If you place stained clothes in the dryer or use an iron, the stain will become a permanent addition to the fabric.

It’s not difficult to remove wine from your clothing. The key is to act quickly.


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Discuss this Article

Post 1

The white-on-red solution is a great tip. I've seen another one that works, especially for something like a tablecloth. Use salt. Pour enough salt over the wet stain to completely cover it. Allow it to dry for a couple of hours, then brush the salt away. Usually, the stain goes with it. The salt absorbs the wine from the cloth.

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