Why Water is Your Best Friend for Stains or Wrinkles

Sonya Glyn NICHOLSON

Why Water is Your Best Friend for Stains or Wrinkles

Sometimes the simple solutions in life offer the best answers to problems.

The use of basic cold water may be one of the most underestimated solutions for curing the problem of stains and wrinkles on fine garments.

And, no matter where you are, if you have a wrinkle or stain problem, it’s usually easy to find a cup of cold water to come to the rescue.

1. FOOD STAINS

Almost nothing can put a damper on a night at a restaurant more than dropping food onto your clothes and wondering whether your garment is ruined or not.

It’s safe to say that practically everyone has had the experience of staining their clothes with food, sauce, or wine.  If only they knew the simple trick of using cold water to correct the problem, many a fine garment could have been saved.

Follow these simple steps to make almost any food stain disappear within seconds.

a) Once a stain insults a garment, you have approximately  2 – 3 minutes before the stain begins to set heavily into the fabric. After the stain occurs, immediately dip a white dinner napkin in cold water and generously apply the water to the stain.

b) Apply cold water over and over again until the stain disappears. Usually two or three applications are sufficient. Sure you will have a water stain initially, but within the hour, the water stain will dry and disappear, and you will have the peace of mind of knowing that the problem is solved.

c) Added tip: In the rare case that the stain is not completed lifted out,  add table salt  and lemon juice to the water and repeat the process. The most important thing to remember is to get cold water onto the stain right away in order to prevent the stain from setting into the fabric.

Use this same method for removing blood and other common stains.

2. WRINKLES

If your shirt is wrinkled and there is no iron in sight, cold water and a white towel can smooth out even the most resistant kinks and crinkles.

Remove pesky wrinkles from your suit, shirt or tie, by submerging a white cloth in cold water. Squeeze out the excess water from the white towel and simply rub the wrinkles out.

As the garment dries, the evidence of wrinkles will dramatically diminish. Sometimes two applications may be necessary. The garment usually dries within 15 minutes or so, and then you are good to go.

3. OTHER STAINS

For ink stains, use rubbing alcohol directly on the stain as quickly as possible. You may also spray the ink stain generously with inexpensive hairspray. Alcohol and hair spray act as a solvent to break up the ink.  Next, soak the shirt in white vinegar for 10 – 20 minutes. Finish by applying white toothpaste with a toothbrush to the stain to further break up any stubborn remnants. Repeat the vinegar soak. Soaking a garment in milk with cornstarch may be another way to further diminish the appearance of an ink stain.

Time is of the essence after the stain occurs, so if you treat the stain quickly, you have a chance of removing it successfully.

For armpit stains and rings around a collar, hand wash the shirt with dish soap and hydrogen peroxide. Rinse. Dry the shirt in the sun to further draw out the appearance of the stain.