How to Get Coffee Stains Out of a White Shirt


Coffee may benefit your health, but it does not benefit your clothes. While a coffee stain can seem especially hopeless on a white shirt, you can easily treat and clean it at home. If you’ve recently spilled coffee on a white shirt, laundry detergent is a great method to try. For stains that have dried, try soaking the shirt in a vinegar solution, applying a stain stick, or washing it with bleach.
[Edit]Steps [Edit]Removing Fresh Coffee Stains Check the label to see what your shirt is made out of. Take off the white shirt place it on a flat area, like a table or ironing board. Depending on the fabric, the coffee might not have fully absorbed into the shirt. [1] Materials like cotton and linen absorb more water than fabrics like polyester and acrylic. A stained cotton shirt might require more blotting than a polyester one.[2] Take your shirt to a dry cleaner if you’d prefer to have it cleaned professionally. If you can’t find a good surface to lay your shirt on, consider placing an old towel on a section of floor or carpet. This will secure the shirt without staining the floor below. Soak up the excess coffee with a paper towel. Apply pressure to the stained area with a folded paper towel. Use quick motions to blot up any extra coffee. Place your other hand on the side of the shirt to keep it secure while you blot.[3]

If one portion of the towel absorbs too much coffee, rotate the paper towel so that a clean section blots up the coffee. Use a new paper towel as needed. Soak the shirt in cold water and wring it out. Hold the blotted shirt under cold, running water for several minutes before twisting out any excess. Hold the shirt under the running water until the stained area is completely soaked. Keep the stain submerged for at least 3 minutes, and rub the stain with your fingers to coax it away with water.[4]

Repeat this process as needed until the coffee stain has diminished. Add a coin-sized amount of detergent to the spot. Take your usual laundry detergent and pour a small, coin-sized amount on top of the stain. You don’t need to get a special detergent for this—any kind will do, as long as it’s in liquid form. [5] If you don’t want to pour out too much detergent at once, use the cap to pour a smaller amount. Rub the detergent in with your fingers and let it sit for 3-5 minutes. Put on rubber gloves and rub the cleaning product into the coffee stain before leaving the shirt alone for at least 3 minutes. Use short, gentle movements, so you don’t disturb the fabric of the shirt. While the fabric is damp, rub in the detergent.[6]

Massage the coffee stain after 5 minutes. Use the tips of your fingers to rub any lingering detergent into the fabric. This final effort helps to remove any visible portions of the stain before you put it in the washing machine. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t see any visible changes after rubbing in the detergent.[7]

Wash your hands thoroughly after making direct contact with any cleaning agents. Rinse out any remaining detergent. Hold the shirt over a sink and turn on the faucet. Use cold, running water to rinse the detergent out of the stained area. Take both hands and wring the water out until there are no more suds rinsing out of the shirt.[8]

Clean your shirt using the washing machine. Take the damp shirt and place it into your washing machine. Pour a small amount of regular detergent into the machine before beginning the cycle. Ideally, the water should be somewhere between and so the stain doesn’t set. You can wash this shirt in a separate load or with other whites.[9]

Switch to a stain removal detergent if you want to use a stronger cleaning formula. Make sure that the stain is gone before drying. Remove the shirt from the washing machine and check to see if the stain is gone. Do not dry or iron the shirt until you’re positive that you’ve removed the stain. Heat makes stains permanent in clothing.[10] If there’s still a coffee stain visible after you’ve treated and washed the shirt, consider using some other home remedies, like bleach, vinegar, or stain remover. [Edit]Getting Rid of Dried Coffee Stains Remove your shirt and check to see what it’s made out of. Take off your shirt and lay it on a flat surface so that you can examine it more carefully. Coffee tends to completely soak through natural fibers like linen and cotton, but it may have only stained the surface of less absorbent materials like polyester. More absorbent clothing fibers like cotton and linen may have to soak in a cleaning solution longer than polyester or acrylic materials.[11] Acrylic fibers are also more water-resistant. Pour warm water into a large container. Use a faucet to pour of warm water into a bucket or other large container. The water should be lukewarm, and not hot to the touch. Make sure that the shirt can fit in the bucket or container without any water overflowing.[12]

Water is considered lukewarm between and . Mix white vinegar and dish soap into the water. Measure out of white vinegar and of dish detergent and stir them into the warm water. Mix the solution for 1-2 minutes until you are sure that the detergent has dissolved completely. Use a ruler or a long, wooden spoon to stir the mixture together.[13]

You can use distilled white vinegar instead of the regular kind. Distilled vinegar is purified and a little less acidic than regular white vinegar, so it won’t be as potent in the mixture.[14] Soak the shirt in the mixture for 15 minutes. Use both hands to delicately place the stained shirt into the vinegar and dish soap solution. Let the shirt soak for at least 15 minutes, so the mixture can set into the stain. Don’t worry if it doesn’t soak for that exact amount of time.[15]

Rinse out the shirt to check the stain. Remove the shirt from the bucket and wring it out over the sink. Turn on the faucet so that cold water runs over the shirt. Take a close look at the fabric to see if the stain has washed out completely.[16]

Apply a stain removal agent if vinegar doesn’t work. Check the instructions on your stain removal agent and apply the designated amount of product to the stain. Let the product sit for several minutes, depending on what the instructions say.[17] Purchase stain removal agents at any store that sells laundry detergent. Wash with bleach if the stain persists. Add your shirt to a larger load of wash that you plan to bleach. Double check all clothing labels to make sure that each item can be washed with bleach. Pour in the specified amount into your load of wash and run a hot water cycle.[18] Don’t use bleach if your shirt is made of silk, leather, wool, or Lycra. Instead, try using a stain removal agent again. Clean your washing machine after running a cycle with bleach. Air-dry the shirt in an open area. Take the rinsed shirt and hang it in an open area. Hang your shirt outside or indoors.[19] Make sure that the shirt gets plenty of open air so it can dry completely.[20] Buy an indoor drying rack at a home supply store to make sure that your shirt gets an even amount of air while drying.[21] Don’t put the stained shirt in the dryer until the stain is removed. Large amounts of heat will permanently set the stain.[22] [Edit]Things You’ll Need [Edit]Removing Fresh Coffee Stains Paper towel Laundry detergent Rubber gloves [Edit]Getting Rid of Dried Coffee Stains Vinegar Dish soap Bleach Stain remover [Edit]References ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑

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