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ibstubro's avatar

Have you ever successfully removed a grease stain from a garment after it was washed?

Asked by ibstubro (18765points) December 25th, 2014

I have a number of sweatshirts I will not wear in public because they have grease stains on them.

Should I just pitch them?

Any tips for disguising the stains? In all seriousness, I’ve considered spattering them all over using a pastry brush and olive oil.

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14 Answers

jca's avatar

I throw them out. I may keep one if it’s not too bad, for around the house, paint projects, etc. Seriously, life is too short to wear stuff that looks like crap. Also, my house is too small to keep stuff that I can’t wear, so in the dumpster it goes.

To answer your question, usually it’s almost impossible to get a real grease stain out. You can try soaking it in a pre-wash treatment but it’s not likely to be entirely gone.

ibstubro's avatar

Mirrors my thoughts, @jca.

janbb's avatar

Washed or dried? It’s usually the dryer that sets the stain. A friend taught me this: Buy Oxy-Clean powder. Make it into a paste with a little water and put it on the stain. Let it sit it a bit; then wash. Sometimes this takes out “stubborn stains”; sometimes not.

ibstubro's avatar

Thanks @janbb.
The latest item I used the scrubby laundry gel thing and then sprayed it with the liquid. Powdered detergent. Never works but I keep trying.

hearkat's avatar

No, I’ve never succeeded once the garment had been laundered. I’ve pondered just soaking the stained shirts in grease so the whole item is covered in one big stain…

If you catch it as soon as it happens, blot the excess and then rub corn starch in it (from both sides to draw the grease out of the fibers, sometimes you can prevent or at least minimize the staining.

ibstubro's avatar

Since I buy all my clothes 2nd hand I sometimes think I missed the stain. Sometimes dish detergent will take out a fresh grease.

I’ve wondered about greasing the whole thing or intentionally spotting it all over @hearkat.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

@ibstubro, I sometimes think I should carry a portable bib with me since I regularly drop food on my shirt. It usually lands centrally between my boobs where nobody could possibly miss a stain. If I don’t manage to get stain remover on it soon and definitely before it’s washed, the stain is set and my experience is the top is ruined.

I just got a great present for my dogs. Beds you fill with your old clothes. Now I can recycle all those old stained tee shirts and they love it!

ibstubro's avatar

I seem to be getting worse about it @Earthbound_Misfit, and I simply will not wear a stained shirt.

I may try spraying one with a can of non-stick pan coating.

jca's avatar

@ibstubro: That sounds disgusting. Just throw it out!

ibstubro's avatar


Miraculously, a whole constellation of non-evaporating spots came out they the combination of stain removers. I’ve tried this a number of times with no previous luck. I have no recollection of having worn the shirt before or where it came from. It’s possible that the stain had not been washed in before.

I’m tickled. Nice, new looking, Aeropostle sweatshirt.

jca's avatar

Aeropostale, yes?

dappled_leaves's avatar

@jca I think Aeropostle is worn by the followers of the Aeropostale movement.

Buttonstc's avatar


For future reference, there is an alternative to just dumping a garment with a stain that just won’t come out no matter what.

Are you familiar with a product called Heat N Bond?

It’s basically a very thin layer of permanent washable clothing glue sandwiched between two pieces of paper.

This enables one to use an iron to affix one side of it to a piece of cloth. It can be a solid color which you will cut into a shape (such as a star) or a pattern containing artwork you like (trees, hunting dogs, whatever) that you can cut around the outline of. This basically makes a custom designed decorative patch.

After you get the material ironed on and cut to size, simply peel off the other sheet of paper, place glue side down and iron for the time specified.

You can also place a few more matching design over places where there aren’t any grease just to even out the design or leave as is.

There’s your new custom designed shirt without grease stain and totally unique.

You can also use Heat N Bond in place of sewing (like raising a hem or covering a rip or tear.)

ibstubro's avatar

Okay I was typing while looking upside down at my chest.

Exactly, @dappled_leaves. ~

Great information, @Buttonstc. Not my cuppa tea, as I’m not crafty and don’t own an iron, but I can see where some of the members above might make good use of this.

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