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How to Get Grease Stains Out of Clothes

Clothes are super important to take care of. There is so much that goes into taking care of clothes like getting the grease out of them. It can seem daunting, but it’s definitely worth it in the end!

Clothes can get greasy and icky, and sometimes it seems like no matter what you do, the grease just won’t come out!

Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to get rid of that grease and get your clothes looking and smelling fresh again.

Grease stains can be a real pain, but with these tips, you can get rid of them quickly and easily. Just remember to pre-treat the stain, wash in hot water, use a detergent designed for greasy stains, and dry thoroughly.

The good news is, with a little bit of effort and elbow grease, you’ll have your clothes looking and smelling fresh again in no time!

Here is the scoop on how to get grease out of clothes!

What Are Grease Stains?

Tough grease stains are the result of any type of oil or fat that has come in contact with the fabric. You could be dealing with anything from cooking oils, chocolate stains, a black grease stain from motor oil, to bike grease; and it can be a real pain to get out of clothes, especially cotton clothing!

The good news is that grease stains are not all that common, and they can be removed relatively easily if you know how to do it, using your best judgment and not scrubbing the affected area of fresh grease stains will be a lifesaver when it comes to fighting the toughest stains.

Let’s take a look at the best tips for grease stain removal!

How to Get Grease Out of Clothes: The Basics

The easiest way to start the process is to follow these two simple steps: first, read the fabric care label so you know what you’re working with. Then, make sure you keep an effective stain remover like Shout in your laundry room (a commercial stain remover that is also a color-safe bleach) for best results.

The following steps are just a few basic things you need to do in order to get grease out of clothes:

– identify the source (like old grease stains or excess oil from oily stains or artificial sweetener spills).

-pre-treat the stain with household products (take a white paper towel or a clean paper towel or clean cloth and dab with dishwashing liquid or dish detergent in a soft circular motion to break up tough stains) or scrape with a butter knife if the stain has hardened.

– treat the stain 

– wash the garment in the hottest water or just warm water with liquid detergent.

– use a detergent designed for greasy stains.

– dry the garment thoroughly

Let’s take a closer look at each one of these steps!

Identify Your Stain

The first thing you need to do is identify what is causing the grease on your article of clothing. Is it cooking oil? Motor oil? Grease from a machine? This is a good idea because once you know where the grease is coming from, it will be easier to get rid of it.

If you can easily identify where the oil is coming from, then you can take some preventative measures to stop it from getting on your clothes in the first place. Also, if you’re cooking with oil, try using a splatter guard to keep the oil from hitting your clothes. If you’re working on a car, your best bet is to try wearing an old shirt to protect your regular clothes.

Pre-Treating the Stain

The first step in getting rid of a grease stain (like bacon grease) is to pre-treat it, this is important for difficult stains with too much grease or regular food stains. This involves using a product, a sprinkle of salt, or a bit of dish soap that will break down the grease and make it easier to remove during the washing process.

There are a few different products you can use for this, but one of the most effective is dish soap. Simply apply a small amount of liquid dish soap to the stained area (bar soap won’t work as well), and rub it in gently with your fingers. You can even throw a sprinkle of baby powder or baking soda on there with clean water to break up the stain, especially before using laundry detergent or throwing it in the washing machine.

The best way to complete this step is to let the soap sit on the stain for a few minutes before moving on to the next.

Treating the Stain

If the grease is caused by vegetable oil, try using a wet paper towel instead of a dry paper towel to remove the excess grease, and then try using a dishwashing detergent to help remove the rest. Dishwashing detergent (with aloe vera) is designed to break down oils and fats and break the hydrogen bonds, so it should be able to take care of the grease on your clothes as well. Add 1-2 tablespoons of dishwashing detergent to a gallon of warm water, and soak your clothes in the mixture for 30 minutes. Then, wash them as usual.

If the grease is caused by motor oil, try using a degreaser or lemon juice and a white cloth to remove it. Degreasers are formulated to break down the oils and fats in motor oil, so they should be able to take care of the grease on your clothes as well. Add 1-2 tablespoons of degreaser to a gallon of warm water, and soak your clothes in the mixture for 30 minutes. Then, wash them as usual after trying this stain removal method.

If the grease comes from a machine, try using a laundry detergent that is perfect for greasy clothes. Add 1-2 tablespoons of laundry detergent to a gallon of warm water or room temperature water (avoid cold water), and soak your clothes in the mixture for 30 minutes. Then, wash them as usual.

Be careful with delicate fabrics like silk and wash in cool water. If you still have a tough time with the stain, you may want to take it to a dry cleaner. Dry cleaning will help rid the stain for good and with steam and excess water will come right out.

Washing the Garment in Hot Water

Water temperature is important when dealing with any piece of clothing. High heat will penetrate the stubborn oil between the fabric fibers or synthetic fabrics and synthetic fibers. Once you have identified and treated the source of the grease, it’s time to remove it from your clothes. Be sure to use hot water for this, as it will help to break down the grease and make it easier to remove.

If the garment is small enough, you can wash it in your sink to get rid of the stubborn stains. Otherwise, you’ll need to use your washing machine.

Once the garment is wet, add a generous amount of detergent for greasy stains and scrub the area gently with your fingers.

To do this, simply add 1-2 cups of white vinegar to a gallon of warm water, and soak your clothes in the mixture for 30 minutes. Then, start the wash cycle as usual. An average laundry cycle should take about an hour. With the help of that small amount of dish soap and the white vinegar, the stubborn oil or grass stains will break down and be gone from your clothes.

Drying the Garment Thoroughly

The next step in getting rid of a grease stain is to dry the garment thoroughly. Ideally, you should hang the garment up to air dry.

Do not put your garment in the dryer. Using a dryer with heat will only set the stain and make it even more difficult to get out.

If you find your average laundry cycle or none of these methods/alternative methods seem to be working, you may need to resort to more drastic measures and try another different method to get into the fibers of the fabric. Try using a commercial stain remover or even bleach to get the grease out of your clothes, especially when it comes to motor oil stains or a top of the grease stain.

Be sure to follow the instructions on the product carefully, and test it on a small, hidden area of your garment first to make sure that it won’t cause any damage.

Enjoy Your Clean Clothes!

Now that you know how to get grease out of clothes, you can keep your clothes looking and smelling fresh. Be sure to follow these steps/alternative method the next time you have a grease stain on your clothing.

Do you have any other tips for getting rid of tough stains? Share them with us in the comments below!

Getting grease out of clothes can seem like a daunting task, but with these simple steps, you can to get the job done in no time!

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