Monday, July 13, 2009

Oil stains on blue polo shirts

We've had an ongoing problem for a while now. Once anything slightly greasy touches one of my husband's dark blue polo shirts, the dark stain remains there forever. This kind of stain has stumped me for quite some time now. I finally looked up some advice online and asked around at work. After quite some work, and a $6 investment in some products, I think we've figured it out!!! 4 shirts have now been salvaged from the realms of "just wear it at home", including a dress shirt where a fish oil capsule burst.

First, I made a paste out of some Oxiclean powder and scrubbed that into all the pesky little spots on a T-shirt that a sausage blew up on. Then I dumped it in the washer on hot with our regular detergent and a scoop of Oxiclean. I threw in the 2 other shirts with similar (but fewer) stains. These stains never show up on damp shirts, so we were going to throw them in to the next load of whites (hot) with Oxiclean again. But first...

Hubby had heard that dawn was really good at grease removal. I had seen the commercial where they were cleaning an oil-slicked duck with dawn, too. So I took the dress shirt with the fish oil capsule stain, wet it under the hottest water I could stand, put on about a teaspoon of dawn, and scrubbed it between my hands really hard, occasionally rinsing it with really hot water again. I completely rinsed it out and did that again. Then I added it to the hot load of whites and oxiclean and detergent that also included the one shirt scrubbed with oxiclean paste, and two that were not.

We hung all 4 special shirts to air dry and waited. The two polo shirts with the least serious stains now show no evidence of oil stains! The dress shirt with fish oil had a faded stain, and the oxiclean paste polo shirt with the most and worst stains had faded stains. We're getting somewhere!!

I do the dawn and hand scrub thing to the fish oil dress shirt one more time and throw it and the worst polo shirt in with a different load of hot whites with detergent and oxiclean. This time, the dress shirt came out stain free!!

The worst polo shirt still had some spots, and later got added to a load with a white fuzzy bath mat which I do not recommend! I knew I would have to re-wash it to get off the bathmat fuzz, but this morning I noticed that it still shows 2 or 3 spots of oil. Seeing how there were originally about 10 spots of oil where the poked sausage basically sprayed on the shirt, this is still an improvement of sorts. Maybe I'll try the hand scrubbing with dawn on the knit polo shirt and risk stretching it.

All of these polo shirts had been through the wash AND the dryer before I started trying to treat them. All of these shirts are probably a more faded blue for having been washed hot so many times, but they were ruined anyway. They still don't look too old to wear to work on casual day.

Hopefully someone searching the internet for this info will find my blog and this will help someone else out!

1 comment:

  1. We suffer these stains on Ken's clothes too!! Let me know if you decide the dawn or OXI does a better job, or if it
    s the combo!