How to remove sweat stains from dark clothing

Whether you are nervous or hot from the heat, at some point or another, you are likely to end up with sweat stains on your clothing. If your sweat-stained garment is dark in colour, you will want to proceed with caution so your garment doesn't end up bleached or discoloured. Using supplies from home, you can remove sweat stains from your dark-coloured garment and wear it again, in its prestained condition.

Combine 15 ml (1 tbsp) each of white vinegar and baking soda with 125 ml (1/2 cup) of water in a bowl. The mixture may foam a little due to the combination of baking soda and vinegar.

Apply the baking soda and vinegar mixture to the sweat stains on your dark clothing using a toothbrush.

Scrub the mixture into the stains with the toothbrush. Allow the baking soda and vinegar combination to sit on your sweat-stained garment for 15 to 20 minutes.

Rinse the sweat-stained areas under cold water to remove the baking soda and vinegar mixture, and wash away some of the sweat stain.

Pour an enzyme pre-wash liquid onto any remaining sweat stain on your dark garment. Rub the fabric together to work the pre-wash liquid into the fibres. Allow this to sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

Machine wash your dark-coloured garment according to the directions on the care label.


Change deodorants and anti-perspirants periodically. When you use the same product all the time it can become ineffective.


Avoid using colour-safe bleach on a sweat stain. The bleach may cause the stain to darken or permanently discolour your clothing.

Things You'll Need

  • Bowl
  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Baking soda
  • Old toothbrush
  • Enzyme pre-wash liquid
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About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.