How to Remove Suntan Lotion Stains From Clothing

Written by kimbry parker
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How to Remove Suntan Lotion Stains From Clothing
Clean suntan stains at first sight, so they don't spread farther. (Girl on the beach image by Piotr Bizior from

Suntan lotion is a staple for summer. You put it on your skin to enhance your tan, but you don't intend for it to get on your clothes. The oily nature of suntan lotion can leave an unsightly stain on your clothes. It is best to treat suntan lotion stains as soon as you spot them for best results; however, even if the lotion has dried onto your clothes, you can still remove the stain. You don't need to throw away an otherwise good piece of clothing because of a suntan lotion stain.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Plastic spoon or knife
  • Rag
  • Bucket or sink
  • White vinegar
  • Laundry pretreatment spray

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  1. 1

    Scoop up as much of the lotion from the clothing as possible. Use a plastic spoon or knife to gently scrape up the lotion. Blot the area with a rag to remove excess lotion further.

  2. 2

    Place the stained clothing in a bucket or sink. Pour enough white vinegar into the bucket or sink to completely cover the suntan lotion stain.

  3. 3

    Let the garment soak in the vinegar overnight. Remove it from the vinegar the next day and wring it out lightly to remove excess liquid.

  4. 4

    Apply a laundry pretreatment spray to the spot. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes.

  5. 5

    Wash the clothing as usual. Use the hottest water setting allowed for the fabric.

  6. 6

    Let the clothing air-dry after washing. Do not place the clothing in the dryer until you are sure that all traces of the suntan lotion or gone. The heat from the dryer only will set in the stain.

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