How to Remove Pillowcase Stains

Written by jennifer eblin
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Dust mites and bed bugs are just a few of the pests that live inside pillowcases, sheets and other bed linens. A routine weekly cleaning kills those pests and removes stains. Pillowcases can become stained with oil, sweat, and make-up or other beauty care products that rub off on the case as you sleep. Those stains come away easily when you use the right products.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Sponge
  • Towel
  • Mild detergent
  • Pre-soak product
  • Oxygen bleach cleaner

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  1. 1

    Apply a dab of distilled white vinegar to the pillowcase stain, and gently rub it with a sponge. Start at the centre of the stain and slowly work out toward the edges to feather out the stain.

  2. 2

    Lay the pillowcase on a towel, with the stained area facing down. Apply vinegar onto a sponge, and put the sponge inside the pillowcase. Press down on the stain from inside the pillowcase, to push the stain into the towel and out of the pillowcase.

  3. 3

    Turn your washing machine to its lowest setting, and fill it with cool water. Add mild detergent to the washer, and wait for the detergent and water to mix. Add your pillowcase once the water turns sudsy.

  4. 4

    After washing, check for any remaining stain. If staining still exists, soak the pillowcase in a pre-soak product mixed with cool water. Wash the pillowcase again.

  5. 5

    Soak vintage or antique pillowcases overnight in a mixture of oxygen bleach and cool water to remove stains. The oxygen bleach is a powder that cuts through stains like traditional bleach does, but won't dull bright colours in the fabric.

Tips and warnings

  • Add 1/4 cup lemon juice to the wash cycle to remove soap residue and make white pillowcases look brighter.

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