How to remove yellow stains from collars

Written by melynda sorrels
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How to remove yellow stains from collars
Collar stains can make a shirt unwearable. (T-shirt image by Antonio Oquias from

A hard day’s work may not only be evident by sore muscles, but by the colour of your collar when you get home. A yellow collar stained by perspiration creates a problem that your washing machine alone can’t solve. Not only do these yellow stains look unfortunate, but smell unpleasant as well. Rather than relying on dry cleaners fix it for a fee or buying new clothing, there are several methods that can leave your collar clean and your pocketbook full.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Bleach-free liquid washing powder
  • Clean cloth
  • Baking soda
  • Dish soap
  • Hair shampoo
  • Lemon

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  1. 1

    Pretreat the stain with a bleach-free liquid washing powder that boasts protein-based stain fighting ingredients. Work the detergent into the collar with a clean cloth or use your fingers and allow it to sit for at least 15 minutes before laundering.

  2. 2

    Mix equal parts baking soda and water to form a paste. Add more baking soda as needed, to ensure that the consistency is thick, yet workable. Dip a clean, damp cloth into the paste and scrub it gently into the stain, leaving it to rest for 20 minutes before laundering.

  3. 3

    Saturate the stained area with liquid dish soap or shampoo and allow it to soak for 30 minutes, up to an hour before rinsing it off with warm water and laundering it.

  4. 4

    Slice a lemon in half and squeeze the juice directly onto the stain, making sure to saturate it thoroughly. Place the garment out in direct sunshine for at least an hour. The combination of the acidity of the lemon and the sunlight will help to bleach the stain out.

Tips and warnings

  • Visually inspect the collar upon taking the shirt out of the washing machine, and attempt to remove the stain again, if it is still there.
  • Heat from the dryer may set the stain permanently, making it impossible to remove. Be sure to eliminate the stain before drying it.
  • Chlorine bleach can make the stain worse and should be avoided.

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