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How to fix colors that bleed on a swimming suit

Updated February 21, 2017

Clothes can be completely ruined if the colours bleed. Unfortunately, this happens all too often. Clothes with bright colours should always be washed alone, and swimming costumes should even be handwashed to ensure no bleeding occurs. The material of swimming costumes, along with the amount of chlorine in pools, and the bright colours normally used for swimming costumes add to the potential of the colours fading or bleeding. To remove previous stains from the suit bleeding, or to avoid future bleeding, always wash the garment alone and try a few steps before you wash your swimming costume to prevent the bleeding.

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  1. Mix water, ammonia and dish detergent in a spray bottle.

  2. Spray the swimming costume with the mixture until the garment is saturated. (If the whole suit is stained, soak the swimming costume in a bucket with the mixture in step 1. Do this for 20 minutes.)

  3. Brush the swimming costume with the toothbrush. Brush vigorously, but gently, over the areas that have bled. Wash the suit as you normally would.

  4. Add green tea to HOT water in large bucket. Soak the swimming costume for 15 minutes.

  5. Sprinkle table salt on the dye stain. Allow the salt to stand on the suit for 15 minutes.

  6. Wash the swimming costume by hand in a sink. Gently run it under warm water until the water runs clear. Hang dry.

  7. Tip

    For other ways to prevent and fix colours that bleed in the wash, visit: www.thriftyfun.com/tf53508506.tip.html When "brushing" the suit, use a child's soft bristled brush. This will help clean the suit but not damage it.


    Always test a small, unseen area of the garment to see if the swimming costume is effected by the ammonia. Only bleach a swimming costume as a last resort and if the inside tags says is safe to bleach (but remember to use non-chlorine bleach).

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Things You'll Need

  • 2 cup water
  • 2 cup ammonia
  • 1/4 cup dish detergent
  • Spray bottle
  • Toothbrush
  • Large bucket
  • Green tea
  • Table salt

About the Author

Andrea Griffith has been writing professionally since 2005. Her work has been published by the "Western Herald," Detroit WDIV, USAToday and other print, broadcast and online publications. Although she writes about a wide range of topics, her areas of expertise include fashion, beauty, technology and education. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and English from Western Michigan University.

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