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A cup and pot of tea.

How to Remove Tea Stains

Do you look forward to a relaxing cuppa each day? Don't let a spill ruin it. Find out how to remove tea stains with our helpful step-by-step guide!

As a nation, we can’t deny that we’re partial to a cup of tea every now and then, but what happens if a nice fresh brew gets spilt? Stains happen! Tea stains can be a real nightmare, especially on white clothing, but Persil is here to help. With a touch of knowledge and a few clever techniques, you’ll see that tea stain removal is actually quite simple!  

How to Get Tea Stains Out of Clothes

Tea is known for leaving yellowish, brownish stains on clothing that can look unsightly, particularly on light coloured clothing, but removing tea stains can be pretty straightforward. Before attempting any of the methods below, the first thing you should do is:  

– Hold the tea stain under warm running warming

Tea is water-soluble, which means the stain can easily be flushed out of many types of fabric. This is perfect for if you’re not at home when the spill happens – flushing the stain with water as quickly as possible will help to reduce the discolouration; this will make it easier for a stain remover to tackle those unsightly marks left behind.

Then, you can proceed with one of these four simple methods below – just be sure to wet the garment again, if you’re not at home when you first attempt flushing the stain.  

Remember: test your chosen stain removal solution on a small, hidden area of the garment first before covering the whole stain and check the care label on your garment for specific washing advice for the type of fabric.  

Method 1: Persil Dual Actions Capsules

This method uses the built-in stain removers found in each and every one of Persil’s Dual Action Capsules.  

  • While the clothing is still wet, place it into the washing machine and wash at a warm temperature – about 30 degrees Celsius. Pop a Persil Dual Action Capsule directly into the drum – the built-in stain removers will get to work on any stubborn stains. Just remember to follow the instructions on the packaging carefully (you can read more about using capsules safely here) and to keep caps away from kids.

Method 2: Persil Small & Mighty

This method utilises the cleaning power of Persil small & mighty Bio, which can be used as an effective pre-treatment for stains.  

  • Use the Persil small & mighty dosing ball to apply detergent directly onto the wet stain. Gently massage the detergent into the fabric, allowing it to penetrate deep down into the fibres and help lift the stain out from the fabric.

  • Pop into the washing machine at 30 degrees, with another dose of Persil small & mighty poured into the detergent drawer or placed in the drum using the dosing ball, just check the product label for specific dosing instructions. There’s no need to boil your clothes for hours – Persil small & mighty promises brilliant stain removal for black tea even in a quick wash!

Method 3: Vinegar

Vinegar is an acetic acid, which is known for its stain removing properties. Applying vinegar to a stain is a good alternative if you don’t have any laundry detergent to hand!  

  • Apply vinegar directly to the wet stain. Make sure it’s white vinegar as brown malt vinegar could stain your clothing even more! Allow the vinegar to soak in for 30 minutes to dissolve the stain and then rinse once more. When you have laundry detergent, pop the clothing in the wash to get rid of the vinegar smell.

Method 4: Baking Soda

Baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) – the same stuff you use to make cakes – is really absorbent and, in a pinch, it’s a great stain remover.  

  • While the stain is still wet, apply a thick layer of baking soda directly to the stain. The powder will absorb any remaining tea, drawing the colour out of the clothing and into the powder. Leave overnight, and then scrape the powder off. Most of the stain should be removed, but once you’ve got some laundry detergent to hand pop it in the wash.

Now that you know how to remove tea stains – even if you don’t have any laundry detergent in your cupboards – you can enjoy that fresh morning brew without worry! If you accidentally spill your tea, you can be rest assured you know the best ways to remove tea stains and get your clothes looking clean and fresh once more.  

Check out our stain cheat sheet for more advice on treating common stains!