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How to Remove Red Wine Stains

Set aside everything you know about removing red wine stains – old wives' tales pale in comparison to the proven methods in this article. Cheers without fear!


Reading Time: 5 minutes


Red Wine Stain Removal

Red wine stains are known for being stubborn, but chances are you already own the products to combat them. A spilt drink doesn’t have to mean the end of a great evening – here we offer some essential tips on how to get red wine stains out of your clothes.

When dealing with red wine stains – the trick is to act fast! The more red wine you soak up to begin with, the less intense the stain will be.

Removing Red Wine Stains

What you’ll need:

  1. Salt

  2. Clean cloths/paper napkins

  3. Liquid laundry detergent

  • First, soak up as much excess liquid as you can with kitchen paper, napkins or towels. Be careful to dab gently, so as not to spread the stain or scrub it further into the fabric.

  • They say that white wine can neutralise red wine stains, but why waste good vino! You’re equally likely to have simple table salt to hand, which will soak up the liquid and draw the red wine stains out of the fabric. Cover the entire stain with a thick layer of salt and leave it for a few minutes.

  • Brush away the excess salt – if some red wine stains remain, flush the area with cool water or soda water, and repeat the process

  • If you don’t have salt to hand, fresh kitty litter is a good alternative thanks to its super-absorbent qualities (such remember not to flush it down the drain afterwards).

  • After pre-treating with salt, launder your garment using a good quality liquid laundry detergent such as Omo Ultimate, which uses built-in pre-treaters for amazing stain removal first time. Do not use a hot wash, which can set any remaining stain, and remember to always follow the care label instructions on your garment.

how to remove red wine stains
  • For on-the-go red wine stain removal, mop up as much excess liquid, then flush the stain from both sides using cool water or club soda – the bubbles should help open up the fibres to lift the stain.

  • For removing dried in red wine stains, you’ll need to pre-treat the garment. Remember to always test any new stain removal method on an inconspicuous area of the garment, such as an inside hem, and always follow the care instructions. On colour-fast fabrics, try a 3-to-1 mix of hydrogen peroxide and liquid laundry detergent. Cover the stain from both sides and leave to sit for 20 minutes (do not scrub). While the solution is still damp, launder the garment as usual. A specialist stain removal product will also be effective – always follow the instructions on the label, then launder the garment according to the care label using a good quality detergent like Omo Ultimate.

  • Read the care labels! If you need to remove red wine stains from a more delicate fabric such as cashmere or silk, it might be worth calling in the professionals. Dry cleaning can often be more effective at getting red wine stains out of delicates, and should always be used for dry clean-only fabrics.

  • Blot away excess liquid.

  • Use salt to soak up the stain from the fabric.

  • Launder using a detergent such as Omo Ultimate, which is specially formulated to cut through 48-hour dried-in stains.

Originally published