By Bryce GruberApr 26, 2023
As soon as you little one starts walking and making the most of your backyard or local playground, grass stains are bound to happen. These tricky, chlorophyll-based stains can be troublesome for parents, which is why we called in the experts to explain how to remove grass stains like the pros.
"With any stain, the sooner you remove it—the better," says Marla Mock, president of Molly Maid and cleaning expert with years of hands-on experience. "Dried grass stains are much more difficult to remove than fresh grass stains." She suggests the following steps to loosen the green-hued marks from most fabrics:
It's important to remember that the entire process should be handled with cold water. Hot water and warm temperatures will set grass stains (and most others) into the fabric more permanently.
The process for removing grass stains from jeans and denim fabrics is the same as listed above, but because canvas tends to be thicker (and often lighter in color) than other fabrics, you may benefit from additional scrubbing. That means using a scrub-head stain removal product or a specialized stain-scrubbing brush.
If you or your child wears denim regularly and is prone to lots of playground action and adventure, keeping a denim scrub brush in your arsenal. These also come in handy when you're trying to figure out how to remove grass stains from shoes, boots and their best kids sandals.
These grass stain removers are tried-and-true winners that promise to get the job done with ease. Use them to soak the stain, gently rub and then throw in the washing machine with cool water.
A little goes a long way with this heavy-duty Carbona Stain Devils product that comes in an easy-to-handle bottle. This product quickly breaks up chlorophyll, dirt, mud and other grimy messes that toddlers absolutely love surprising us with.
"I bought this to try to remove a stain on an old favorite yellow jacket," writes verified Amazon reviewer, C. Schroyer. "The stain had been on the sleeve for probably ten years. I applied the product let is soak a while, gave the stain a brush for a few minutes and washed it on delicate and IT CAME OUT! I'm so glad I had not tossed out the jacket. It looks brand new."
Working old stains and difficult grass marks out of jeans, shoes and thicker fabrics doesn't have to be a chore. This stain removal brush from The Laundress makes a quick task of loosening pigment and debris. Plus, the ergonomic handle is easier on both adult and kid hands than typical laundry scrubbers. (Yes, we do think it's a good idea for kids to help with the laundry.)
Use it directly on the stained area, though remember to use cool water vs. warm water to keep stains from setting. It helps get rid of grass stains, ketchup stains and even those pesky chocolate ice cream stains that plague our favorite summer shirts.
Whether you don't have time to order conventional grass stain busters or you just prefer to go the all-natural route, Marla says vinegar may be your secret weapon.
"If you're using white vinegar to remove grass stains, mix equal parts vinegar and water. Then work the solution into the stain. Allow the solution to stand for five minutes."
You'll still need to toss the vinegar solution-treated grass stains into the laundry machine with your usual soaps, though. Of course, use the cool cycle and don't throw your garments in the dryer until you're entirely sure the grass stains have been fully lifted.
In a pinch? Rubbing alcohol can be diluted and used in exactly the same fashion.
While it may help a little to bleach the stain, it won't do much to lift mud or chlorophyll marks. In fact, it may even damage delicate fabrics.
Anything that says 'dry clean only' on the label should be taken to professional cleaners. Silks, cashmere and leather shouldn't be cold water soaked either.
It is a detergent, though a harsh one. If you have a fresh grass stain and no access to your stain removal kit and brush, a dollop of dish soap diluted in plenty of cool water can help keep the stain hydrated and ready to treat. The surfactants in dish soap will likely lift excess dirt, mud and fat-based stains in your fabric as well.
It won't remove grass stains from clothes entirely, though, because dish soap isn't designed to remove pigments like those found in nature.
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