Does White Wine Stain Clothes?

Have you ever been at a party, enjoying a glass of white wine, when suddenly, you spill some on your clothes? You might think it’s not a big deal compared to a red wine spill, but it will still be an inconvenience. 

Although white wine is clear, it can still leave a mark on your clothes, especially if they are light-coloured or delicate. This is because the acids and other substances in the white wine will still cause subtle stains, or at times, may change your fabric’s colour slightly. 

Let’s go into more detail in this article, and learn how to remove the wine stains using various products. 

What You Need To Know About White Wine Stains

Why does white wine stain? To keep it short, white wine contains substances like tannins and acids, which will affect the fabric of your clothes. Of course, since it does not have the deep colouring that red wine does, a white wine stain is often easier to remove. 

How your clothes will be affected will depend on their fabric and colour. Delicate fabrics such as silk and wool are more likely to absorb wine stains. Light-coloured garments, like white and pastels, will also display the white wine stains more than those that are made with dark-coloured materials. 

white dress with white wine stain

Before trying to remove white wine stains, make sure to remember this: dab, not rub. Dab the stain gently with a paper towel or clean cloth to soak up the excess wine. 

Avoid using hot water, and also the tumble dryer, unless all stains are completely removed. The hot temperature will just set the stains, which could make them permanent. 

As much as possible, air dry your garments once you’re done with treating the stains. The entire process can be harsh on your clothes, and popping them into the dryer will just put them under more stress. 

TIP: Rubbing stains with a cloth or paper towel will make the stain worse, as it will just push it deeper into the fabric.

How To Remove Fresh White Wine Stains On Clothes

When it comes to all kinds of stains, the most important thing you can do is act quickly. If you’re still outside and you can’t deal with it yet, just blot the stain away with a paper towel. 

Once you’re home, make sure to treat the stains ASAP. Fresh stains are much easier to clean, and you can do it with a liquid detergent, white vinegar, or even bicarbonate of soda.

Here are the most effective ways you can choose from that are guaranteed to remove fresh white wine marks for good: 

Using Liquid Detergent

Liquid detergent is great for treating fresh wine stains. Plus, you don’t have to go on a shopping trip as you can use the one you already have at home. 

How? Liquid detergent contains ingredients such as surfactants that break down and lift the stains from fabrics. Hence, it can also be used for pre-treating various kinds of stains. 

What to do:

  1. Rinse the stained area with cold water from the back of your clothing to push the stain out.
  2. Pour a small amount of liquid detergent directly onto the stain, then gently rub it in with your fingers or a soft-bristled brush. Allow it to sit for a few minutes.
  3. Rinse the area thoroughly with cold water. If the stain remains, repeat the process. 
  4. Wash the garment according to its care instructions
  5. Air dry the garment. 

Using White Vinegar

Distilled white vinegar is also wonderful for lifting white wine stains. Once you’re done using it with your fabrics, you can also expect them to be soft, as white vinegar is a great fabric softener alternative!

white vinegar and dress with white wine stain

How? The acidity of the vinegar helps dissolve the wine’s pigments and breaks down the stain. 

What to do:

  1. Rinse the stained area with cold water to dilute the wine.
  2. Apply white vinegar directly to the stain.
  3. Let the vinegar sit on the stain for several minutes to penetrate the fibres and loosen the stain.
  4. Blot the area with a clean cloth to absorb the vinegar and lift the stain. Avoid rubbing and just press down to soak up the liquid.
  5. Rinse the area with cold water to remove the vinegar and any remaining wine residue.
  6. Wash the garment according to its care label instructions, preferably in cold water, to remove any remaining stain and vinegar odour.
  7. Air dry the garment to ensure the stain is completely removed. 

TIP: To use white vinegar as a fabric softener alternative, add half a cup to the fabric softener compartment of your washer on your next laundry session!

Using Bicarbonate Of Soda

Bicarbonate of soda is effective not just for brightening fabrics, but also for removing stains! 

How? It’s simple, the alkaline nature of the bicarbonate of soda helps break down the acidic components of the wine, making the stain easier to wash out. 

What to do:

  1. Mix the bicarbonate of soda with water to create a paste. The consistency should be thick enough to stick to the fabric.
  2. Apply the paste generously over the stained area, ensuring it is completely covered. The bicarbonate of soda will help absorb the wine and lift the stain from the fabric.
  3. Allow the paste to dry completely on the stain. This could take several hours, depending on the thickness of the paste. You can also leave it overnight. 
  4. Once the paste is dry, scrape it off gently with a spoon or brush. Most of the wine stain should come off with the dried paste.
  5. Rinse the area with cold water to remove any remaining paste and stain residue.
  6. If any stain remains, reapply the paste, let it dry, and then rinse again.
  7. Wash the garment, following the care label instructions. 
  8. Air dry the garment. 

SEE ALSO: How To Make White Clothes Whiter With Baking Soda

How To Remove Old White Wine Stains On Clothes

If you were not able to deal with the white wine stain early, you’ll need more patience to lift it off. 

Also, you’ll have to use tougher products as white vinegar and bicarbonate of soda may not be enough to remove the hardened wine marks. 

Using Shop-Bought Stain Removers

Shop-bought stain removers are your best bet for stubborn wine marks, as they are specifically formulated to deal with various types of stains. 

They often contain a mix of solvents, surfactants, and enzymes that work together to break down and lift stains from fabrics. 

What to do:

  1. Test the stain remover on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric to ensure it doesn’t cause discolouration or damage.
  2. Apply the stain remover directly to the white wine stain, following the product’s instructions. 
  3. Allow the stain remover to sit on the stain for the specified amount of time according to the product instructions. This allows the chemicals to break down the wine stain.
  4. After the recommended waiting time, blot the area with a clean, white cloth to remove the stain and the stain remover. Avoid rubbing to prevent spreading the stain.
  5. Rinse the fabric with cold water to remove any remaining stain remover and loosened stain particles.
  6. Wash the garment as usual, following the care label instructions, and using the appropriate water temperature for the fabric. 
  7. Air dry.
Dr. Beckmann Stain Devils Fruit & Drinks | With active oxygen booster | 50g
  • With active oxygen booster
  • Targets & removes stains such as red wine, coffee, tea, fruit and vegetable stains as well as juice, hot chocolate, mould and mildew stains

Using Oxygen Bleach

Oxygen bleach is extremely effective for removing white wine stains, especially on colour-safe and white fabrics. It works by releasing oxygen when dissolved in water, which helps to break down and remove the stain.

What to do:

  1. Mix the oxygen bleach with water according to the product’s instructions to create a soaking solution. Ensure the solution is well diluted to avoid damaging the fabric.
  2. Submerge the stained garment in the oxygen bleach solution, ensuring the stained area is fully immersed. Allow it to soak for the time recommended on the product label.
  3. After soaking, check the stain. If it’s lighter or gone, remove the garment from the solution and rinse it thoroughly with cold water.
  4. If the stain persists, you can apply a more concentrated oxygen bleach solution directly to the stain and let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing.
  5. Wash the garment as per the care label instructions, then air dry. 

SEE ALSO: Bleach Vs Oxygen Bleach (what’s the difference & when to use them)

BONUS: How To Remove White Wine Stains On The Carpet

Before we end this article, it wouldn’t be right to not include a bit of info as to how to remove wine stains on your carpet! 

Here’s what you can do: 

  1. Blot up as much wine as possible using a clean, dry cloth. Press down on the stain but don’t rub it.
  2. Mix a solution of one part white vinegar and two parts water and apply it to the stain. Blot with a clean cloth until the stain starts to lift.
  3. If the stain is still visible, use a carpet stain remover, following the instructions carefully to avoid damaging the carpet fibres.

And there you have it! Whether you’re dealing with white wine stains on your clothes or carpet, the important thing is to act quickly and use the right product. 

Do you have tips to share? Leave a comment below!

Frequently Asked Questions 

Are wine stains permanent?

Wine stains are not necessarily permanent but can be difficult to remove if not treated promptly. The sooner you address the stain, the better the chances of completely removing it.

How can I quickly remove a white wine stain from my clothes?

To quickly remove a white wine stain from your clothes, blot the stain with a paper towel, rinse with cold water, apply a small amount of liquid detergent, and then rinse thoroughly. Act fast to prevent the stain from setting.

What’s the best wine stain remover?

The best wine stain remover often depends on the fabric and the age of the stain, but liquid detergent, white vinegar, and bicarbonate of soda can be very effective for fresh stains. For older or more stubborn stains, a commercial stain remover or oxygen bleach might be necessary.

Why are wine stains hard to remove?

Wine stains are hard to remove because they contain tannins and acids that bind to fabric fibres, especially if the fabric is porous or delicate, making the stain set quickly and deeply.

Do you use hot or cold water for wine stains?

For wine stains, always use cold water. Hot water can cause the stain to set, making it much harder to remove.

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