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How to Remove Sweat Stains - 3-step Simple Guide

How to Remove Sweat Stains - 3-step Simple Guide

Learn how to remove sweat stains without breaking a sweat in three easy steps.

We might not want to admit it but listen, all of us sweat! Whether or not you spend all day long in the hot sun, sweating is natural and our bodies continue to help us with this natural coolant. And while we do love a good sweat, we don’t necessarily love the stains they can leave behind in our clothes. Follow along below for our easy, no-sweat guide on how to remove sweat stains.

What causes sweat stains? 

Once sweat sets in, it can definitely leave a mark. You may have noticed white or yellow discoloration of your clothing due to sweat and thought, “is that what my sweat looks like?” We’re here to clear the air (literally) and let you know that your sweat isn’t yellow at all. It’s clear! Sweat is naturally colorless, and the discoloration you see on your clothes is usually a combination of the oils, fats, and bacteria from your body coupled with ingredients from your deodorant. If you use an aluminum antiperspirant, the aluminum can mix with your sweat and leave behind a tricky yellow stain. The mixture of body oils, bacteria, and deodorant ingredients can become especially difficult once they dry and set into your clothing. This is why it’s always important to wash your sweaty clothes as fast as possible and avoid leaving them at the bottom of your hamper.

How to Remove Sweat Stains in 3 Steps

What you’ll need: White vinegar, a gentle sponge or cloth, Dropps Stain & Odor Detergent, Dropps Oxi Booster

Step 1: Pre-treating Sweat Stains

When it comes to learning how to remove sweat stains, white vinegar is your best friend. This eco-friendly, natural household cleaner is mildly acidic, meaning that it is tough enough to remove the stain without damaging your clothes. In fact, white vinegar is especially effective at targeting the aluminum chloride found in many deodorant products. To pre-treat your sweat stains, simply apply white vinegar to a non-abrasive sponge (we’re biased towards our cellulose Pop-up Sponges) and gently rub the stain area. This will loosen up stain and get it ready for your wash cycle.

blotting stain with sponge

Step 2: Wash Your Sweaty Clothes

While this step seems like a no-brainer, the key to an effective, stain-removing wash cycle is having the right detergent ready on hand! Our Stain and Odor Laundry Detergent contains special enzymes designed to target fats, proteins, and stain-causing material. Looking for an extra boost to wipe out those stains for good? Don’t grab the bleach. Traditional chlorine-based bleach will actually interact with the stain and could cause it to become more yellow! Try a chlorine-free, oxygen-based formula like our Oxi Booster to not only remove the stain, but help brighten your clothes in the process. Thankfully, whether you want to know how to remove sweat stains from white shirts or how to remove sweat stains from colored shirts, the process remains the same. Just toss in one Stain and Odor Laundry Pod with one Oxi Booster and wash your sweat-stained clothes according to the care instructions on the tag.

adding detergent pod to machine

Step 3: Dry Them Out

But first - check the stain! If the sweat stains haven’t been removed, repeat steps 1 and 2 before tossing your clothes in the dryer. Puting sweat-stained clothing in the dryer can actually cause the stain to set in further and make it more difficult to remove in the future. This is a very important step in learning how to remove sweat stains and prevent them from returning. Once the sweat stains are gone, however, you can toss them in your dryer and feel confident drying them according to the care instructions on the tag. Then you’re ready to enjoy fresh, stain-free clothes!

setting dryer time

Frequently Asked Questions

Have more questions about how to remove sweat stains? We’re here to help.

How do you get rid of hard sweat stains? 

White vinegar is a great option in pre-treating and soaking hard, set-in sweat stains. The acidity and the moisture should help loosen up the bacteria, fats, and proteins that have caused the difficult stain.

How do you get armpit stains out of clothes?

Because armpit stains are prone to being neglected and also likely to include aluminum from deodorants, we recommend pre-treating armpit stains with white vinegar before washing them.

Are sweat stains permanent?

While they aren’t necessarily permanent, sweat stains can be difficult if ignored over time! The main things to remember are not to dry your clothes until the stain is fully removed and to use an effective pre-treatment solution and oxygen-based bleach alternative.

How do you get rid of yellow armpit stains?

The yellow armpit stains are usually a result of your sweat mixing with the aluminum in your deodorant, so you’ll want to pre-treat it with a solution like white vinegar that targets aluminum specifically.