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How to Remove Wine Stains the Right Way, According to Experts

Aug 31, 2023

Spills happen. Here’s what to do!

Whether it’s a cozy cocktail party or a large family gathering, there will be spills! But you don’t have to panic if you spill wine on your favorite blouse, table linens or carpet. “The key is to act fast,” says Michael Silva-Nash, vice president of operations for Molly Maid USA. “The sooner you can act, the better your chances that you’ll be able to get out a wine stain.”

That doesn’t mean you have to start cleaning immediately, say, if you’re in the middle of a celebration. But you can take a few basic steps to mitigate the mess and prevent the stain from setting, says Silva-Nash.

The most important thing to remember is that you should never, ever scrub a spill, especially on fabrics and textiles. “That not only damages the fibers, it also drives the stain deeper into the fibers,” says Silva-Nash. Instead, use a white cotton cloth or white paper towel to blot us as much as possible of the liquid. Avoid using a colored cloth or a paper towel that has a printed design because you risk transferring dyes to the area you’re blotting.

Silva-Nash also emphasizes that you should test any cleaning or spotting products on a small, inconspicuous area of the fabric or surface before proceeding. And if you aren’t comfortable trying these DIY methods, contact a cleaning professional. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

Ahead, follow these suggestions from Silva-Nash, the University of Georgia (UGA) College of Family and Consumer Services, and the Carpet and Rug Institute to get out wine stains from a variety of materials:

Arricca Elin SanSone has written about health and lifestyle topics for Prevention, Country Living, Woman's Day, and more. She’s passionate about gardening, baking, reading, and spending time with the people and dogs she loves.

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