What are your tips for removing makeup stains from your things?

PLEASE GIVE ME ALL YOUR ADVICE! I’m terrible at removing stains in general, except pet ones (go figure!). I am marginally better currently using Zout and washing immediately… but I’d love to hear your tried and true recipes 🙂

— Christine
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I haven’t tried this on any delicate fabrics! But using a disposable mascara wand, a little water, and some Beauty Blender cleanser OR the Original Dawn Dish Soap (the blue one, not concentrated, not oxygenated) (definitely dilute it first so it’s not bang on blue on your light colored fabrics) and scrub with the mascara wand (or soft toothbrush) and voila! I wear those polyester smock dress uniform (thank you Sephora) and get foundation spattered on them often. With normal washing, foundation does not come out until you’ve washed it many times!! But this trick gets it out every time! Worked on a lighter colored, lightweight polyester shirt as well. AND it works well on food stains!! A++

My dear old Mom knew so much about these things! She told me to use cheap hair spray to get ink out of clothing, that cornstarch was great for removing oily, greasy stains, just rub some in, let it absorb for an hour or two, pretreat with detergent. Her tips have always worked. I discovered a fantastic stain remover on my own at the DOLLAR STORE that is seriously kick-butt, called: LA’s Totally Awesome All Purpose Concentrated Cleaner + Degreaser Spot Remover. This stuff got a neon fuschia MAC lipstick out of my jeans!!! I put a towel under the stain, sprayed it on, let it sit a little, then rubbed it out with a slightly damp washcloth. Had to wash them immediately, though.

Cheap hairspray also works on getting foundation & lipstick out of fabric, as well as any vegetable-/protein-based hair dye (ie, Manic Panic, et al). I have an old can of AquaNet in my cabinet as I type this, LOL! Plain isopropyl alcohol works, too, but use the highest alcohol content as possible for faster results. I’ve gotten red lipstick out of ivory/white washable silk blouses using both methods, several times! They also work on blood, chocolate, & grass stains.

Club soda/seltzer water get wine stains out, but should be done immediately.

Using an old pair of nylons/tights, you can buff out deodorant streaks. This can also be used for powders, or even some creams/liquids on synthetic fabrics. As someone who wears black nearly every day, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve done this… Even if you don’t wear nylons, grab a cheap pair at the local dollar store/market. Oh, it also works on toothpaste spatter!

When in doubt, DO NOT try to remove a stain, and take it directly to a dry cleaner. Washing, even in cold water/line drying can make it more difficult to remove, especially on a large stain.

All great tips, Amy! I’ll add hydrogen peroxide (for wound care, NOT hair!) to remove blood stains, even dried ones! Yes, icy cold water is STILL best, but takes more time and involves soaking the entire item. HP is perfect for spot removal, still takes a few q-tips worth, but worth it.

Exactly. Dts is my night job. The horror! My story about ‘yellow cleaner’ is amazing. My mother died in 99. Found a white linen shirt in a dry cleaning bag with a huge, obviously unknown stain on it in 2015. 16 year set in stain. Spritz, spritz, wash with whites…and gone. You cam not detect where the stain was. I tell people whites only, to be safe. It does leach color out of new sponges and other cleaning fabric, so I don’t trust it. Pretty good for most household cleaning, though not the best on grease. And it’s only a buck, spray or refill bottle. I’d never be without it.

If I spill make-up on a surface like a table, I usually just use baby wipes immediately and it would take care of the problem.

For brushes, using cleansing oils before washing them usually takes care of the problem — I honestly just avoid buying white-bristles brushes because the staining really bothers me (thank you, OCPD).

I’d love to hear advice on how to remove make-up stains from carpets and fabric, though — I haven’t found anything that works! >:

A solution of distilled white vinegar, dish soap, & warm water gets stains out of white bristles. An added bonus, the vinegar also acts a rinsing agent, and is a natural sanitizer. If you’re sensitive to the smell, wash a few times with preferred method, and/or air it out a few days.

Generally Google it. I don’t know how many times a search has given me a tip. By this point, every type of makeup stain has occurred and someone’s bound to have a way of saving your favourite items. For example foundation stains can be removed with shaving cream. Put a little on the stain, massage it in, rinse, repeat a couple time, throw in the wash, see if stain has come out (this is super important). If it hasn’t, try the shaving cream again; it does work but it’s time-consuming. Once you know the stain is out, then throw the item in the dryer because if you throw it in the dryer before the stain is out, you pretty much bake the stain in and have to repeat the process on even longer.

Rubbling alcohol does the job from most things. It’s especially good to restore Nars packaging (blushes, eyeshadows, etc.) back to looking brand new.

Your tip is worth the price of admission! Lol. I just tried it on the bottom of an old Smashbox Soft Lights blush that was coated with ‘something yucky’ and it looks like new! Thanks.

I’ve heard that Carbona Stain Devil is good for getting nail polish out of carpets but haven’t tried it myself. Personally, that powdered Comet bleach helped me get depilatory wax off the bathroom counter and floor.

Well I think often just washing things will usually get makeup stains out — doesn’t have to be right away, either. I use face cloths to take off masks, I get mascara stains on my pillowcase (I never can seem to get it all off), I used to get foundation marks on my collar when I was in high school, and washing it always gets it out. Sometimes I soak white clothing in water and White King (not sure if you have it in the US?) overnight if I think it’s getting pretty grimy, and *then* I wash it.

I wonder if it could be the laundry powder? In Australia our laundry powder is all supposedly called “concentrated”, so it’s what we all use. Is that a thing in the US too? I’ve also heard that Napisan OxiAction is really good for getting out stains.

I don’t think I’ve had makeup stains on anything except face cloths and those come out fine in the wash. What I do find is excellent for removing stains generally though is something called Grandmother’s (or maybe it’s Grandma’s) Secret Stain Remover. I squeeze some onto the stain and work it in with a baby toothbrush, let it sit for a few minutes and then launder with the rest of my laundry. That or Oxy Clean seems to take out almost everything.

I forgot about that stain remover! It does work wonders. For those in the US, it can be found at Bed, Bath. & Beyond for around $6.

In general I use makeup remover wipes or baby wipes. In my clothes I use micelar water. I pour a little bit over the stain a rub it lightly until if foams and the stain disapears. Then I wash the piece as usual. It works for me.

uhm for non-washable clothes e.g. leather jacket, raincoat, majority of coats… I use la roche posay sensitive skin make-up removing milk with a cotton pad. It takes all the make-up off and doesn’t leave a stain. For shirts that need to go into the wash however…. I have no clue and would like some advice please =D

well i try to remove them AS SOON AS POSSIBLE like, i use a product called ‘vanish’ which is a stain remover and tend to let it soak for a few days (2 max) … i would love to read your tips too.

409 Spray – on non porous surfaces
Goo Gone – on non porous surfaces for for bad stains like nail polish
Oxy Clean Max Force Spray – as a pre treatment for textiles. Leave a few minutes and scrub lightly, repeat as needed.
Stains are best removed when worked on as soon as they appear!

I somehow always get lipstick or eyeshadow in my carpet. What always gets it out is a bit of laundry detergent and water. I take it on a rag and gently press it into the stain and tada!

I recently had an issue with makeup on the white collar of a dress I was wearing to a wedding. In desperation I tried bioderma and it worked wonderfully!

Dr. Bronners soaps or dish detergent works for make up stains and most other stains. My 9 year old has surely tested the limits of all of her school uniforms! She has allergies, so I dont use harsh chemicals or cleaners and Dr. Bronners seems to work.

It depends on the stain. I like using an enzyme based stain remover though in concert with more conventional options!

Unfortunately I have no clue :/ Luckily I don’t make makeup stains on my clothes very often! I just spray Zout on the stains and wash but sometimes it doesn’t work.

I can’t speak for its effectiveness on delicate/dry clean only fabrics, but on your basic cotton and polyester clothes, I love Orange Goop hand cleaner. It’s industrial-strength but super-gentle, non-toxic, and smells great. I cut myself while making vegetables and got blood on my white shirt and light jeans, and this stuff got it out! I use anywhere from a dime-sized drop to a quarter-sized drop depending on the stain size. I blot off any excess moisture on the stain, apply Orange Goop, let it soak in for 10-20 minutes and throw in the wash. For stains that have set in, I let it soak in overnight. Hope this helps!

I’m fortunate to have only gotten collar stains. I put my clothes on after I’ve applied my makeup. Ive enjoyed reading the how to’s your readers have shared. I heard pour salt on spilled nail polish and it will immediately absorb it up. That’s what they do at Sephora and Ulta.

Dawn Dishwashing detergent. Apply to both sides of garment, let set for a few hours, and rinse in cold water.

If some residue still remains, soak in cold water with Borax.

Laundry stain removers are usually good enough for most things, including carpets. If it’s a glob of something, I wipe up and off, never rub at it. Then I’ll put a paper towel under the stain, and use a Tide pen, baby wipe, or makeup remover wipe to blot out as much as I can. Then I pretreat with stain remover, work it in with a soft toothbrush, and wash according to directions. I make sure the stain is gone before it goes in the dryer, because that will set it. I’ve used hairspray and liquid dish soap to get red lipstick out of clothes.

Beyond that, I Google directions, especially for sensitive fabrics. Most hard surfaces are fine to use a baby wipe or makeup remover wipe on. If I don’t have to worry about damaging the finish, I’m might also use a little isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol), makeup remover or Goo Gone.

Anything oily I’ll spot treat with Woolite and rub in a little before washing. It’s amazing. (Actually it would probably work for regular water-based stuff as well, but it’s particularly impressive on oil stains.)

I generally don’t get makeup stains so that hasn’t been a problem for me.
But after raising a family, you do get every kind of food stain imaginable. First of all I use cold water and Sard soap to scrub the stains out. Using hot water sets a stain.
Often I soak the item in a degreaser and then wash on a cold cycle in the machine. It usually works.

Shout wipes helps with most stains on washable clothing. That’s what a lot of retailers use to fix clothes that have been stained in the fitting room.

Cheap hair spray, like Aqua Net can remove some of the toughest stains from cotton as well as other fabrics/furniture/carpet. The only thing I haven’t tried it on is silk. Spray a liberal amount to the stain, let it dry, and wash normally. It works on ink as well as matte lip stick. It even removes permanent hair color from most fabrics.

There’s a product called Quick n Bright… Bought from HSN or QVC that Works on everything. In comes in a bucket. It takes out indelible marker off of walls, furniture. It removed makeup stains, any stain. It is good for the environment and safe to use on everything. It doesn’t bleach out rugs or walls and is safe and non toxic around pets, children. It’s awesome! I SWEAR by it! There’s no smell of any kind. It’s been MY go to product for over 16 years. No doubt. Hope this helps. 🙂

Dissolving like with like first(silicone with silicone, isododecane with isododecane) to see if it can be dilluted first to make removal easier. I usually use something like a mixing medium product(I use Inglot duraline) or a clear silicone primer based on whatever the makeup’s main ingredients are. It sometimes works when the makeup had already dried. Sometimes, with just that, you can wipe the makeup off easily, but usually I use a type of cleanser to help rub off the makeup(face wash, dish soap, miscellar water, cleansers with “bursting beads” to get some abrasian going and really work it out. If it’s stubborn, sometimes a pure oil or makeup remover(like Neutrogena oil-free makeup remover) helps get it off. Sometimes steam helps loosen certain fabrics up to make removal easier. I keep it concentrated on one area(to make sure the dilution won’t spread) and make sure to keep rinsing with warm water and more removing liquid. Making sure the makeup never dries and scrubbing and working with it. I haven’t had any problems with stains unless I just threw them in the wash and let them dry first.

I haven’t had this for very long ( and didn’t have it when I needed it the most!- huge foundation spill ), but the one I have now is called Carbona Stain Devils for Grass, Dirt, and Makeup. Since I’ve had this one I’ve only used it for a few small spots and it has worked fine. I found it at Walmart. It’s in a little yellow plastic bottle. Read the directions before use.

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