How to Remove Stains from Work Uniforms

Messes happen, especially in industries like food service or automotive repair. Luckily, many common stains can be removed using products you already have in your home, from white vinegar to baking soda. When it comes to stains, always remember to act fast and use the right solvents, and your uniform will be looking good as new in no time.

Food Industry Stains

How to Remove Stains from Work Uniforms

For workers in the food service industry, stains are practically part of the job. Here are tips for the best way to remove stains from common foods and drinks on your work uniforms:

  • Red Wine: Dab the stain with warm water, and then use salt to treat. After 20 minutes, rinse out the salt and wash the item with liquid detergent.
  • Cooking Oil: Remove any excess oil or butter that may still be present on the dirty work uniform. You can then apply an absorbent like cornstarch or baking powder, which will work to soak up the stain. Aim for 30 minutes or more, and then shake off the excess powder and gently brush the stain. Wash the item as soon as possible.
  • Coffee: Household white vinegar is all it takes to pre-treat coffee stains. Dab the problem area. One of the most common mistakes when washing out coffee stains is not using the correct temperature settings on your washing machine. So what temperature water do you need to remove coffee stains? The answer is as hot as possible. Once you’re ready to wash your coffee-stained clothes, set the machine temperature on the hottest setting allowed for the fabric.
  • Tomatoes: Do your best to scrape the stain off the uniform without pushing it further into the fabric. Dab with liquid detergent and launder as normal.

Automotive Stains

Mechanics work with hard-to-remove products all day long, such as machine oil or engine grease. For these stains, treat the mechanic uniform shirts and pants with warm water, and then soak them with heavy-duty detergent. Before washing, dab the stain with more detergent, and then launder separately. For other physical jobs, this is also a great way to remove stains from pants. Whether it’s car oil, mud, or some unknown substance, you can repeat this process as needed until the stain disappears.

Depending on the quality of your mechanic work clothes, however, repeated washing may damage the fabric and stitching itself. This is why buying a high-quality uniform is a must, especially in industries where stains are very common.

Cleaning Service Stains

Employees in cleaning industries, such as janitorial workers or housekeeping professionals, may come in contact with uncommon stains such as ink or mud. Follow these laundering tips to keep your uniform looking its best:

  • Blood: Rinse the stain immediately with cold water, and then immerse the uniform in room temperature water with a splash of detergent and leave to soak for 10-15 minutes. Spot-treat the stain with household ammonia or an enzyme cleaner if you have one on hand. This is also good advice for how to remove stains from white uniforms. Whether it was coffee or oil, most supermarkets stock an enzyme cleaner or solvent created specifically to break down common stains in white clothes. Unlike dyed or colored fabrics, white can withstand a lot more heavy treatments and won’t show bleach marks or fade over time.
  • Ink: Treatment depends on the material your uniform is made from. If your uniform is cotton, gently blot with rubbing alcohol before washing. If it’s polyester, spray the spot with hairspray and pat dry with a paper towel or cloth. Then wash the item as normal.
  • Mud: Luckily, dirt and mud usually don’t pose major problems for laundry. Soaking the garment in detergent and lukewarm water for 30 minutes should be all it takes to pre-treat. If the stain is severe, rinse and drain the soaking water several times, and then launder and bleach as normal.

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Family owned and operated since 1932, we provide high-quality textile and uniform rental solutions for businesses in the automotive, healthcare, food processing, and critical environments industries. We offer a range of work gear, including protective and high-visibility clothing, with the best possible quality and at a fair price. For more information, contact us today at (800) 767-5536.