C&J Blog Article


Thrills, spills and household ills!

First things first; before trying any of these remedies, check first on a discreet area to be assured of colour fastness, use distilled water (it’s purer and engages better with additions) and, when working in, use a feathered circular motion to minimise the risk of leaving ring shaped marks. Remember, too, that natural and man made fabrics will absorb - and ultimately release - stains differently. Finally, bear in mind that older stains will be harder to remove and that a little perseverance may be required. Ready? Here goes…




It pains us to think of any ‘amber liquid’ being wasted! However, if faced with a dropped dram on carpet or upholstery, dab first with a 90% water/10% vinegar solution, dry residue with tissue and rinse with warm water. This process effectively flushes the booze away. If treating a dried in spill, add a splash of wool detergent to the water and follow the same practice.




We wont even ask how you got lippy on the carpet (or, for that matter, the sofa) but we can help with its removal. First, rub some petroleum jelly into the mark and leave for ten minutes. Next, add a drop of ammonia to warm soapy water, rub the stain with a cloth, rinse with pure water and pat dry with tissue.


Nail polish


Dip a clean cloth in methylated spirits and wipe the spot gently until the offending polish begins to lift. Repeat, as necessary, then rinse clean. For particularly persistent nail varnish stains, rub with a little acetone and - before dry - wash clean with a wet cloth.



This is a devil to remove, particularly when the stain is older, but it CAN be done. If fresh, mix 15g of Sodium Borate (Borax) with 250ml’s of hand hot water, wet a cloth and work in till the mark fades. If necessary rinse the cloth clean, pat the affected area dry and repeat the whole process.




Use the same technique as above but reduce the Borax quantity to 5g’s mixed into 500ml’s of hand hot water.


Fruit juice


If treated quickly, this is relatively easy to banish. Add a splash of white vinegar to warm water, sponge the affected area then rinse in clean, warm water. For darker juices such as blackberry, add a more generous splash of vinegar.


Red Wine


This isn’t the disaster you might think it is although the quicker you address the problem the better. Dab with tissue to remove the worst of the stain, sprinkle with talcum powder, press into the surface and then remove with a spatula. Next, apply glycerine on a cloth, let settle for half an hour, rinse with soapy water and dab clean with a wet cloth.


Egg white


Scrape off excess, then wash away residue with salt water - one cup of water and three teaspoons of salt make an ideal saline solution. Finally, rinse with clear warm water and pat dry with tissue.


Egg yolk


Because of the fat in yolk, we recommend adding a splash of wool detergent to the above spell and washing until the yellow hue disappears.




Just like egg yolk chocolate contains fat. This in mind, remove excess with a spatula and treat as above. If the stain is particularly stubborn or affects an area that can be treated remotely (like a cushion cover) position atop a waterproof container and pour a 30g washing soda/one pint water solution over the fabric. Repeat the process a couple of times, rinse in warm water and allow to dry.




If the offending ‘coo juice’ is fresh, use warm soapy water to dilute, rinse and dab dry with tissue. If the stain is older and therefore ‘set’, it’ll help if you add a little borax to the water as you clean.


Butter or margarine


Treating marks such as these with a dash of white spirit should ease the problem Apply with a cloth, then rinse away the oily residue with warm water.


Chewing gum


This potentially sticky situation can be fixed with a few simple steps. If the offending gum has already hardened, apply a little egg white to soften, then pull off excess. The residue can then be sponged away with a soapy solution and rinsed clean.

Another tried and tested removal method is to pack ice around the gum so it solidifies, thereby making it easy to chip off.


Fountain pen ink


Moisten the damaged area with tepid water then apply a paste of lemon juice and salt. Let sit for twenty minutes, rinse and pat dry with tissue.


Felt tip pen


Remove excess with a tiny drop of methylated spirits applied on a clean cloth, wash with soapy water, rinse with warm water and leave to air dry.


Ballpoint pen


Perhaps the trickiest ink to remove but not impossible. Treat as for felt tip pen damage but, if the stain persists, dip a cotton bud in acetone, dab the problem area then simply wash through with warm water.


Candle wax


This is a tried and tested means with which to cure crisis. Place brown wrapping paper over the problem (matt side down) heat with a warm iron and watch as the wax is absorbed by the paper. You may need to repeat the process but, as it’s so effective, it’s worth persevering.




The bane of every sport Mom’s life, the green peril is notoriously tricky. That said, there is hope. Remove the worst of the problem by washing with wool detergent and water, then wipe with methylated spirits and rinse clean. Stubborn traces can be treated with Eucalyptus oil. Apply with a cloth using a ‘lifting’ motion until the grass is completely conquered.




A doddle to remove as long as the soil isn’t mixed with oil or other residues. First clean the mark with warm water (adding a spot of glycerine will improve efficacy) then rinse with cool clean water.



This can normally be cleaned with a saline solution if, that is, the problem area doesn’t resemble a particularly messy True Blood scene. Mix two table spoons of salt into a pint of cold water and sponge a little at a time onto the affected area until the mark begins to fade. Rinse with fresh water and repeat as required.


So there you have it; problem solving courtesy of tried and tested Scottish ingenuity!  Try 'em and save your dosh.  Store bought products aren't always the best remedy!

Colin and JJustin, Stain Warriors x


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