Blackberries are one of the best things about late summer and early autumn. Being able to pick your own and then turn them into anything from crumble to jam is a great way to spend your time.
But inevitably, someone will get some blackberry juice on themselves. Worse yet, blackberries might get dropped on the carpet or couch. Anyone who’s eaten blackberries will know they stain, so what can you do about it?
In this article, we’ll look at how to get blackberry stains out. There are solutions for clothing, carpets and upholstery, so read on to find out more.
Why Do Blackberries Stain?
Blackberries are very rich in a natural pigment that comes from a component called anthocyanin.
It’s found in pretty much any red, blue or purple food. The colour depends on the pH level.
Another important point is that blackberries contain a lot of water (around 88% of their volume).
As you may already know, the pigment-rich berry juice can get everywhere if the blackberries are very ripe, and it’s pretty good at staining things too.
How to Get Blackberry Stains Out of Clothes
We’ll start with how to get blackberry stains out of clothes, as this is the most likely thing you’ll stain.
Whether it’s the clothes you wore to pick blackberries or the apron you wore while baking, clothes are perhaps the easiest item to remove stains from.
Try the options below, as at least one should work.
Wash with stain remover
The most obvious place to start is by washing the item with a stain-removing detergent.
This should work if it’s a fairly fresh or small stain, and will produce better results on darker fabrics, simply because the stain will be less obvious.
Just wash your clothes with a stain-removing detergent like Ariel on the highest temperature setting the clothes can take.
For cotton, this should be 90 degrees Celsius. Less resilient fabrics might only tolerate 60 degrees.
Always check the care label first, and don’t wash at a higher temperature than it recommends.
Flush with hot water
If the blackberry stain is quite obvious, you’ll want to try and remove as much as possible before you wash the clothes. To do this, you can try flushing it with hot water using the following method:
- Fill your kettle with water and put it to boil.
- Blot the blackberry stain with a damp cloth, being careful not to press too hard.
- Turn the clothing inside out and place a bowl inside. Put the stained part over the bowl and pull the item fairly tight.
- Hold the kettle over the stain and pour in a steady stream.
- If the stain hasn’t shifted, repeat the method as many times as necessary.
Once you’ve shifted the stain as much as you can, wash with a stain-removing detergent. Ideally, don’t let the stained area dry first.
Soak in white vinegar
The flushing method above should work, but if it’s not giving the results you want, try soaking the item in white vinegar.
Mix 50 ml of white vinegar into about a litre of water. Put the stained area in a bowl and cover with the solution.
You can soak the whole item, but only soaking the affected area reduces the risk of pigment transferring.
Leave it to soak for at least an hour, but the longer the better. Then, wash in the washing machine and hopefully the stain should be gone.
How to Get Blackberry Stains Out of Carpet
Carpet presents a unique problem when trying to remove stains. We obviously can’t wash the stained area in the same way, so we need to try some different cleaning methods.
Spot cleaning with washing up liquid
The first option is to try removing the stain using washing up liquid. Provided the stain is fresh, this should work fairly well.
- Mix a teaspoon of washing up liquid with around 100 ml of water.
- Spray this onto the stained area with a spritzer, or pour a very small amount on the stain.
- Blot the stain with a clean, dry cloth.
- Put a few paper towels over the stained area and weigh them down with a stack of books. Leave for 30 minutes or so.
This should help draw out the stain, leaving your carpet as good as new. You might not have as much luck with a dried-on blackberry stain, but this is still a place to start.
Clean with oxygen-based bleach
Oxygen-based bleach is a heavy-duty stain remover that works wonders on clothes. You can use it on carpet, but be careful using it on colours.
Even colour-safe products can cause some dye from the fabric to lift. If you’re unsure, test some in a hidden area before trying it on the stain.
Mix some oxygen bleach in a bowl with cool water, following the package’s instructions.
Wearing gloves, dunk a clean sponge in the solution and blot onto the stained area. Work it in using small circular motions, refreshing your sponge as needed.
Leave the bleach for 30 minutes or so and then blot it out using a clean damp cloth. Let the carpet dry, and the stain should be gone.
Using heavy-duty stain remover
If you want to skip all the methods above and go straight for the heavy-duty products, an upholstery stain remover will be your best bet. Something like HG Stain Remover is designed for this job, and it does it well.
Make sure you follow the instructions carefully, and always spot test somewhere out of the way. Choose a product that’s suitable for the fabric you’re working with and it should be fine.
How to Get Blackberry Stains Out of a Couch
Finally, we’ve got couches and other upholstered furniture. This shouldn’t be too difficult because the options above will work fine. Which method you use will depend on where the stain is.
If it’s on a cushion cover or similar, any of the cleaning methods for clothes will work fine.
You can usually remove cushion covers, meaning you can put them in the washing machine. This’ll be the best way to remove a stain because you have more flexibility over cleaning products.
But if the stain is on a non-removable section of fabric, try the options for carpets. Couch fabric is usually pretty resilient, meaning it can take quite heavy cleaning.
Either way, you shouldn’t have much difficulty getting a blackberry stain out of a couch.
As you can see, there are quite a few options for getting blackberry stains out of clothes, carpets and couches. One of the methods above should get the job done, even if it takes a few tries.
However, if all else fails, find a professional to do it for you. Carpet and upholstery cleaners usually have some pretty heavy-duty products that’ll zap stains, and dry cleaners can do the same for your clothes. With a bit of persistence, you’ll get rid of that blackberry stain!
Jacob is a freelance writer based in Wales, where he lives with his partner and two dogs. All his work is fuelled by extensive research and buckets of coffee.