How to Get Red Wine Out of Clothes

How to Get Red Wine Out of Clothes

Getting a red wine stain on a dress after a night out is fairly common, but that doesn’t make it any less of an annoying problem!

So, how do you get those dreaded red wine stains out of your clothes without causing too much hassle? Stick with me and I’ll tell you how to do it!

Tips Before You Start Removing Red Wine Stains From Your Clothes

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when removing red wine from your clothes:

  • Try and act as quickly as possible! The faster you act the less chance the red wine has to start embedding itself into your items.
  • It’s better to soak up as much liquid as possible before removing the stain.
  • Rubbing the stain is off-limits. Dabbing or blotting is essential.
  • Test out your chosen method before you use it to remove your red wine stain.
  • Prepare your tools in advance! Don’t waste precious cleaning time by travelling between various rooms looking for cleaning goods – get them ready beforehand and keep them near you as you work.
  • Put gloves, a mask, and eye protection on when cleaning the stain away!
  • Some methods listed below may remove the colour from your clothes, so if you’re concerned about this happening try a different tactic!
  • Always check clothing tags before using any products on them! Some labels specify what cleaning methods should be used/not used.
  • Pop a cloth behind the stain on your clothes as soon as possible, this will prevent the red wine from travelling through to the other side of your clothing. 


How to Get Red Wine Out of Clothes

Removing red wine stains from clothes can seem like a lot of work. But in reality, it’s pretty easy to get a red wine out of clothing! Plus, because clothes are usually smaller, lighter and easier to move around they’re often better to work with. Unlike furniture and carpets that can’t be moved around as easily.

Check out the various methods below, you can use them in any order, and you can try more than one option.

Do keep in mind though that some methods are more suitable for white clothes, if you use these methods on coloured clothes, they may change colour.  

Method 1: Bicarbonate of soda

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Bicarbonate of Soda

What you need:

Steps to take:

  1. Try and blot out as much red wine from your item of clothing. Use a paper towel or a clean cloth to do this.
  2. When you’ve absorbed as much moisture as possible you can start working with the bicarbonate of soda.
  3. In a bowl add one part bicarbonate of soda to three parts of water.
  4. Mix the ingredients together and a paste will form.
  5. If the paste is too runny just add a touch of bicarb until you get a better consistency.
  6. When you’re ready, spread the paste over the red wine stain.
  7. Leave it to rest like this for about 5 minutes.
  8. Grab a clean cloth that has been soaked in some cold water. Wring the cloth so you don’t saturate the stain.
  9. Start blotting at the stained area with the damp cloth.
  10. Continue to do this until the stain has been removed.
  11. You may need to repeat the steps above to remove the whole stain.
  12. When you’re done, just pop your item in the washing machine, and wash it as normal.


Method 2: Lemon and salt

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Salt and Lemon

What you need:

  • Cloths
  • Old towel
  • Salt
  • Lemon
  • Water

Steps to take:

  1. Dab at the red wine stain to absorb as much liquid as you can.
  2. Place your stained item of clothing onto a flat surface. Pop an old towel underneath the item to prevent the stain from travelling further.
  3. Grab some salt and spread it generously over the stain.
  4. Wait a few minutes. During this time the salt will have absorbed the red wine.
  5. OPTIONAL: Squirt some pure lemon onto the stained area. And start blotting at the stain with a clean cloth. Repeat this until you’re happy.
  6. Blot the salt away by using a damp cloth. 
  7. Repeat the method above, if need be.
  8. Wash your item of clothing as normal when you are done.


Method 3: White vinegar and liquid detergent

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Vinegar and Liquid Detergent

What you need:

Steps to take:

  1. Pop your item onto a flat surface with the stain facing upwards. You should put a cloth underneath the item to catch any drips.
  2. Pop a generous amount of white vinegar onto the red wine stain. It will help to neutralize the mark.
  3. Allow it to rest for a few minutes.
  4. Grab some liquid detergent and pop a small amount onto the stain. It will clean the item.
  5. Wait a few more minutes.
  6. You can dab at the stain with a clean damp cloth or wash the item as normal in the washing machine. Use a normal cycle.
  7. You may need to repeat this whole process if the stain is still present.


Method 4: Bleach – white clothing ONLY

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Bleach

NOTE: You should always be careful when using bleach and you should not bleach coloured clothes. You should also work in a ventilated room, wear protective gear, keep kids and pets out of the room and wipe up any spillages along the way.

What you need:

  • Bucket container
  • Stained white clothes
  • Water
  • Bleach
  • Old spoon

Steps to take:

  1. Look at your clothing’s tags to see if you can bleach them. If all is okay, continue with this method.
  2. Grab a bucket or large container.
  3. Place only your stained white items into this bucket.
  4. Fill the bucket/container up with cold water. Make sure the clothes are completely covered by the water.
  5. Add some bleach into the bucket/container. Follow the instructions on the back that tell you how much product to use at any one time.
  6. Agitate the clothes around in the water. Use an old wooden spoon to do this.
  7. Continue to do this for about 10 minutes.
  8. Remove your clothes and rinse them under cold water.
  9. Wash clothes as normal.


Method 5: Hydrogen peroxide and washing up liquid – white clothing ONLY

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Hydrogen Peroxide

NOTE: Hydrogen is a chemical that must be used correctly. Always wear protective gear when using this product and keep children and pets out of the room when working with it. Additionally, hydrogen peroxide is likely to remove the colour from coloured clothes, so only use it on white coloured clothes.

What you need:

Steps to take:

  1. Pop your item of clothing onto a flat surface, with an old towel underneath it to stop further staining.
  2. Grab a bowl and add three parts hydrogen peroxide, to one part washing up liquid into it.
  3. Stir the mix with an old spoon.
  4. Test out this mixture on a hidden part of your clothing. If all works out well, continue with this method.
  5. Spread the mixture out over the red wine stain and allow it to rest like this.
  6. Wait about 30 minutes.
  7. Rinse the item of clothing down in cold water.
  8. Repeat the steps above if need be, or wash your item as normal in the washing machine.


Method 6: Isopropyl alcohol

Remove Red Wine Stains Using Isopropyl alcohol

What you need:

  • Cloths
  • Isopropyl alcohol

Steps to take:

  1. Dab at the stained area for as long as possible and try to remove as much liquid as you can.
  2. When you’ve done this grab some isopropyl alcohol and rub it generously into the red wine mark.
  3. Dab at the area with a clean cloth to soak up any leftover red wine.
  4. Continue to do this until the stain has been removed.
  5. Wash the item of clothing as normal when you’re done.


Method 7: Wash the clothes in the washing machine

Wash the clothes in the washing machine

If you’re lucky enough to be at home when you tip red wine over your clothes, you could just throw them into the washing machine.

Acting this fast may result in your stain removing itself in just one wash cycle.

This method, however, isn’t likely to work on older stains because the wine’s had time to work its way into the fibres of your clothes. But you could still try this if you wanted to.


Method 8: Specialised Stain Removers

In some cases, the easiest option is to use a specialised stain remover to remove red wine from clothing. You’ll be able to browse through and buy many different types of stain removers from your local supermarkets.

Try and keep in mind that stain removers have varied results, and what works with one item of clothing may not work with another. Also, you need to make sure that you can use the specialised stain remover on your item of clothing, because not all products suit all materials.

Remove Red Wine Stain Using Stain Remover

Here are a couple of options to get you started:

  • If you’re looking for a well-known brand to buy from, look no further than Vanish Oxi Advance. This 1 kilogram of concentrated powder formula removes stains with ease, can be used in a 30℃ wash and can be used with both coloured and white clothes – Check it out on
  • If you’ve got white clothes that are covered in red wine, then perhaps you’d prefer to buy a product designed to make white clothes whiter. Vanish Oxi Action Crystal White Powder Fabric Stain Remover can make tough stains disappear, refresh your greying white clothes and it can be used in a washing machine for pre-treatments and for soaking your clothes – Check it out on

Always follow the instructions on the packaging!


Method 9: Professional clothes cleaning services

DIY methods aren’t for everyone, so if you would prefer to get professional help to remove red wine stains from your clothes, you can do so with ease!

All you need to do is find a dry-cleaning company, speak to them, and arrange for your stained clothes to be cleaned.

Here are some places you could try:

Keep in mind that dry cleaning services usually come with a price tag, so be sure to read up on costs before you go ahead with the service. Also, make sure you choose a reputable business.


How Do You Soften Up Tough Old Red Wine Stains?

Old red wine stains are going to be harder to remove because they’ve settled nicely into your clothing’s fibres. But there is actually a clever trick to help soften hard red wine stains on clothes.

If you’ve got a red wine-stained item all you need to do is:

  1. Grab a bowl.
  2. Get an elastic band ready.
  3. Turn your item of clothing inside out. (The water, in essence, will push the red wine back out the way it came in).
  4. Place your stained item of clothing over the bowl. The stain should be facing the inside of the bowl.
  5. Secure the item firmly in place by placing the elastic band around the edge of the bowl.
  6. Make sure that the item is pulled taught.
  7. Boil a kettle full of water.
  8. Pour the boiling water over the red wine stain. The bowl will catch the hot water.
  9. Repeat this process if need be.
  10. The stain should now be nice and soft, and you can start to remove it.


How to Avoid This Kind of Mishap in the Future 

This problem cannot be avoided entirely, but here are a few things to consider:

  • Drink white wine instead! White wine can actually be used to dilute red wine stains and make them easier to deal with.
  • Don’t wear your favourite clothes out if you know you, or someone else is likely to spill something over you. For example, if you know you’re going to be dancing a lot during a night out while drinking red wine, there may be a chance that you’ll spill some wine over your clothes. Or a fellow dancer may bump your drink and it’ll tip over you.
  • Wear dark coloured clothes.
  • Use napkins to cover your clothes and to protect them from spills when you’re sitting down.