How to Get Tack Out of Clothes

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Tack is a type of sticky adhesive often used in home repair and craft projects. Much like gum, it has a sticky texture that makes it easy for the tack to adhere to fabric and can be hard to remove. The trick to removing sticky substances like tack is to dissolve it or reduce its stickiness so it can be manually removed. Many of the same cleaning methods for removing gum also work on removing tack.

Things You'll Need

  • Butter knife
  • Cotton ball
  • Vegetable oil
  • Laundry detergent
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Vinegar
  • Metal pot
  • Clean cloth

Step 1

Place the clothing in the freezer to harden the tack and make it easier to remove. Once it is frozen, scrape the tack off with your fingernail or a butter knife. Dab any remaining tack with a cotton ball dipped in vegetable oil to dissolve it. Wash the clothing in laundry detergent and warm water to remove the oil.

Step 2

Dab the tack with a lubricant such as petroleum jelly to dissolve it. Scrape off the remaining tack with a dull butter knife. Dab any remaining stains with a cotton ball soaked in rubbing alcohol and wash the clothing item in hot water and laundry detergent.

Step 3

Apply liquid laundry detergent directly to the tack and let it soak for 30 minutes. Wash the clothing item in hot water to remove the tack.

Step 4

Heat 1/2 cup of vinegar in a metal pot. Dip a clean cloth in the hot vinegar and dab the tack with the cloth until the tack dissolves and comes off the fabric. Wash the clothing item in laundry detergent and hot water to remove any leftover residue.

Step 5

Boil a pot of water. Place the clothing in the boiling water and let it soak at least 15 minutes. Gently scrape the tack off with a butter knife.

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