How to Remove Color Run Stains


When new clothes get wet, the colors often bleed and run onto other garments. This can occur when it’s raining outside or in the washing machine. When colors run in the washing machine, many other garments will be affected by the color bleed. It’s also common for colored trim on clothing to bleed onto the other sections of the garment. Color run stains can be difficult to remove.

How to Remove Color Run Stains
(Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media)

Things You'll Need

  • Washing machine
  • Laundry detergent
  • 5-gallon bucket
  • Water
  • Washing soda
  • Dye remover
  • Liquid bleach
Step 1

Wash or re-wash the garment immediately in the washing machine, using laundry detergent and warm or hot water. Before dye dries completely, it can usually be washed off because it has not yet set.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media
Step 2

Fill a 5-gallon bucket with cold water and add 1 cup of washing soda. Soak the garment in this solution for an hour.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media
Step 3

Transfer the garment from the bucket to your washing machine. Add dye remover powder to the washing machine.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media
Step 4

Run the washing machine on permanent press, using warm water.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media
Step 5

Place the garment in a 5-gallon bucket again. Fill the bucket with cool water and add 2 capfuls of liquid bleach. Allow the garment to sit overnight in the solution.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media
Step 6

Machine-wash the garment with laundry detergent, using the permanent-press setting on your washing machine and warm water.

Maryurys Connolly/Demand Media

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Tips & Warnings

  • If the label on your garment says dry-clean only, take it to your dry cleaner immediately after the stain occurs.


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