How to Remove Tea Stains from Paper

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Tea stains can be difficult to remove
Tea stains can be difficult to remove (Image: cup of tea image by Daria Miroshnikova from Fotolia.com)

Removing tea stains from paper isn't easy, and the methods for removing them can make you think twice about even attempting it. Use time-tested methods that are safe and effective and supplies from home to remove tea stains from your paper. Even old stains can be removed, restoring older documents to a much better condition.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring cups
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Water
  • Bowl
  • Calcium hydroxide
  • Distilled water
  • Paper towels
  • Bleach
  • Toothbrush
  • Wax paper
  • Iron

Mix 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide with 1/2 cup water in a bowl large enough to fit the tea-stained paper. Keep the paper in the solution long enough to soak thoroughly, without allowing the liquid to wick too far into the paper.

A wide bowl works best for washing paper
A wide bowl works best for washing paper (Image: bowl image by dinostock from Fotolia.com)

Rinse your paper in a mixture of 1/2 cup calcium hydroxide and 1/2 cup distilled water. The calcium hydroxide solution helps to remove acidity from the paper.

Blot the paper thoroughly using paper towels. Place one layer of paper towels under the piece of paper and another layer on top. Use your hands to apply pressure to transfer the moisture from the paper to the paper towels. Switch to dry paper towels and continue to blot until there's no further transfer of moisture to the paper towels.

Paper towels help wick out moisture.
Paper towels help wick out moisture. (Image: toilettenpapier image by victoria p. from Fotolia.com)

Mix one part bleach and two parts water. If any traces of tea stain remain on the paper, scrub the paper with this solution, using an old, but clean, toothbrush. Use a very light scrubbing motion to avoid ripping the paper. Remove the liquid from the paper by blotting with paper towels.

Old toothbrushes come in handy for many cleaning tasks
Old toothbrushes come in handy for many cleaning tasks (Image: toothbrush image by Nicola Gavin from Fotolia.com)

Lay a piece of wax paper between papers, if you're dealing with more than one piece of paper. Press gently using an iron on a low to medium setting. Ironing will help smooth and flatten out wrinkles or rippling caused by the moisture from the stain.

Use an iron to press paper
Use an iron to press paper (Image: iron image by Eray Haciosmanoglu from Fotolia.com)

Tips & Warnings

  • Supervise children and pets when using bleaching solutions for stain removal.

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