How to Clean Stains From Silk

Silk, whether on your sheets or clothing, will look beautiful and last for years to come if taken care of properly. Silk must be handled with care, without a lot of rubbing and scrubbing. Stains on your silk can be successfully removed using a few basic products and some gentle agitation. The sooner you tend to a stain on silk fabric, the easier the removal process will be as you can often remove a fresh stain from silk by flushing the fabric right away with cold water.

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Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • 1/2 tsp. fine washables detergent
  • Glycerin
  • Bowl
  • Ammonia
  • Cotton ball or swab
  • Fill a bucket with cold water and add 1/2 tsp. fine washables detergent. Begin your stain removal process by soaking your stained silk garment in the soapy solution for 15 minutes. Vigorously dunk the silk up and down in the bucket of water for two to three minutes to agitate the silk fibers and loosen the stain.

  • Pour fine washables detergent on the remnants of the stain on your silk fabric. Use enough to cover the stain, then gently rub the detergent into the silk and allow it to sit for 15 minutes. Flush your silk garment with cold water to remove the detergent and stain.

  • Tackle food or grease stains remaining on your silk garment by pouring glycerin onto the site of the stain. Rub the glycerin into the fabric and allow it to sit for 15 minutes before flushing it with cold water.

  • Saturate a perspiration or makeup stain with a solution made from one part ammonia and three parts cold water mixed in a bowl. Blot the stain with a cotton ball or cotton swab dipped in the ammonia solution. Rinse the ammonia from your silk garment using cold water.

  • Wash your silk garment, by hand, using fine washables detergent and cold water. Rinse the garment well and hang it to dry.

Tips & Warnings

  • When in doubt, take your stained silk garment to the dry cleaners, as soon as possible.
  • Avoid using bleach products on silk fabric as it will cause permanent discoloration.


  • Photo Credit clothes image by Zbigniew Nowak from robinet image by razorconcept from
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