How to Stop Color From Bleeding in Laundry

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Things You'll Need

  • Bucket

  • Vinegar

  • 1/2 cup table salt

  • Laundry detergent

  • 1 cup vinegar

Red fabric dye is notorious for causing dye transfer stains.

New clothes with bright colors sometimes bleed fabric dye when they're first washed. When this occurs, other clothing ends up with dye transfer stains which can be difficult to remove. Rather than working to remove a dye transfer stain, you can be proactive and prevent the fabric dye from bleeding in the first place. Home remedies help you to successfully set fabric dye and maintain the colorfastness of clothing while it's being laundered.


Step 1

Fill a bucket one-fourth of the way with white vinegar then the remainder of the way with cool water. Set your clothing in the diluted vinegar solution and allow it to soak for 30 minutes.

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Step 2

Salt helps to set fabric dye.

Wash your garment according to instructions. In addition to using laundry detergent, add 1/2 cup table salt to the wash water to help set the fabric dye color.


Step 3

Pour 1 cup white vinegar into the rinse cycle of your wash machine. Adding the vinegar helps to further prevent color bleeding in the laundry by helping to set the color.


Wash bright colors, such as red garments, together to prevent problems with color dye transfer.

Adding vinegar to the rinse cycle also freshens laundry, softens fabric and prevents static cling.


Should color bleeding occur, do not put the clothing in the dryer as that will set the dye transfer stain.

Treat color bleeding by applying stain remover to the dye and allowing it to sit in the fibers for several minutes before washing.



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