How to Get Rid of Cigarette Burn Marks on Fabric

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Things You'll Need

  • Clothes brush

  • Liquid laundry detergent

  • Washing machine

  • 2 oz. oxygen bleach or chlorine bleach

Cigarette burns can permanently melt synthetic fabrics.

Burning cigarette ashes are capable of scorching fabric fibers and producing dark burn marks on fabric. These burn marks generally result from carelessly flicking cigarette ashes or failure to use an ashtray. Since heat weakens and chars fabric fibers, burns from cigarettes can sometimes cause permanent damage. Mild charring on fabric is generally reparable, but fabric containing actual burn holes is not. Remove minor cigarette burn marks from fabric using common household materials.


Step 1

Brush the burn marks gently with a clothes brush to detach charred material. Remove as much charred material as possible.

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Step 2

Coat the burn marks with liquid laundry detergent. Rub the detergent into the burned fabric to dissolve any burned material. Laundry detergent also acts as a pretreatment.

Step 3

Launder the burned fabric with 2 oz. of liquid laundry detergent. Abide by the particular fabric's care label for the appropriate water setting and washing cycle.

Step 4

Examine the fabric for remaining burn marks. If the burn marks persist, launder the fabric with 2 oz. of oxygen bleach or chlorine bleach, depending on the color of fabric. Colored fabric requires oxygen bleach, while chlorine bleach works best on whites. Use the exact water setting and washing cycle as previously.

Step 5

Lay or hang the fabric to air-dry. Any remaining burn marks in the fabric are permanent.


Spot-test the liquid laundry detergent and bleach (whether oxygen or chlorine) on the burned fabric to prevent damages.


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