How to Remove Oily Stains
It's here: Our game-changing guide to everyone's favorite room in the house. Your Do-Anything Kitchen gathers the smartest ideas and savviest tricks—from our community, test kitchen, and cooks we love—to help transform your space into its best self.Grab your copy
Popular on Food52
Agnes A. December 3, 2017
Plain old shampoo (without added conditioners) is the best. I've used this many times when traveling, and now use it at home. Just dab the shampoo onto the oily stain, wait 15 minutes, then wash as usual (warm water is best).
connie S. October 30, 2017
Stay away from Scotchguard.....this chemical is already in wide use on textiles and food paper coatings and is in the blood of newborn babies and in polar bears at the north pole.....PFOS is a substance that has been proven a carcinagin, even in small amounts. read the article that juzybcn (below) has a link to-for your knowledge.
Audrey W. October 29, 2017
For red wine or berry stains in washable fabrics, I place the stained area tightly over a mesh strainer and pour boiling water over the stain. It disappears before my eyes.
juzybcn August 15, 2017
Careful with recommending Scotchguard: http://www.chemicalindustryarchives.org/dirtysecrets/scotchgard/1.asp
sue W. July 18, 2016
For oily stains, try pretreating stain with Lestoil all purpose cleaner then immediately launder as usual
Ahuvah B. June 16, 2014
Old dried oil stained clothing? Use Dawn dishwashing soap and place a dollup on the stain then rub the soap into the garment. Sometimes you might want to use a brush (I use a toothbrush). Rub the soap in for a minute or two and then pour white vinegar on top of the soap. Wash the garment like normal and repeat 1-3x if necessary.
ntt2 January 26, 2014
I have a related question - any wisdom on fading old stains on vintage linens?
Sue January 17, 2014
shampoo rubbed into the stain before laundering works as well. Has gotten out old previously laundered stains as well as new.
Franziska January 11, 2014
Any normal dishwashing detergent. Doesn't have to be a specific brand. Put some onto the stain and into the washing machine with it. Works every time.
gigiaxline January 11, 2014
Dawn dish detergent rubbed directly on the fabric before laundering...it even gets out old stains (once I found out about Dawn I tested on some of my old favorite tee shirts I couldn't bear to throw out).
Paul @. January 25, 2014
Dawn has worked very well for me as well, much better than pre-treating with laundry detergent, shout or oxy clean. I know they also donate it for use on animals affected by oil spills too!
See what other Food52 readers are saying.