POPSUGAR Celebrity

Smart Tips and Tricks For Using Bleach

Jun 30 2014 - 3:05am

We reached out to Mary Gagliardi (aka Dr. Laundry [1]), who joined Clorox [2] as a scientist in laundry product research and development more than 10 years ago, for some real answers about using bleach. She's already shared with us three common mistakes [3] made when using bleach, and how to safely use bleach around the house [4], but what about getting out tricky stains? Dr. Laundry answered a few of our biggest questions:

1. If I have a white shirt with black stripes, how do I wash that? Should I use bleach?

We've all been there — should the shirt get tossed in with the whites or stick with colors? Gagliardi says, "It's always best to wash these items separately until you know for sure the black color won't bleed into the wash water. It's also important to let them air-dry — this is an important step to keep a hot dryer from fading any black or black-and-white item." If the garment is colorfast when washed [5], try using Clorox Smart Seek Bleach [6], which can be used on whites and whites with a little bit of color, like a white shirt with black stripes.

2. Do you have any surprising tips and tricks for getting out stains using bleach?

Dr. Laundry has smart tips for getting rid of tricky marks, from grease to grass stains [7]:

Most importantly, any time you are working on a stained item with bleach, Gagliardi stresses, "always let it air-dry until you know the stain is all the way out! Really stubborn stains (especially stains that have been sitting for a while before washing) may need to be treated twice, and keeping the item out of a hot dryer greatly increases the chance of eventual success!"

Thanks, Dr. Laundry!

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