For over a decade, I had a white couch. And it stayed white, despite parties that saw dark beer, chocolate, and red wine spilled all over it in seemingly endless bids to stain it. My first line of defense was that it was slipcovered, so I would just throw it in the wash anytime one of the aforementioned culprits spilled on it, or when it needed a touch-up. Of course, those dark materials don't usually just wash out without some extra help — and my favorite magic mixture has been what I use for red wine stains.
Years ago, I spilled wine on a new, cream-colored shirt. On some random message board, I found the suggestion: mix one part Dawn liquid soap with one part hydrogen peroxide (this was a long time ago, so I'm fairly sure I Ask Jeeves'd it, but I digress). I really wanted that shirt to survive, so I tried it — and to my shock, every trace of red wine was gone. Since then, I've used this concoction what feels like hundreds of times and always had success with it. I've been passing it to anyone in need, so now it's your turn. Here's how you do it:
- Mix one part Dawn liquid soap with one part hydrogen peroxide. This is specific intentionally! Don't use another soap. Make sure you get the blue stuff. And the size of your stain should dictate how much you should make, but as a starting point, I usually do about a half cup to a half cup.
- Pour the mixture over the stain. Just liberally take a spoon and drizzle it over the stain like it's chocolate fudge. Cover the edges with the stuff. The best way to treat a stain is always immediately, but the truth is, I've let a stain or two simmer overnight because I was "busy." Therefore, I know this stuff works after a stain has had a chance to take hold overnight, but I wouldn't push it much past that.
- Let it sit. Overnight is the ideal amount of time.
- Put through the wash. Now, put your stained-and-mixtured garment in the washing machine and wash and dry as usual.
- Enjoy your clean things! And your wine.