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How to Get Out Holiday Stains

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Hosting a holiday party this year? Instead of being preoccupied with concerns over spills, we partnered with the makers of OxiClean for helpful tips and tricks for tackling stains.

This is the time of year for celebrating, but when hosting, you might be distracted from the festivities by concerns over spills or stains. Skip the worry with this helpful list of bothersome holiday stains and how to treat them — from ones that deserve some serious attention ASAP to those you can let hang out. Following these precautionary tips can also set you up for holiday party success. Cheers to you.

  1. Mud: If you're partying on a slushy night, you're going to find some mud tracks on your carpets. Prepare by putting a fresh welcome mat in front of your door for guests to wipe their feet. If you have wall-to-wall carpeting, you can also put runners over high-traffic areas, which totally saves your rugs. Mud is a stain you can just forget about during the party and then treat the next day. But it's generally an all-over stain, so rent a steam cleaner and follow the manufacturer's directions or spot clean as needed with carpet cleaner.
  2. Red wine: Guess what, it's going to happen, so think strategically. Clear surface areas of clutter so guests have spots for placing glasses, and think about covering rugs or removing them. Red wine is a stain you should tackle as soon as possible, using a clean paper towel to soak up spills when they happen. Keep a bottle of club soda in the fridge and pour over the stain as a pretreatment, neutralizing the wine. Cover with fresh paper towels and leave the stain alone. Then follow up the next day with a mixture of equal parts hydrogen peroxide, dish soap, and water or a versatile, tackles-all-jobs cleaner like OxiClean.


Source: Sarah Lipoff
  1. Guacamole: A festive dip that everyone loves, guacamole leaves surprisingly stubborn stains. Just like with a wine stain, tackle the drama right away, removing any remaining guacamole then cover with warm, soapy water. Dab with a paper towel and leave the stain until the next day. Follow up later with carpet cleaner or a mixture of equal parts hydrogen peroxide, dish soap, and water, then clean up with a fresh rinse of water.
  2. Chocolate: Oh, the sweetness. But chocolate is also a big mess if it gets on your carpets or furniture. It's a stain that you can leave for the time being — unless it's in a spot that might rub off on a guest. When you're ready to deal with the mark, mix together dish soap and cool water and dab over the stain. Avoid using water that's too hot or you'll melt the chocolate and make a bigger mess. Continue working until the stain is gone, then hit the whole area with a cleaner to make sure it's totally erased.
  3. Coffee: Another stain that's OK to leave alone while you're toasting your guests, coffee-stained carpets or furniture can be treated with a tough stain remover with lovely results. Just follow the suggested cleaning tips on the packaging for getting out the stain.
  4. Butter, oil, and fat: Oily stains can be really challenging, so it's smart to spray tablecloths or high-traffic areas with fabric protector to stop drops from sinking in. When you see a grease stain happen, start the cleaning process by sprinkling the area with salt, which absorbs the oil. Then pretreat with a mixture of carpet-friendly cleaner and warm water and toss the item in the wash. If you're dealing with carpets or furniture, follow the first two steps then finish with some oxygenated bleach.

Source: Sarah Lipoff

  1. Cranberry sauce: You guys, this is one stain that's not fun. Cranberries are saturated with colorful pigments that, once ground into your carpet, might not let go of the fibers. This is a stain you can pretreat using a carpet-safe stain remover (with crossed fingers for success), but you might need to call in a pro to operate on this one.
  2. Champagne: Even though this bubbly drink doesn't leave much of a mark, sloshed Champagne does emit a distinct smell for days after the event. And you should get working right after a spill happens. Lift any liquid with a fresh paper towel then sprinkle the area with baking soda, which neutralizes the smell. Vacuum the area the next day for refreshed carpet.

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