Cooking oils are the basis of any tasty dish, which means you'll be using them a lot. Even a tiny drop of any cooking oil on your clothing will leave a nasty stain, and these stains can be a chore to remove -- oil doesn't mix well with water, so just scrubbing the stain with water won't do anything, and could potentially make it worse. Worry not! We've found some methods to effectively remove oil stains that will work even if you don't notice the stain right and it dries up.

Dish Soap

a selection of dish soaps

Dish soap contains chemicals that fight grease and can be safely applied to your clothes. Dish soap can be an effective stain remover when the stain is wet or dry -- simply apply a few drops of dish soap and rub the soap into the stain gently. Let it sit with the soap for a few hours, and then wash the piece of clothing in a washing machine on the cycle with the hottest water. After washing the article of clothing let it air dry -- this should remove any oil stains.

WD-40 And Baking Soda

wd-40 spray in a row

This method requires a much more hands-on approach but the effects are more than worth it.

You'll need:

  • WD-40 Spray
  • Toothbrush
  • Baking soda
  • Dish soap

How To Do It:

  • Spray the WD-40 on the stain.
  • Pour baking soda onto the stain and scrub the baking soda into the stain with toothbrush. Don't worry about being too generous with the baking soda.
  • After scrubbing the baking soda with the toothbrush, add a few drops of dish soap. Continue scrubbing with the toothbrush.
  • Let the clothing sit for an hour, and then wash as you normally would. The stain should be removed.

Baking Soda And An Iron

ironing a dress shirt

Oil stains can be removed when heated, so using baking soda and a clothing iron can do wonders for you. Place a generous amount of baking soda on the stained area and use a toothbrush to rub it in. Place a rag on your ironing board and then place the clothing with the stain side down on the ironing board. Iron the stained area with the hot iron and the stain should be removed.


dove hairspray on a shelf

Alcohol is an effective way to break up oil stains, and the alcohol content in hairspray makes this spray a wonderful way to fight stains. Give the stain a generous amount of hairspray and then blot up the wetness with a paper towel. After this, just wash the clothing in hot water and air dry it for a quick, easy stain removal.

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