Sometimes in our haste to get out the door or our zeal to hug a good friend, we end up with makeup smudged or smeared on our clothing. But don’t fret! Removing the stains can be as easy as 1,2,3. Much of makeup removal is about the technique. Blot. Dab. Lift. But whatever you do, don’t rub! You risk not only spreading the stain, but also damaging the fabric or material.
Tale of the Tape
A simple strip of tape can sometimes lift away an offending makeup mark. Use a dabbing motion and be sure to use a clean swath of tape with each dab. Lipsticks or powders respond well to tape since they tend to sit on top of fabric instead of soaking in. Tape is also a great, quick fix option for dry clean only items, when you don’t have time for a professional cleaning.
Many laundry detergent and stain remover brands make easy-to-use pens for on-the-go emergencies. A few swipes of the pen can miraculously fade makeup mishaps. These pens also multi-task, doubling as a pre-wash treatment to ensure the stain doesn’t set in. This pre-treatment will also make your garment laundry-ready, no soaking required. Be sure to use a non-chlorine bleach pen on colored garments.
Baby wipes not only get sticky fingers clean but also work wonders on removing pesky makeup stains. Dab and lift the stain, alternating with a dry cloth or paper towel. Use a clean section of wipe with each dab. Makeup remover wipes can also suit the same purpose. Keep a small package stowed in your handbag for quick touch-ups.
Speaking of makeup remover, a careful drop of makeup remover can help whisk your stain right away. Make sure it’s oil-free or you may end up with a whole new worry. For nail polish whoops, nail polish remover is your savior. For best results, dab from the outside to the center of the spot. Always follow with a clean cloth to lift away the stain.
Beyond makeup remover, you can also try dish detergent, shampoo or even shaving cream to break apart a stain. The astringent properties work to bust the oils in lipsticks and foundations. To use, mix a drop of solution with water and dab on the spot. Lift the stain with a clean damp cloth. While you finish getting ready, let the spot air dry first, then you can hit the wet area with your hairdryer for a speed dry.
Before you use any product on any garment, consider this: Test your stain-busting solution in an inconspicuous spot to ensure it won’t adversely affect the color or fabric. And whatever you do, don’t put your stained garment in the dryer (or use your hairdryer) unless you are absolutely positive the spot is completely gone. You risk setting the stain permanently. Let it air dry first to be sure.
Those white telltale deodorant stripes seem to be so tricky to remove. We’ve all tried water on the marks, to no avail. Did you know you can simply blend away the marks by rubbing the stain against a clean section of your garment to gently disperse the streak? And what about toothpaste stains? Those white spots never seem to fade with water alone. Try dabbing stain remover or water with a few drops of detergent on the spot. Blot with water to finish.