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How to get rid of bleach stains on clothes

Bleach is the hero of many a household battle. Whether you need to get rid of black mould patches in the bathroom, spruce up your white trainers, or clean your kitchen sink: bleach will help you out. But when you’re scrubbing away feverishly, it’s easy to miss that splash of bleach on your jeans. 

So, can you get rid of bleach stains on clothes? Yes – if you know a few clever tricks. Let’s see...

How to get rid of bleach stains on clothes

Before we start, you should know that bleach stains aren’t really stains at all. Instead of leaving marks, bleach actually takes the colour out fabric, leaving you with white, dye-free patches on your clothes. This means that bleach stains can’t simply be washed or scrubbed out, but what you can do is cover them up. Just choose one of the bleach stain removal methods below:

  1. Pure alcohol. If you’re wondering how to get rid of bleach stains on black clothes, pure alcohol is probably your best bet. Soak a cotton pad in a bit of alcohol and then gently rub the bleach stain. Soon the clothing dye around the stain will start to spread out and fill in the gap. 
  2. Fabric marker. Permanent fabric markers can be used to colour in bleach stains – just find one that matches the colour of your garment.

    Important: Check the packaging of the permanent marker to make sure that it is suitable for your garment before using it. Find out if the ink is washing machine safe too – if not, hand wash the garment from now on.
  3. Fabric dye: Sometimes, it’s easier to simply re-dye the entire garment. First, you’ll need to draw out its original colour using a colour remover. Once the colour remover has stripped out all the original dye, you can re-dye the garment any colour you like. Read the product labels on the colour remover and the dye for instructions before you start.

    Colour removal products can be pretty strong, so it’s a good idea to wear gloves when you use them, and work in a well-ventilated room as well. Keep it (and all laundry products) at a safe distance from any curious little ones. 

Important: Always test new bleach stain removal methods on a covered area of the fabric first, and carefully follow the instructions on the garment’s care label, too. 


Avoiding the need for bleach stain removal

Even if you know how to remove bleach stains, it’s still better to avoid them. Here are a few handy tricks to help you keep your clothes (and skin) safe from bleach: 

  • First of all, always read the instructions on the bottle before you start using it.
  • Before you start cleaning with bleach, make sure you’re wearing durable, light-coloured clothing. If possible, wear an old t-shirt that you wouldn’t mind getting stained, or something protective, like an apron. 
  • Never use bleach without wearing rubber gloves – it’s a powerful product, and is just as tough on your skin as it is on dirt and grime. So always remember to protect your hands.  
  • Cleaning products that contain bleach can be just as strong. Always check out the packaging when using a new product, and follow any safety guidelines to the letter.
  • Only ever mix bleach with water – mixing bleach with other products could create toxic gas! 
  • Always keep bleach well out of the reach of children and pets.


Now that you know how to remove bleach stains, you can finish your cleaning with no interruptions – and quickly move on to more enjoyable things!

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