It has happened to all of us. Slipping that favorite top or dress on overhead, pulling it down only to find makeup all over it.
As a stylist I have this problem ALL the dang time especially on mens dress shirt collars (thanks over eager makeup artists).
Makeup can be tricky to remove especially if it’s oil based, the key is knowing what type of stain you are dealing with and having a lightening fast response time. If makeup stains are handled quickly, then the fabric won’t have enough time to fully absorb the stains. The longer the stain remains the tougher it will be to remove so these pre-treatments are key!
Two of the biggest makeup offenders to clothing are Foundation and Lipstick.
Removing Foundation from Clothing
This one is actually pretty simple.
Check the label and determine whether your foundation is oil-free or oil-based.
If it’s oil-free, lather on a thick layer of shaving cream, yep shaving cream (it MUST be shaving CREAM not shaving GEL) and let it sit for about 15 minutes before wiping off the suds. If the foundation is oil-based, complete the same process using dish detergent instead of shaving cream. Toss it in the washer and BAM! Foundation is gone! Both pre-treatments will remove makeup residue, leaving the fabric way easier to clean.
(This is for washable clothing- If your clothing is Dry-Clean Only skip to the Dry Clean Only Method)
Removing Lipstick Stains from Clothing
Here’s the biggest problem with lipstick stains, unlike most other kinds of stains, which tend to fall neatly into “stain type” categories like ‘protein’ (sweat, blood, dairy) or ‘tannin’ (tea, coffee, red wine), lipstick is a combination stain. Today’s lipsticks are made from colors and chemicals that are made to last LONGER which is great for your lips but really bad for accidents on clothing! They are waxy, oily AND brightly colored, making them tough to clean and almost impossible to hide. (Remember to check your clothing label, if your clothing is Dry-Clean Only skip to the Dry Clean Only Method).
Start by taking a piece of tape and adhering it to the stain then pull it off. This will grab any excess build up that is sitting on the surface- do this a couple times.
Because lipstick stains are oily, you need to use cleaners that fight grease. A grease fighting liquid soap like Dawn dish soap will work wonders. Spritz the stain with clean water, but don’t soak the fabric. Drop a small amount of dish soap onto the area then gently blot it into the stain. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Make sure to apply to BOTH sides of the stain. Finish by dabbing the section of fabric clean with a dry towel, and if the stain isn’t completely removed, repeat the process as necessary then launder as normal.
Rubbing alcohol is another great way to remove lipstick but be VERY Careful on which types of fabric you use it on! They need to be rugged cottons or denim, nothing delicate! Dab the rubbing alcohol on the stain using a white rag or cotton ball, repeating as necessary until the stain is gone entirely then launder as normal.
Makeup and Dry Clean Only Pieces
For Dry Clean Only clothing try pre-treating the stain with Dryel On The Go Stain Remover. It safely remove the mess from dry clean only clothing WITHOUT leaving a ring. I have found that other brands of stain removing pens leave a really bad ring on delicate clothing.
Dryel On the Go is perfect for when you can’t make it to the dry cleaners right away, this instant stain remover works great on wools, silks, rayons, linens, cottons, and dry clean-only clothes, delicates, and hand washables. The soft touch applicator is gentle – and the scrubber works like an eraser to eliminate your stains.