Tips for Effective Grass Stain Removal

November 12, 2014 | Grass, posted by Sasha

kids playing with a soccer ball

As much as you love the vivid green color of the grass on your lawn, presumably you don’t love seeing that same color showing up on your clothing after you’ve been outside. Grass stains are made from a mixture of proteins, but mostly they come from the chlorophyll in the plant, which causes a dye stain. Dye stains are pesky and annoying to wash out, but it’s not impossible! Here are some tips for removing grass stains from your clothing.

For starters, treat grass stains as soon as possible. Like most other types of stains, if put through a dryer they will be incredibly difficult to remove. A good way to avoid this is to make a habit of double checking. If you or your family have been spending a lot of time on the lawn, inspect clothing for grass stains before putting them in the wash.

One word of advice before using any new stain removal method: before tackling the stain directly, test the stain removal treatment on a small, inconspicuous area of the garment where it won’t be seen, such as the inside hem. That way, if any bleaching or discoloration occurs, you won’t have ruined the entire garment.

Here’s a simple way to treat grass stains using ingredients you probably already have at home:

1. Pretreat the stain with liquid detergent. Most high-quality detergents contain enzymes that will start breaking down the proteins in the stain.

2. Rinse.

3. Soak the garment in warm water mixed with an all-fabric non-chlorine bleach for at least one hour and rinse again.

4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 until the stain is gone.

When removing grass stains, do not use ammonia or alkaline-based products; these products may actually set the stain and render it nearly impossible to remove. If a clothing item is dry clean only, do not attempt to remove the stain yourself. Take it to the dry cleaner. Similarly, for delicates like silk, check the cleaning instructions on the inside tag beforehand to make sure you don’t accidentally ruin it!

Of course, the most surefire way to rid your life of grass stains is to prevent them from ever happening in the first place! This can be as simple as sitting on blankets instead of the lawn itself or using a gardening pad if you’re working in the yard. If you have children who like to play outside a lot, designate special “activity clothes” that are okay to get dirty. That way, even if they come inside with grass stains, they won’t be a problem for you.