“The stain fighters in you home…” 2nd – “Absorbents, which are powders or granules such as cornstarch or fuller’s earn, are used to soak up liquid and oily stains from permeable surface–fabrics, unfinished wood, and carpet, for example.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 42)

“The stain fighters in you home…” 1st – “Abrasives, such as baking soda and salt, are used to scrub and scour stains off of surfaces. They’re most useful for stain removal on hard, mostly impervious surfaces.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 42 )

“Test before you treat. …try out any new stain solution in a hidden or inconspicuous spot first. …Here’ how to test: 1. Choose a secure location. On clothing, consider the hem or seam allowances…or beneath a flap covering a zipper. Choose locations under the cushions of upholstered furniture. For carpets or flooring, use the floor inside a closet, under a piece of furniture, or in the corner behind the door. 2. Put several drops of the cleaning solution on the test site. 3. Moisten a clean white cloth with water, and press it against the test spot for one minute. 4. Check the cloth for any signs of color transferring from the surface; check the surface for signs of color changes or other damage. If any negative effects are evident, try a different stain-treatment method. Clear the removal solution from the test area using the same method recommended when applying it to stains.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 35)

“Take a Thougtful Approach to Solving Stains. When a stain happens, it’s tempting to toss on a treatment and get back to whatever you were doing. But that can be a recipe for disaster (and lead to lasting damage), especially if you’re trying a new stain-removal method on a visible location–the lapel of your favorite jacket or the middle of the living room rug, for example. Acting in haste can do more harm than good if the treatment you apply sets the stain instead of removing it, or takes out the color in your carpet along with the stain. In most staining situations, what you should do quickly is contain and soak up liquid spills and gently scrape up solid and semi-solid materials.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 34)

“Don’t spread it around. It’s all too easy, in the excitement of a spill, to accidentally drip spilled liquid from blotting cloths across the carpet or to smear the spaghettti sauce beyond the margins of the original spot. As you scrape, lift, and/or blot, work from the outer edges of a stain inward to the center to avoid making a bigger stain. Do the same when you apply water or cleaning solutions–your goal is to make the stain smaller, then to make it vanish entirely. Don’t work against yourself.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 33)

“Do consider seeking professional help. A stain that’s relavtively easy to remove from washable fabric may require a much different treatment on a dryclean-only garment. Stains on upholstery, too, may require professional treatment, especially if the upholstery fabric is not meant to be cleaned with water.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin (page 33)

“Do meet the maker. If the stain in question was caused by a product, you may find that the best treatment recommendations come from the product’s manufacturer. Start with the product label–it may tell you everything you need to know. In the absence of that information on the label (or in the absence of a label), visit the manufacturer’s website, or give its customer service department a call. Responsible manufacturers of products with high potential for causing stains (think glues, paints, and children’s art supplies) have become quite sophisticated at providing this type of information.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin

Do bring in “back-up.” When treating stains on fabrics, always place an absorbent pad under the stain to soak up the staining material and soiled cleaning solution as it moves out of the fabric. If you don’t make a habit of doing this, you run the risk of removing a stain from one part of a garment and sponging it onto another. Refold or replace the pad frequently to keep the stain from reapplying to the surface you’re treating. Clean, light-colored towels and washcloths work very well for this, as do cloth diapers. Nearly any absorbent cloth will do, as long as it’s clean and colorfast. You can also make a pad with several layers of white paper toweling. It makes sense to keep a supply of clean, light-colored cloths or rags on hand for this purpose.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin


“Don’t rub it in. When a staining agent gets on an item, the goal is to remove it, ideally before it leaves a stain. Avoid the urge to wipe, rub, or otherwise press on solid and semi-solid spills; you’ll only force them into the surface they’re trying to stain, and you’ll be left trying to force them back out. With a lifting motion, wield a spoon, a dull knife, a spatula, or even a credit card to carefully scrape the spill off your stuff. Whatever the stain is made of, it’ll be so much easier to remove completely if you keep it superficial.”
From “Natural Stain Removal Secrets” by Deborah L. Martin

“Do use a light touch. It’s tempting to put some muscle into your stain-removal efforts, trying to rub and scrub at a spot until it’s driven away by force. A heavy hand on all but the sturdiest surfaces, however, can cause damage that remains even after the stain is gone. Rubbing fabrics (including carpet and upholstery) frays the fibers and makes them “fuzz up.” You may remove the stain, but you’ll likely leave behind damaged fibers that stand out nearly as much. Such fibers are not only prone to collecting dirt, but they’re also likely to wear out more quickly and make a hole.”
From ‘Natural Stain Removal Secrets’ by Deborah L. Martin


“Do get under the stain. It’s not always possible, but when you can, work from the underside of a spot on fabric. Assuming the stain landed on the outside of the fabric, treating it from the underside helps to push it off the surface instead of pushing it through. This lessens the chance that the stain will settle into the fabric’s fibers and also reduces the likelihood that you’ll abrade the surface of the fabric by rubbing the stained area. Simply lay your garment stain side down on a cloth pad, and treat from beneath.”
From ‘Natural Stain Removal Secrets’ by Deborah L. Martin

“Do keep dry spills dry and wet spills wet. Imagine shampooing a heavily soiled carpet without first vacuuming it thoroughly to pick up the loose dirt. In a very short time, you’d have a wet, muddy mess, and the cleaning solution would only serve to drive the soil deeper into the carpet fibers. Don’t put a drop of liquid on a dry spill (or mark) until you’ve vacuumed, shaken, brushed, or blown away every particle you possibly can. Then–and only then–should you consider using a liquid treatment to remove any dye transfer.
As for keeping wet stains wet, remember that like dissolves likes. If liquid carried the stain onto the surface, it’s likely that liquid will carry it off. Drying a liquid stain only take away its transportation and leaves the dyes and solid materials to cling tightly to your stuff.”
From ‘Natural Stain Removal Secrets’ by Deborah L. Martin

“Beware the Bathroom Blow Dryer – Getting doused by a drink while dining out can make the hot-air dryer in the restaurant restroom seem like a good option for drying up the damp spots on your clothing. But alcohol, and mixers such as fruit juice and soda, contain sugar, and heat will set a sugar stain, creating a yellow-brown spot that’s really tough to remove. To avoid this, flush that stain with generous amounts of club soda and/or lukewarm water, blotting with cloth napkins or paper towels as you go. If you can’t resist the urge to push the button on the blower, do everything you can to rinse away the original spill before stepping up to the dryer. Stay away from the soap dispenser, too, if your drink was one of those fruity beverages – soap can set a fruit stain in fabric.”
From ‘Natural Stain Removal Secrets’ by Deborah L. Martin