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How to remove red wine stains from almost anything

Spill some red wine? No problem! Here's how to get your fabrics clean as new.

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I like to enjoy a nice glass of red wine every now and then. But, no matter how careful I am, sometimes spills just happen! Luckily, I've learned that I don’t have to toss that nice top or move furniture to cover a stain on the carpet.

Instead, I found some ways to easily remove red wine from clothing, upholstery, and even carpeting. The next time you need to pick up a spill, don't panic! Just check out our handy guide and remember that some stains can come out in as little as 10 minutes.

How to remove red wine stains from clothing

Wine stain on clothing
Credit: Getty Images
Don't panic! It's just a wine stain.

What You Need:

• Clean white cotton cloth
• Bowl
• Table salt
• Boiling water

Prep Time Needed: 5 minutes
Total Time Needed: Approximately 45 minutes, plus overnight air dry
Difficulty: Easy

Step-by-Step


1. Gently dab at the stain with a damp, white cotton cloth to absorb any excess wine. DON’T rub the stained area—that will just set the stain and make it harder to remove!
2. Get the bowl ready, and pull the stained item tightly as you slide the bowl underneath it. Carefully center the stained area over the bowl and secure it with a large rubber band.
3. Sprinkle salt over the stain. Allow it to sit for at least five minutes so the salt can absorb the red wine. In the meantime, get your boiling water ready.
4. Slowly pour boiling water over the stain. This will help to flush the wine out of the fabric.
5. Place the item in the washing machine on the gentle or delicates cycle with warm water.
6. Remove from the washing machine and check to see if the stain is gone. If not, wash it again in the machine.
7. Allow the fabric to air dry

How to remove red wine stains from carpet

Red wine spilling
Credit: Getty Images
Oops!

What You Need:

• 2 clean white cotton cloths
• 1 tablespoon of liquid hand dishwashing detergent
• 1 tablespoon of white vinegar
• 2 cups of warm water
• Sponge

Prep Time Needed: None needed
Total Time Needed: 10 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

  1. Using a sponge, blot up as much of the spilled wine as possible.
  2. In a small bowl, mix the dishwashing detergent and white vinegar with the warm water.
  3. Use a clean white cloth to dab at the stain with the detergent and vinegar solution.
  4. With a dry cloth, blot until the stain disappears.
  5. Using a sponge and cold water, blot until dry.
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How to remove red wine stains from upholstery

Wine stain on tablecloth
Credit: Getty Images
Wine ring on a white table cloth? Not a problem.

What You Need:

• Clean white cotton cloth
• 1 tablespoon of liquid hand dishwashing detergent
• 2 cups of cool water
• 2 sponges

Prep Time Needed: None needed
Total Time Needed: 10 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Cleaning red wine off upholstery is similar to removing it from carpet. There's no vinegar in this mixture because it could damage exposed wood. But if you're careful—or if the spot you're cleaning isn't close to wood—you can always add it.

  1. Using a sponge, blot up as much of the spilled wine as possible.
  2. Mix one tablespoon of liquid hand dishwashing detergent with two cups of cool water.
  3. Use a clean white cloth to sponge the stain with the detergent solution.
  4. Blot until the liquid is absorbed. Repeat as necessary until the stain disappears.
  5. Sponge with cold water and blot dry.

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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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