How to Remove Deodorant Stains from Black Shirts

Dealing with deodorant stains on black shirts is undeniably a subtle wardrobe dilemma we all encounter. The chic elegance of a black shirt often falls victim to the glaring contrast of white deodorant marks, especially in the underarm area, leaving our sleek look slightly tarnished and unintentionally spotlighted.

Delving into this, let’s quickly and naturally—yet effectively—address those stubborn stains, whether they are set-in deodorant marks or fresh mishaps. Ensuring your black t-shirts remain immaculate and sophisticated, we’ll explore simple, clean strategies to maintain their crisp, unstained appeal without a trace of unwanted white streaks.

Removing Deodorant Stains from Black Shirts

Remove Deodorant Stains from Black Shirts

1: Dish Soap and Toothbrush

Quick method to remove deodorant stains from black shirts.

  1. Apply a small amount of dish soap to the stain.
  2. Rub the dish soap into the stain with a toothbrush.
  3. Rinse the area with cold water.
  4. Repeat steps 1-3 until the stain is gone.
  5. Wash the shirt as usual.

This method is fast and effective, and it can be used on most types of fabric. It is important to note, however, that dish soap can be harsh on some fabrics, so it is always best to test it in an inconspicuous area of the shirt first.

Here are some additional tips for using this method:

  • Use a soft toothbrush to avoid damaging the fabric.
  • Rub the stain gently in a circular motion.
  • Rinse the area thoroughly with cold water to remove all of the dish soap.
  • Wash the shirt as soon as possible after removing the stain.

If you are unable to remove the deodorant stain with this method, you can try a different method mentioned below or take the shirt to a professional cleaner.

2: Nylon Tights

An ideal remedy for those freshly made, yet to be washed, white streaks on black shirts. Nylon’s slight rough texture helps to physically remove the deodorant from the fabric.

  1. Take an old or ripped pair of nylon tights.
  2. Rub the fresh stain in circular motions until it fades away.
  3. Be cautious: this method might not be as effective on older or yellowish stains.

3: White Vinegar

Harness the natural acidic property of vinegar to combat stubborn yellowish stains. Especially effective for light-colored shirts without risking the fabric’s original hue.

  1. Mix two tablespoons of white vinegar with one cup of warm water.
  2. Apply the solution to the stain, rubbing gently.
  3. For persistent stains, soak in a half-and-half vinegar-water mix for an hour.
  4. Wash the shirt in the hottest cycle suitable for the fabric.

4: Baking Soda

A non-aggressive remedy suitable for almost all shirt colors. Baking soda breaks down the stain, leaving the fabric untouched.

  1. Prepare a paste using three parts baking soda to one part water.
  2. Apply on the stain and scrub gently with a toothbrush.
  3. Let the paste sit for a few hours, then wash the shirt normally.

5: The Hydrogen Peroxide & Dish Soap

An effective combo for those pristine white shirts. However, remember the color-altering properties of hydrogen peroxide on colored fabrics.

  1. Mix two parts hydrogen peroxide with one part dish soap.
  2. Apply the concoction to the stain, letting it sit for an hour.
  3. Wash the shirt, noting that this method is best suited for white shirts.

6: Lemon Juice & Salt

The acidity of the lemon juice helps to break down the deodorant, while the salt acts as an abrasive to help remove the stain.

  1. Directly squeeze lemon juice onto the stain.
  2. Generously sprinkle salt over the lemon juice.
  3. Gently rub the mix with a cloth and allow it to dry in sunlight.
  4. Wash the shirt as usual, being aware that this might not be suitable for synthetic fabrics.

7: Baking Soda

Baking soda’s mild abrasive nature ensures a thorough clean without being harsh on the fabric.

  1. Create a mixture using a 3:1 ratio of baking soda to water.
  2. Spread the mixture onto the stain.
  3. Gently scrub the area with a soft toothbrush.
  4. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes, then wash as usual.

8: Aspirin Method

Alleviate your black shirt from unsightly marks with this unlikely stain-fighting hero.

  1. Crush 2-3 aspirin pills.
  2. Mix with half a cup of warm water to form a paste.
  3. Apply directly to the deodorant mark.
  4. Allow it to sit for a couple of hours, then rinse and wash as normal.

9: Salt & Hot Water Soak

Revive your shirt’s glory with the cleansing properties of salt in warm water.

  1. Dissolve a half cup of salt in a quart of hot water.
  2. Soak the stained area of the shirt for 3-4 hours.
  3. Rinse and then wash the shirt as you normally would.

10: Lemon Juice

The citric power of lemon works wonders in lightening and removing the stain without causing any fabric harm.

  1. Squeeze fresh lemon juice directly onto the stain.
  2. Gently rub the stained area.
  3. Let it sit for 10 minutes and then wash the shirt as usual.

11: Meat Tenderizer

Believe it or not, meat tenderizers aren’t just for the kitchen. They contain enzymes that can break down the proteins in sweat and deodorant stains, making them easier to wash away.

  1. Wet the stained area of your shirt with cold water.
  2. Sprinkle enough meat tenderizer to cover the stain fully.
  3. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Wash the shirt as usual in the washing machine.

12: Baby Wipes

Baby wipes are a super easy way to remove white deodorant marks on black fabric. However, baby wipes may not be very effective for removing yellow or old stains that have set in. For those stains, you may need to use other methods, such as vinegar, baking soda, or meat tenderizer.

  1. Gently rub the deodorant stain with a baby wipe.
  2. Repeat the process until the mark is less noticeable.
  3. Proceed to wash the shirt as directed.
Clean Black T-Shirts

Tip for preventing deodorant stains in the first place

Apply deodorant to clean, dry skin. This will help to prevent the deodorant from mixing with sweat and bacteria, which can cause stains.

Quick Tips for Deodorant Stain Removal

Here are some additional tips for removing deodorant stains from black shirts:

  • Act quickly. The sooner you treat the stain, the easier it will be to remove.
  • Test any stain remover in an inconspicuous area of the shirt first. This will help to ensure that the stain remover does not damage the fabric or discolor the shirt.
  • Apply the stain remover to the affected area and let it sit for the recommended amount of time.
  • Rinse the area thoroughly with cold water.
  • Wash the shirt as soon as possible after removing the stain.

Related Guides