How to remove stains after the laundry? If you've never been to Bali, you wouldn't understand this question.
But periodically in Bali, we encounter a situation where light-colored clothes come back from the laundry with cream-to-rust streaks that can't be removed with regular detergent. Sometimes, such stains even appear after hand washing. Some say the stains come from waterborne fungi that the washing machine's filter can't stop. Others believe it's rust from the filters themselves. In reality, these stains remain on light clothing due to sunscreen. They become visible after coming into contact with water. You can avoid this by washing the item immediately after contact with sunscreen using cold water and dishwashing liquid or laundry stain remover.
What to do if the stains have already appeared?
If the item is purely white, you can use chlorine bleach. It's available in most Balinese supermarkets or even in many minimarts under brands like Proclin or Baylcin.
Certainly, it's important to follow all the precautions you would observe when working with chlorine bleach:
- Avoid contact with mucous membranes.
- Ideally, prevent contact with the skin.
- Don't inhale the fumes.
- Avoid contact with colored fabrics.
- Ensure not to leave the bleach on for too long to prevent damage to the fabric's structure.
But what should you do if the laundry has stained colored clothing? You wouldn't want to discard it, right?
In such situations, Oxy Magic, a powder containing sodium percarbonate, often comes to the rescue. It's sold in stores like Pepito, Carrefour, and occasionally can be found in Ace Hardware. The benefit of Oxy Magic is that it removes rust stains while leaving the pattern on your clothing intact. If you can't find it in offline stores, you can try purchasing it on Tokopedia. It's truly an effective solution!
This product is suitable for both colored and white fabrics, it won't damage the color of your clothing.
This product has a bleaching effect, do not use it for colored clothing!
The same composition is found in Vanish Oxy Action Powder. During the pandemic, it became easier to find in stores than Oxy Magic.
Sodium percarbonate is formed by combining hydrogen peroxide with sodium carbonate. Industrial companies refer to this preparation as "persalt."
Oxygen bleach, sodium percarbonate, is used for:
- Stain removal
- Fabric whitening
- Disinfecting clothing and linens
Sodium percarbonate rapidly decomposes in water to form soda and oxygen, which whitens, cleans, disinfects, and eliminates odors. Soda increases the pH of the water and reduces the activity of calcium and magnesium ions, leading to water softening and increased detergent effectiveness. Another capability of sodium percarbonate is increasing the negative charge on dirt and fabric, which, with the increased pH, results in dirt being repelled from the fabric, enhancing cleaning and whitening efficiency.
Furthermore, this product preserves fabric color brightness, does not contain chlorine-based substances, and easily handles tough stains like grease, wine, food, grass, dirt, etc.
Sodium percarbonate is a rather aggressive chemical, so it's important to wear rubber gloves when using it for manual washing.
How to use it:
- Moisten the stained area and the surrounding area slightly. You can also dampen the entire garment and then wring it out.
- Sprinkle the powder on top, covering the stained area, and gently mix the powder granules with water. They won't completely dissolve, but that's okay. While you mix the powder on the fabric with water, there will be very little contact, likely not exceeding a minute, so gloves aren't necessary. However, it's important to rinse your hands afterward.
- Leave the garment for a couple of hours. Then, rinse the item thoroughly and let it dry! Periodically check if the stains are gone. If you leave the mixture on the fabric for too long, it might damage the fabric's structure.
Some people use Vanish liquid or lime juice to remove such stains. How have you dealt with similar stains?