How to Remove Hair & Body Oil Marks From Upholstery

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Things You'll Need

  • Baking soda

  • Vacuum

  • 1 tsp. mild hand dish washing liquid

  • Bowl

  • Sponge

  • Clean cloths


Substitute talcum powder or cornstarch to absorb the hair and body oils. Baking soda has the extra benefit of also removing odors.

Hair and body oils can leave discolored stains on upholstery.

The existence of hair and body oil is normal and helps the skin and scalp remain soft, preventing it from drying and cracking. When excessive amounts of hair and body oil come in contact with upholstered furniture, the oils can leave a greasy stain that, if left unattended, becomes a discolored dirt magnet. While commercial products are available to remove hair and body oil stains from upholstery, you can save yourself money and the chemical exposure by using home remedies instead.


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Step 1

Sprinkle a liberal amount of baking soda over the hair and body oil stains; cover the oil stains completely. Allow the baking soda to sit on the oil stains overnight to absorb the oil and accompanying odor.

Step 2

Vacuum the baking soda from the upholstery. Mix 1 tsp. hand dish washing liquid with 2/3 cup cold water in a bowl. Stir the solution together with your fingers to create soap suds.

Step 3

Use a sponge for gentle, effective cleaning.

Dip a clean sponge in the soapy solution and squeeze out the excess liquid. Dab at the remaining hair and body oil stains on the upholstery. Rinse the sponge off frequently, apply more soap solution and continue to blot until the oil stain is lifted.


Step 4

Dampen a clean cloth with plain water. Blot the site of the oil stain on the upholstery to rinse off the soap solution.

Step 5

Press clean, dry cloths into the upholstery to wick up as much moisture as possible, then allow the upholstery to air dry.



Mary Ylisela

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.