How to Get Vaseline Stains Out of Clothes

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Things You'll Need

  • Plastic knife or spoon

  • Paper towels

  • Iron

  • WD-40

  • Dawn dish soap

  • Clean cloth

  • Isopropyl alcohol

Tip

Read and follow all manufacturer's care instructions before washing the garment.

Vaseline, also known as petroleum jelly, was invented by Robert Chesebrough and became a staple for moisturizing skin. Invented in the 1860s and branded in 1870, this product become an instant success and by 1875 was purchased at an astonishing rate of one jar per every minute in the United States. Its popularity may have dwindled a little since then, but its long established reputation still speaks for itself. While Vaseline works wonders on skin, it's not quite so wonderful on clothing, so if you happen to make a mess, it's easily remedied.

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Step 1

Lie the garment flat and use a plastic knife or spoon to scrape away as much of the Vaseline as possible. Place a paper towel over the stained area and iron it with the iron on a low setting to lift the stain. Swap out the paper towel as needed and keep ironing until no more Vaseline will come up. Launder the garment as usual.

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Step 2

Scrape away as much of the Vaseline as possible with a blunt edge such as a plastic knife or spoon and saturate the area with WD-40. Allow the area to soak for at least 15 minutes before rinsing it out with clean cold water. If any stain remains, repeat the process until the stain is gone before laundering the garment.

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Step 3

Scrape the area clean with a plastic scraper such as a plastic utensil; when no more Vaseline will come up, cover the area with Dawn dish soap and rub it in with a clean cloth. Allow the area to soak for 10 to 15 minutes before rinsing with clean cold water. Check the stain and if it's still visible, repeat the process before laundering.

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Step 4

Saturate the area with isopropyl alcohol after scraping away as much excess Vaseline as possible with a blunt edge. Allow the area to soak for at least 10 minutes. Rub the area with a clean cloth dipped in cold water. Repeat the process as needed before laundering.

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references & resources

Melynda Sorrels

Melynda Sorrels spent 10 years in the military working in different capacities of the medical field, including dental assisting, health services administration, decontamination and urgent medical care. Awarded the National Guardsman’s Medal for Lifesaving efforts in 2002, Sorrels was also a nominee for a Red Cross Award and a certified EMT-B for four years.