If you like Asian food as much as we do, you’ve probably had a few accidents involving soy sauce. It’s one of those things that’s difficult to avoid when you’re passionate about delicious food. Unfortunately, soy sauce can be a real pain to get out of clothes, especially if they’re white.
But worry not! Here we’ll discuss how to get soy sauce out of clothes quickly and easily! Whether the stain is fresh or already set in, there’s a way to remove it without a trace.
So, if you want to restore your clothes from an unfortunate spillage, read on and find tips and tricks for making your clothes look as good as new.
Are Soy Sauce Stains Hard to Remove?
Sadly, yes. This dark condiment is the arch-nemesis of textiles, especially white ones. But not all hope is lost, even if you do happen to be clumsier than usual around soy sauce. While these stains can be difficult to remove, getting rid of them is by no means impossible.
All you need for that is the right method and a little bit of effort.
And remember, the most important thing is to react quickly. Soy sauce stains set very quickly, so it’s important to act immediately to better your chances of getting them out.
As we mentioned before, when soy sauce gets on your clothes, you should deal with it ASAP.
Here’s a step-by-step explanation of what you need to do:
1. Remove as Much Soy Sauce as Possible
It’s simple — just use a spoon or the blunt side of the knife to scoop and remove any soy sauce left on your clothing.
2. Blot Like There’s No Tomorrow
If the stain is fresh, a white cloth and a paper towel or two can help you get soy sauce stains out of clothes (or at least make them less serious) before washing takes place.
Just blot the stained area gently until you can’t anymore. Don’t rub to avoid setting the stain in. If this doesn’t help, sponge the area.
3. Rinse the Stain
Turn your stained shirt inside out, put it under running water, and rinse well. Be patient and persistent — cold water should remove a good deal of the sauce.
Next Step — Spot-Cleaning the Stain
More often than not, a soy sauce stain will remain visible on your garment even after blotting and rinsing. That’s why your next step should be spot-cleaning.
How to Get Soy Sauce Out of Jeans and Other Clothes
You can use the following cleaning agents for clothes made of denim, cotton, linen, and synthetic materials:
Enzyme-Based Stain Remover
These stain eradicators are usually pretty effective. Just let them work their magic for at least 10 minutes. Use them on colored clothes.
Tip — Don’t use enzyme-based stain removers on clothes made of silk or wool. Such fabrics require cleaning agents with a bit more acidity.
Heavy-Duty Liquid Laundry Detergent
If you don’t have a store-bought stain remover, you can pre-treat your stained clothes with liquid detergent:
- Pour a few drops on the stain and rub it in.
- Leave it on for at least 10 minutes.
- Rinse it off.
This is the most hardcore stain-removing method, suitable for removing soy sauce stains from polyester, nylon, and other synthetic fabrics:
- Mix a large spoon of ammonia with 12 cups of water.
- Sponge the stain with the mixture.
Tip — Be careful not to mix bleach with cleaning products containing chlorine bleach to avoid creating toxic (even deadly!) gases called chloramines.
How to Remove a Soy Sauce Stain From Delicate Fabrics
Delicate fabrics like burlap, silk, and wool require cleaning agents that are a little bit more on the acidic side. Such cleaners can be found at a store, or you can make your own — it’s up to you.
Make a Vinegar and Lemon Juice Cleaner
Dilute a tablespoon or two of lemon juice or white vinegar in lukewarm water and then spot-clean the stain with the solution on both sides (inside and outside).
Tip — Don’t forget to try this cleaning solution on a small, inconspicuous area of your clothing before blotting it into the stain to make sure no discoloration or damage will occur.
Use Rubbing Alcohol
If you don’t have a wet spotter, you can use rubbing alcohol to get soy sauce stains out of delicate fabrics:
- Pour one teaspoon of alcohol into a cup of warm water.
- Spray the mixture on the affected area (on both sides — inside and out).
- Let it rest for at least 30 minutes.
Rinse your clothes.
Mix Dish Soap and White Vinegar
You can create a gentle fabric cleaner for removing soy sauce stains by mixing the following ingredients:
- One teaspoon of dish soap
- One tablespoon of white vinegar
- Two cups of lukewarm water
It’s best to use distilled white vinegar because it has a higher acidity level than other types of vinegar, making it more effective at breaking down stains.
Make sure to spot-clean both sides of the stained fabric and use an old toothbrush to rub off the stain if necessary.
How to Get Dried Soy Sauce Out of Clothes — Pre-Soaking
If the stain is fresh, you can probably just throw your clothes in the washing machine right after spot cleaning and be done with it. But for older, more stubborn stains, you’ll need to do a little extra work first, and this means pre-soaking.
Here are a few pre-soaking options:
Rub Glycerin on a Dried Soy Sauce Stain
Liquid glycerin is effective in removing dried soy sauce stains:
- Rub vegetable glycerin into the stain.
- Let it sit for 30 minutes.
- Rinse it with cold water.
Vinegar is a great natural cleaner and can be used on a variety of fabrics.
With vinegar, soy sauce stain removal will be as easy as pie:
- Mix one quart of warm water with a teaspoon of white vinegar and half a teaspoon of liquid detergent.
- Submerge your stained clothes in the solution.
- Wait for 15 minutes.
- Rinse well.
Laundry Detergent and Borax
Borax is a great substitute for harsh cleaners. And you can use it on both colored and white clothes:
- Combine warm water, a few drops of laundry detergent, and borax (you can create the solution in a container or bathtub).
- Put the clothing in the tub or the container and soak it overnight.
- Wash the clothing as usual.
How to Get Soy Sauce Out of White Clothes
Soy sauce stains on your favorite white shirt also require some extra effort. Just like clothes with dried soy sauce stains, white clothes have to be soaked in an appropriate cleaner before you toss them into the washing machine for the stain to completely go away.
3% Hydrogen Peroxide
White and colorfast fabrics are excellent candidates for this pre-soaking method.
- Mix one cup of hydrogen peroxide with two cups of cold water.
- Submerge the clothing in the mixture.
- Let it soak for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Launder as usual.
If you’re not sure whether the stained garment is colorfast and fear hydrogen peroxide might damage it, you can test it for colorfastness before soaking it into the solution:
- Get some hydrogen peroxide solution onto a cotton swab.
- Dab the hydrogen peroxide solution on an inconspicuous area of the clothing item.
If any color comes off onto the cotton swab, the garment isn’t colorfast, and you shouldn’t use 3% hydrogen peroxide on it.
Bleach is your white clothes‘ best friend, especially when it comes to food stains.
All you have to do to remove soy sauce stains from your white clothes using bleach is to:
- Use a napkin, paper towel, or a clean cloth to blot out as much soy sauce as possible from your clothes immediately.
- Rinse the stain with cold water.
- Apply a bleach pen or bleach solution to the stain.
- Rinse the stain with cold water again.
- Launder as usual.
- Repeat the process if necessary.
Final Step — Machine Washing
After you’ve pre-treated the stain, it’s time for laundering. Wash your clothing at the highest temperature it can withstand, and use colorfast bleach. Check the clothes for stains after machine washing and repeat the cleaning process if the stain isn’t gone.
Don’t put the clothes in the dryer until you’ve gotten rid of the stain to prevent the stain from setting in.
Soy Sauce Stains — Prevention
Knowing how difficult it may be to get a soy sauce stain out of clothes, it’s best to try to avoid them from occurring in the first place.
Here’s what you can do to prevent these pesky stains:
- Keep a napkin on your lap to protect your favorite jeans from accidental spills.
- If you’re cooking with soy sauce, be sure to wipe down any surfaces that might come into contact with the sauce (and on which you may end up leaning against, staining your clothes). This includes countertops, cutting boards, or induction cooktops.
- Be careful when handling soy sauce packets. It’s easy to accidentally completely rip apart and cause a big mess.
There you have it! With these simple steps, you’ll get soy sauce stains out of your favorite clothes in no time.
So go ahead and enjoy your next meal without worry. Take those chopsticks for a spin and know that if you do happen to spill, you now have the knowledge to make the stain disappear.
And if nothing else works, you can always turn to good old dry cleaning.
Are soy sauce stains permanent?
Soy sauce stains can be difficult to remove, but they aren’t necessarily permanent!
If you act quickly, the chances of success increase. Getting rid of these stains is more complicated once they set in, especially when it comes to light-colored garments. But it’s definitely not impossible. You’ll just need to invest extra effort for good results.
Can bleach remove soy sauce stains?
Yes, oxygen bleach can be used to remove soy sauce, but only on white or colorfast clothes.
- Just pour it in cold water and put the stained shirt inside.
- Wait a few hours.
- Rinse the bleach off.
Don’t forget to test a small piece of the fabric (e.g., an inconspicuous spot on the inside of the garment) for colorfastness before you plunge your whole shirt into the bleach solution.
What’s the best way to get soy sauce out of white clothes?
For the best results, you’ll have to pre-treat soy sauce stains on your white clothes. You can use any of the methods we discussed above to spot-clean and pre-treat a soy sauce stain on white clothes.
But you can also use a more potent bleaching agent like 3% hydrogen peroxide or chlorine bleach.
To do it correctly, follow the tips on how to get soy sauce out of clothes explained above.