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Video:How to Remove Ketchup Stains

with Jonathon E. Stewart

Ketchup - great for your hot dogs, not so great for your shirt. Yet somehow this tomato condiment always makes it way onto clothes. See how to get rid of ketchup stains with a few simple tricks.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Remove Ketchup Stains

Hey guys - Jonathon Stewart here for About.com with today's 90 second quick tip. Though it's known around the world as Red Sauce, Tomato Sauce, and even Tommy Sauce, you probably know it best by its American name, ketchup. This versatile condiment that was once referred to as "Blessed relief for Mother and the other women in the household!," it can leave a pretty nasty stain if it ends up on your clothes. But fear not, take a look at these tips and your laundry will be ketchup-free. Check it out.

Inside Ketchup Stains

Tomato-based stains like ketchup stains can be tough to remove due to their red color and tendency to seep deep into fabric pores. Start by using a butter knife or spoon to gather any excess ketchup that has yet to soak in - the sooner you can get to it, the better.

You may be tempted to lick this delicious hot dog topper off your shirt, but I've been told this really isn't the best way. I mean, do you know where that shirt's been?

Remove the Ketchup Stain

Next, run cold water through the back of the fabric, which will help to push the ketchup back out the way it came. Next, dab a small amount of color-safe liquid detergent on the front of the stain and gently work it into the fabric. Allow this to sit for about ten minutes and rinse the same as before. Hopefully this will do the trick right away, but like I said, these guys can be kind of pesky. But before you go whipping out your bleach sticks and chemical stain removers, give these all-natural approaches a shot.

Apply a thin layer of baking soda to the front of the stain, then dip it into a small amount of white vinegar. The resulting effervescent chemical reaction will help to loosen the remaining ketchup from the fibers of your fabric,especially since many varieties of ketchup are vinegar-based. Hydrogen peroxide is another great bleach alternative, just be sure to test a small spot on your clothing to make sure the color doesn't run.

Oxygen-based cleaners can work wonders as well, just be sure to read your labels closely to make sure they're not slipping in any bleach-like chemicals. After all, who wants chemicals in their oxygen?

Launder the Ketchup Stain

Finally, launder as usual on the hottest temperature your fabric can handle, and check the stain as soon as it comes out of the washer. Repeat any of these steps as necessary, and be sure to never put your garment in the dryer until you're happy with your stain removal results.

And then proceed to dive back into your ketchup consumption with abandon. And, you might also be happy to learn that these tips work equally well, for catsup.

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