White shirts are classy wardrobe staples. They make anyone who wears them feel like James Dean in Rebel Without A Cause. Unfortunately, their blinding whiteness makes it easier for stains to see. While those caused by food and dust may go away, those that find their home in the armpit are not. With a bright yellow colour, they make the shirt look dirty. It also doesn’t help that it makes the wearer seem uncaring for decency!
Indeed, it is difficult to remove these stains using ordinary washing methods. Some even end up throwing their white shirts because they find it embarrassing to wear! That is very wasteful, and unnecessary. This is why it is essential to learn how to remove them effectively, to prevent waste and for practicality.
You can actually find the cleaning ingredients in your kitchen and medicine kit. Hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and vinegar must be in your arsenal. Along with a firm (but not hard!) brush and some water, you can finally start your Operation: No More Yellow!
You have two choices for your cleaning method. You can either mix one of the three main ingredients with the same amount of water. Or, you can go full-on Marie Curie and mix hydrogen peroxide and baking soda.
Using a brush, rub in the mixture on the armpit area. Be careful that you do not accidentally overstretch the cloth, or cause tears. This will help lift the yellow stains, especially when they have “caked”: multiple layers on top of one another as the stain builds up over time.
Soak the shirt in the same mixture that you brushed on the stains. This will ensure that the chemicals will be given the sufficient time to work its way through the fabric. Give it 30 minutes, or if you have enough time, overnight. When you feel like it has been soaked enough, rinse it with cold water and check. If you still see some stains left, repeat the process until you are satisfied that it has been clean enough.
You can also opt to fully wash the shirt after the yellow stains have been removed. Wash it as usual on high heat with heavy-duty detergent. Sun-dry the shirt to allow the natural heat of the sun to brighten up the fabric, and also to remove nasty smells that might have remained.
Some Additional Notes
Contrary to what people may tell you, NEVER use bleach! The chlorine may build up and worsen the stain. It is also essential to know what kind of deodorant you are wearing. Those with high concentration of aluminum are the usual suspects. Because of the chemical reactions with our natural body sweat, stains are formed, leading to those yellow marks. Use natural antiperspirants, or those with relatively low aluminum concentration.
Wearing body hugging attire can also cause these stains. The bacteria buildup, combined with sweat that did not properly dry out, make for a very unflattering look (and smell). Do wear clothes that will let your pits have some breathing room and reduce contact with the surface of the fabric.
And of course, if you have concerns (or do not have the time to wash your clothes), contact us! We also do pick up and delivery all around Singapore for an affordable price. Looking classy with clean clothes doesn’t have to be that hard!
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