It’s called ‘bleach’, my husband tells me. But I was loathe to use it. Besides potential environmental dangers, I remember using bleach to reverse ‘tie-dye’ t-shirts in high school. If I left them in the bleach too long they would disintegrate. So I was looking for something non-toxic.
This post will reveal some less-than-flattering aspects of my personality and hygiene. But I’m prepared to deal with the backlash because maybe there are others out there like me who simply didn’t know what to do about this problem.
I don’t use any anti-perspirant and my deodorant is homemade of non-toxic ingredients, so despite claims by others that yellow stains are an interaction with aluminum-based anti-perspirants, I was pretty sure mine were just a result of my nasty sweat. Nasty sweat?, you scoff – and if you do, you clearly do not know me. Maybe it’s my chronic dehydration, maybe I eat the wrong foods, maybe it’s my poor bathing habits (I’ve gotten much better…), but family and close friends can attest that I have always had pretty nasty sweat.
As a result, some of my favourite cotton summer shirts eventually developed yellow-tinged stains from underarm sweat. This summer those shirts were unwearable. And still I didn’t know what to do. SO they sat in a pile in my bedroom all summer. yes.
BUT – my wandering mind and the interwebs converged one rainy afternoon and a solution was found. Pretty simply, it involves ingredients I already had in the house.
Here is what you need:
1 c. vinegar in 2 c. warm water
1/2 c baking soda
1 T salt
1 T hydrogen peroxide
And here’s what you do:
- Soak item (or offending area of item) in vinegar water for at least 20 min.
- Gently squeeze out and lay on a towel
- Rub mixture of baking soda, salt, and hydrogen peroxide into stain
- Let sit for at least 20 min
- Throw in the wash!
What was especially cool about this method is that it also works on coloured shirts. I have a lovely delicate blue cotton blouse – sleeveless, but still ringed with yellow under the arms. That shirt too is now sparkling clean! And still blue!