8 Common Items That Remove Blood Stains

Updated: Feb. 26, 2024

Wondering how to remove blood stains? Work as quickly as possible with these household items to save your soiled clothes.

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Whether you nick yourself while shaving or receive an unexpected scratch, it’s important to treat blood stains on your clothing as soon as possible; blood stains are relatively easy to remove before they set but can be nearly impossible to wash out after 24 hours. If you can get to the stain before it sets, remove blood stains by pouring full-strength white vinegar on the spot. Let it soak in for 5 to 10 minutes, then blot well with a cloth or towel. Repeat if necessary, then wash immediately. Just make sure you never try to clean any of these seven things with vinegar.

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Gallon size jugs of windshield washer fluid sold at a truck stop during.a summer heat wave in central Pennsylvania.
Jana Shea/Shutterstock


Rub out blood stains on clothing by dabbing the area with a half-strength solution of ammonia and water before laundering. This is a great method for how to remove blood stains, but it can also help get rid of perspiration and urine. You should also know how to whiten a yellow-stained pillow.

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three medical phials on a white background

Hydrogen peroxide

This works only on fresh blood stains. Apply 3 percent hydrogen peroxide directly to the stain, rinse with fresh water, and launder as usual. Find out what else hydrogen peroxide is great at cleaning.

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Cans of Coca-Cola on table
Africa Studio/Shutterstock


This is a great trick for how to remove blood stains that happen outside of the home. Instead of waiting to treat the stain when you get home, grab the nearest bottle of cola (yes, soda pop!) and begin soaking the stain. Aim to soak the stain in cola overnight for best results. Check out the 50 things you had no idea you could do with Coca-Cola.

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Photo for WD-40 Product for multi purpose use for rusty item. Photo taken on October 2017, at Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia, Home made studio photo.


Pretreat bloodstains with WD-40. Spray some directly on the stains, wait a couple of minutes, and then launder as usual. The WD-40 will help lift the blood stains so that it will come out easily in the wash. Try to get to the stain while it is still fresh because once it sets, it will be harder to get rid of. Use WD-40 to pretreat other stubborn stains on clothing, such as lipstick, dirt, grease, and ink stains.

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White powder in silver spoon over white background. Top view. Detailed close-up shot. Icing, caster, confectioners or powdere sugar pile.
Eva Orlova/Shutterstock


When it comes to how to remove blood stains, the quicker you act, the better. Whether it’s on clothing or table linens, you can reduce or remove blood stains with this method. Make a paste of cornstarch mixed with cold water. Cover the blood stains with the cornstarch paste and rub it gently into the fabric. Now put the cloth in a sunny location to dry. Once dry, brush off the remaining residue. If the stain is not completely gone, repeat the process. Find out some ordinary things that can help get rid of grease stains too.

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talcum powder

Talcum powder

Here’s how to remove blood stains from clothing or furniture: Make a paste of water and talcum powder and apply it to the spot. When it dries, brush away the blood stains. Substitute cornstarch or cornmeal if you are out of talcum powder.

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Water glass in restaurant

Cold saltwater

As quickly as possible, soak a bloodstained item of clothing in a pot of cold saltwater. After it soaks for 3-4 hours, rub the blood stains with liquid detergent and throw it in the wash.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published in Reader's Digest