It is a Saturday night. You are having friends over, you are chatting, catching up, and having a good time. Suddenly you see, almost in slow motion, a glass falling to the floor. One second later, there is a big red wine stain on your rug. But don't worry, the help is here. With these tips, only using household remedies, you can get rid of red wine stains, so you don't have to toss the rug all together.
How to remove red wine stains
It is important to act as soon as possible to improve your chances of getting completely rid of the stain. Red wine stains are awfully tough, but if you start removing them before they are completely absorbed into the rug, you have a shot at eliminating them.
Firstly: Grab a paper towel or a clean cloth and absorb as much liquid as possible before it sets. If you blot it well, you will take most of the wine out of the rug, but probably not all of it.
Secondly: Pour a bit of cold water directly on the stain. Doing this will dilute the red wine. Do some more blotting. From here on, there are different methods that you can use:
The Salt method
1. Pour salt over the stain while it is still wet
Cover the stain with plenty of salt. The salt will draw the moisture out of the rug little by little. If your stain is already dry, pour a little water on it first and then add the salt.
2. Let the salt sit
The salt will gradually turn pinkish as it absorbs the red wine. Let the salt sit for a couple of hours or even overnight.
3. Remove as much salt as possible and vacuum the rug
The stain will now be completely gone or at least less visible.
The Baking soda method
1. Prepare a baking soda paste
Mix a three to one ratio of water to baking soda and apply it to the stain.
2. Spread the paste generously over the stain
3. Cover the stain with a clean cloth and let it sit overnight
Put a heavy item on top of the cloth to ensure constant pressure. The baking soda is pushed down into the stain and cleans it more deeply.
4. Vacuum up the baking soda once it is dry
When the baking soda has soaked up most of the moisture from the stain, vacuum it. The stain will now be completely gone or at least less visible.
The Vinegar method
Both salt and baking soda are alkaline as opposed to vinegar, which is acid. So if neither salt nor baking soda works, try this method:
1. Prepare a solution of water, white vinegar and dishwashing liquid
Mix two cups of warm water with one tablespoon of white vinegar and one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid.
2. Dip a sponge in the solution and apply directly onto the wine stain
The mixture will enter into the rug fibers and loosen the stain. Shift between blotting on the vinegar solution and drying it up. Finish by drying it up.
3. Wet the whole stain with cold water
Pour a little water directly on the stain or soak a clean cloth in cold water and drip it on the stain to dilute the red wine. Soak up the water by blotting with a clean, dry cloth.
4. Repeat until the stain is gone
How to blot
Believe it or not, there is a good and a bad way of blotting. Here are some tips:
- Always blot in an up-and-down motion. If you rub in a side-to-side motion the cloth will absorb some of the red wine but the rest will set even deeper into the rug fibers. In a worst-case scenario, rubbing will even make the stain larger.
- Start by blotting the edges of the stain and then move to the center. This keeps the stain from getting any larger than it already is and prevents sharp edges on any remaining stain, making it less visible.
Important: Always try these methods on an invisible part of the rug to make sure that they don't damage it.
Did the candles drip on the rug? See our cleaning tips for candle wax.