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Dirty Secrets: The Art of Chocolate Stain Removal


When we think of chocolate we often think of love. It is the treat we give children when they’ve worked hard, an affectionate gift for a loved one, a thank you for a teacher, and a simple source of comfort at any time. It has even been found to contain the same chemical (phenylethylamine) that your body releases when you fall in love, which explains a lot. But there are times when chocolate is not our best friend. And that’s when it’s caked into our clothes. The chocolate stain removal challenge comes in all shapes and sizes. You emerge from a truffle-induced dream and find a chocolatey smudge across your new white top… you hear a foreboding yell of ‘Mom, I think I sat on something!’ from the living room… the unpleasant experience of reaching into your eight-year-old’s pocket and discovering the melted, disfigured, fluffy remains of a two-day-old bar – all the sadder when you realise it could have ended up in your stomach rather than crushed into a pair of jeans! Whatever the cause, it’s a stain that isn’t going to give up easily. Time for some handy advice on how clean chocolate stains.  

Removing Chocolate Stains from Clothes: Start by Chilling it out

So how to remove stains like this? A good way to tackle chocolate is to take it back to its solid state before it can melt further into the fabric – the deeper it gets, the tougher it will be to lift out. Place the garment in a plastic bag (stain facing outwards so that it doesn’t spread onto clean parts of the garment) then into the fridge or freezer until it’s hard. Using a blunt knife or something similar, gently scrape or lever the excess chocolate off the clothes. Be careful not to catch any of the fibres or to press any chocolate further into the fabric as you are scraping. When you think you’ve got as much off as you safely can, finish with a quick wash with Surf excel Liquid Detergent. The enzymes in the detergent will help break down the stain and release it from the fabric.  

Chocolate Stain Removal with Water

Another simple stain removal solution is to rinse the back of the chocolate stain with cold water. Never use hot water on a chocolate stain, this will set it permanently. Run the cold tap over the stain for a couple of minutes to release it and stop it getting any deeper into the fabric before washing as usual with Surf excel Liquid Detergent.  

Soak your Troubles Away

How to remove chocolate stains from clothes when everything else fails? Give it a good soak. Although our products are designed to wash clothes clean first time, even in a quick wash, some really stubborn stains come out more easily if they are pre soaked, especially if you are going to be using cold water or washing by hand. For really stubborn chocolate stains, soak overnight in Surf excel Liquid detergent and cool water, then wash as usual the following day. For more expert laundry tips on how to remove stains from clothes, visit the stain removal tips section.  

What’s your top stain removal tip? How do you deal with chocolatey mess? Share your tips on how to remove chocolate stains from clothing with us in the comments below. We’d love to hear them.