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Home > Miscellaneous > How to Remove Grass Stains
by Various

Having problems getting out grass stains from your favorite gi? Here are some suggestions from people on the Aikido-L mailing list.

Likeliness of getting an old stain out the first time:

    * Probably not
    ** It has happened
    *** 50/50
    **** Expect it
    ***** This has always worked before

The things you probably have around the house route:

  • Vinegar:
    (Do not use fruit vinegars! They bring their own stains.) Rub the vinegar in with a scrub brush. Rinse it out. Repeat until you're happy with the results or convinced it will never work. *

  • Vinegar and Baking Soda:
    Make a paste of baking soda and water, put it over the stain. Work in some vinegar with a scrub brush. The chemical reaction works well at bubbling stains out and gets kids interested in doing laundry. Worthwhile trying for that alone! **

  • Ammonia:
    Use in a well ventilated room or outdoors. Use straight on stubborn stains. Work in with scrub brush. Rinse well. This one also works well on old perspiration stains and collar rings. ***

  • Hydrogen Peroxide:
    Saturate the stain with the hydrogen peroxide. Put the garment out on the line to sun bleach. This method will lighten stains, but it also creates its own discolaration by removing some of the brighteners that are usually put into cloth during the factory bleaching/dyeing stage. **

  • Chrloring Bleach:
    This can also remove factory brighteners but ususally will reduce most stains. Drawback: a lot of people are chemically sensitive to it. If you are, you won't want to use it--it takes several rinses to get it all out, meanwhile, your hands are touching it. ***

  • Non-Chlorine Bleach:
    This is usually some form of peroxide with brighteners. For really stubborn stains, make a paste of it and rub into the fabric. ***

  • Your Favorite Laundry Soap or Detergent:
    Make a paste. Rub it in. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Wash as usual (adding the usual amount to the wash water). This works surprisingly often. ****

The things you have to go out and buy route:

  • Spot Removers:
    The best spot remover I've used is one sold for those stubborn lingerie stains. I buy it a Cacique, which is a lingerie chain in the USA. ***

  • RIT Whitener:
    This bleaches stains out but puts those chemical brighteners back in. You'll be essentially dyeing the fabric white again so you have to go through the dye routine: wear gloves and stir with a stick if you are having to use the wash pot method. This is a really good solution, though, and you can toss in those coffee-stained white shirts, mud-stained socks, and beet-stained aprons while your at it. *****

You might also check with nurses' uniform shops. I've been told that they use a really phenomenal cleaner to keep their whites free of various body-fluid stains. I don't know how it would work on chlorophyl, but it would be worth having around anyways.

- Laura Hague leh@MAIL.UTEXAS.EDU

The one time I got grass stains on my gi, I immediately took it home and washed it in cold water then air-dried it (i.e. no dryer). This got about 98% of the stains out. The rest came out the next washing or two even though I used a dryer. However, it sounds like you are past this point and are trying to find a way to get some severe stains out. I would try soaking in a dilute bleach solution or possibly a stain remover. Good luck!

- Marc St_Onge mdston@wicken.monsanto.com

One way is to dye your gi grass green. Another one is to get yourself a hakama. Grass stains doesn't show that easily on black cloth :-)

- Kjartan Clausen kjartan@II.UIB.NO

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