How to remove turmeric stains from clothes

By | June 26, 2016

Removing turmeric stains

Turmeric is a very commonly used spice in many dishes and recipes. And sometimes when you drop some food off your spoon on your clothes, a yellowish stain appears almost instantly. That is how a turmeric stain looks.

Turmeric stains from cooked food settles very fast. The moment you drop it on clothes, a strong stain is set. It needs immediate action to remove it.

First of all, rinse the fabric with water to remove any excess food matter that might have caused the stain. Try rubbing gently with fingers. Afterwards, the only thing left would be a plain yellowish stain.

1. Lemon juice

Lemon contains citric acid which can dissolve and reduce the stain significantly. Use a small piece of lemon and rub the pulp side of it on the stain. Squeeze a little juice on the stain and let it stay for a few minutes. Then gently rub again.

Keep doing till the stain reduces or disappears completely. Once the stain has been treated with lemon, wash as usual with detergent.

However, you should first read the label on the fabric to ensure that it is washable. Some fabrics may not withstand the effect of lemon juice.

Another useful trick is to put the stained clothe in bright sunlight after applying lemon juice. Sunlight has a mild bleaching effect and often helps remove stains faster.

2. Use vinegar

Vinegar consists of acetic acid and has an effect similar to that of lemon. Just mix 1 part vinegar with 1 part water in a cup and soak it with a sponge or washcloth.

Then dab the sponge on the stain. You can gently rub it if the garment is a cotton shirt or trousers. Keep doing till the stain is completely gone or atleast reduced a lot.

3. Treat with usual detergent or dishwashing liquid

If some traces of the stain still persist after applying lemon or vinegar, you can try doing some pre-treatment using washing detergent.

First wet the stain with little water and then apply some detergent on it and rub gently so that it becomes like a paste or foam. Let it stay for about 20 minutes like that. Then wash as usual. The stain should be gone.

Alternatively you can also apply dishwashing liquid on the stain and gently rub it to create a foam. Let it stay like that for about 15 minutes and then wash.

4. Commercial cleaner

If the stain is stronger than what you can deal with using the above methods, its time to switch to a real stain remover. There are plenty of products available out there. You can get them from either your local hardware store or online from

Oxiclean is a very popular stain remover product that is used to remove common types of stains from various kinds of fabrics. You can try it.


If the fabric is non-washable or dry clean only, then you should not try any of the above methods yourself. Instead take it to some local dry cleaning service or call a professional.

Always read the label for washing guidelines before applying anything. Certain fabrics are delicate and may get ruined with the effect of solutions like vinegar or bleach.

If you know of any other solution to remove turmeric stains or would like to share you experience, please use the comment box below.

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