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Cleaning Ring Around the Collar

Woman Looking at Shirt Collar
Once the main subject of Wisk's TV commercials, ring around the collar continues to be a tough stain to remove. This is a guide about cleaning ring around the collar


Share on ThriftyFunThis guide contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!

By 1 found this helpful
June 2, 2011

Sometimes laundry pre-treaters just do not remove all the stains on my husband's shirt collars. To remove ring-around-the-collar stains on dress shirts or polo/golf shirts, scrub a dab of shampoo into each stain with an old toothbrush before you run your laundry. Shampoo is made to break up oil, dirt and sweat produced by our body, so shampoo works so well. You may never see another collar stain again!


Source: My Mom showed me this tip years ago.

By Bobbie from Rockwall, TX

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February 7, 20050 found this helpful

Clean ring-around-the-collar. Mark the stain heavily with white Crayola chalk. The chalk will absorb the sebum oil that holds in the dirt.

By chrystalkay

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

December 19, 20060 found this helpful

How do I remove yellowing and ring around the collar from white cotton dress shirts?

Ron from Bronx, New York

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May 19, 20110 found this helpful

I like "My Clean Shirt" it gets ring around the collar out, along with all of the other common stains. I am not sure if you can buy it in stores. I know you can buy it directly on the website. I have used it for a few months and I am very happy with it. When I got it I used it to remove some serious stains that were already "set"; it took two treatments, but the stains came out.

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November 17, 20130 found this helpful

I found a nice gentleman's button up shirt. I don't know the history of the stain other than extremely filthy. I read the comments here and don't have these things on hand so, I used: Peroxide and baking soda. The stain came out with minimal brushing.

In a large bowl, I placed the collar and arm pits of the shirt then poured peroxide along the stain. It seemed to just roll off on some parts so I submerged the shirt until fully wet. I poured some baking soda in my hand and just made a paste on the shirt already dampened with peroxide. I started to scrub but it seemed like the stain was lifting itself off.

There is a slight yellow stain remaining so I will do this again. If this doesn't work the second time, I am going to use denture cleaner.

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April 27, 20060 found this helpful

My Husband wears dress shirts quite regularly throughout the week, and I always take them to the dry cleaners. but the dry cleaner hasn't been able to get out the ring around the collar. Should I expect him to? Is he not doing what is expected of him? Or do I need to use something else to treat the ring around the collar? Most of them are french cuff shirts so I can't wash them myself. So what can I pretreat them with that i won't have to physically wash the whole shirt to get out?

Katie from Oshkosh, Wisconsin

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March 5, 20110 found this helpful

For years my husband and son wore dress shirts, sometimes I had 3 a day, 21 per week. I washed them all at home, gave them to each guy in a plastic bag and he would get them laundered or pressed at the dry cleaners at his office building. Cost the same but we knew they were really clean and with no ordors or nasty chemicals to irritate skin

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March 5, 20110 found this helpful

Wash the whole shirt and then send to cleaners, not a big job with today's washing machines. Actually, french cuffs are not hard to iron. Take it slow and easy and after a few efforts you will have it done. I used to calculate 5 mins per shirt. Then teach your men to do it themselves and now you are talking about saving serious money.

My son made a fortune in college pressing clothes for other guys, or he would wait in the laundrette and change their clothes from washer to dryer. He could study while he waited. He is now a human rights lawyer and very self-sufficient when he is posted in Africa or Asia. Mind you, I always say, thank god for T shirts

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September 16, 2011

How do I remove ring around the collar?

By Cindy

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September 19, 20110 found this helpful

Best thing I've found is Dawn dish detergent. Wet the collar then put a little of the Dawn on the ring, give it a good scrub before you put it in the washer. I'd think any type dish detergent would probably work too but I always use Dawn; seems to go farther.

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September 19, 20110 found this helpful

I keep a bottle of cheap shampoo for just this job and it works every time, so I guess it is that or the dawn. Good luck, popet

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By 0 found this helpful
June 22, 2016

What will remove old dark collar stains?

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June 28, 20170 found this helpful

Colgate white toothpaste with baking soda or oxi powder mix with touch water rub in and wash

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

December 19, 20060 found this helpful

I have ring around the collar of light blue shirt. I am trying shampoo. I was once told to use comet on spots but I am scared of bleaching out the uniform shirt. What do you think?

Acesnanna from Pacific NW



I used to work outside, and sometimes my shirts would get oil on them. I always used Goop, and they looked new. Now, my husband wears white dress shirts and I use Goop on the collars most of the time. Another good stain remover is Zout, which I use if I run out of Goop. For my kids baseball uniforms, when they get real bad, I will soak them overnight in Oxy-Clean, then spray on Zout. They are the cleanest kids in the game at the beginning!
Good luck! (03/24/2006)

By Amy


Awesome works great! It comes in a spray bottle at the dollar store - think it was once sold on an tv informercial. I used it on a colored knit shirt and it removed the stain but not the color. It is to be diluted 10/1 so a bottle lasts awhile - and hey!! The price is right!! It is good for cleaning ANYTHING - works especially good on grease - and is easy on the hands. (03/24/2006)


Don't Use Comet

Don't use Comet. I use AJAX to clean my sink and I have an orange blouse that has some splashed on, and there are white spots now, which have ruined the look. I will use my white(don't ask why I ever bought some white!!) kitchen washcloths to clean the sink with the AJAX to help bleach out the dirty color. Don't ruin the collar of the shirt with Comet, trust me, you'll always be dissappointed. (03/25/2006)

By Kim

Hand Soap



Shaving Foam

I used plain old fashioned shaving foam, I used it on my husband's best going to Church shirt, it is white.I rubbed it in and then added some directly to the area before I put it in the washing machine.You could test it on a part of the shirt that gets tucked in, or on some other cloth, it is inexpensive.I am almost sure I saw this advertised on one of the public tv channels, I think it was called Haley's Hints. (03/25/2006)

By Kersti


Wisk is fantastic on cleaning ring around the collar when its fresh. Apply the detergent directly on the "ring." I wouldnt use Comet on clothing... You might try Zout, a spot treating product.. However, if you've already put the item in the dryer, it may be too late. You've already baked the stain into the fabric. (03/25/2006)

By Carol in PA


Stanely Home products (Degreaser) works well on almost anything. It is expensive but concentrated and goes a long way. (03/26/2006)

By shopping_addiction_woman


My husband has to wear a shirt and tie to work 6 days a week and his shirts are oxford button-down and he sweats profusely. I was having a real problem with the stains on his shirts until I finally tried Clorox OxyMagic. He wears different colors, all of which are a light shade. I soak them all in the OxyMagic overnight and finish with washing the next day. Be sure to put the OxyMagic in with your soap and fill washer and then agitate until dissolved and then add your clothing. It will take out persperation stains and the salts from it. Good luck!!!! (04/10/2006)

By Dinah K


Try using LAVA soap. It comes in bars sold on the same isle as laundry dertergent. Wet the collar and the bar of LAVA soap. Then rub the soap on the ring and then use an old tothbrush to work it in, scrubbing constantly. Rinse and repeat as needed (09/04/2006)

By julian taylor


I use GoJo hand cleaner. It works so well and won't fade the fabric! (09/12/2006)

By Michael

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By 7 found this helpful
May 8, 2009

Got ring around the collar? I've found that since the stain is basically caused by the same body oils that make our hair greasy, why not use shampoo to clean that greasy stain on our collars? I keep a cheap brand of shampoo over my washer, and pre-treat the collar ring with it. Does a great job! Small sample bottles or ones that have accumulated from many hotel visits are also a good source for the shampoo.

By Sandy from Elon, NC

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