Clothing is Bleeding Onto Itself

When washing clothes, colors may bleed. This guide is about how to prevent or fix color transferred to pieces of clothing.

Two color rugby shirt.
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Question: Clothing Bleeding Onto Itself

I washed a white piece of clothing with red thread embroidery and all the red bled onto the white, so now it is a shade of pink. Another piece of clothing that I washed had a maroon lace, the clothing itself is a self-print light beige, and the maroon lace bled onto the shirt. So now there are light maroonish color stains below the lace. (I washed both clothes separately).

I wanted to know will the boiling water and bleach method work on these shirts or will it completely ruin my clothes? Any other suggestions?


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Most Recent Answer

By jean leiner 15 411 Flag

May 8, 2011

Try washing the items by themselves with 2 or 3 Shout Color Catcher Sheets, available in the laundry aisle at the supermarket. This product has saved several garments for me.

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Question: Red and White Striped Dress

By linda Lucey 1

I have a red and white striped dress that has turned out pink and red when washed! How can I get it back to red and white again? Would appreciate any help.

Linda from Sydney, Australia

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Most Recent Answer

By Sheryl (Guest Post) 02/13/2007 Flag

Sorry, I had this happen to a black and white dress of mine once. Unfortunately, it was ruined. Nothing worked. I was told it was a defect in the fabric - the manufacturer did not set the colors properly when making the fabric. My dress did say it was washable, so after trying everything, I was able to return it to the store "as defective" and got a refund. It was a bummer because I absolutely LOVED that dress too!

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Question: Red Dye Ran in the Wash

Red and white morph suit.I recently brought a red and white morph suit and the white areas have turned slightly red/pink. Is there any way I can remove the red/pink from the white areas completely? Please respond as soon as possible as I need to use the morph suit for Friday.

By Matt

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Most Recent Answer

By toddr777 1 11/22/2014 Flag

My little girl had a Santa Suit outfit that was dark red with the little fuzzy white collar. The red ran onto the white. I took a bottle of lemon juice out of the fridge, saturated a cotton ball and began to go over the collar with the cotton ball. I didn't saturate the collar but it was very damp.

I noticed that some of the red came off onto the cotton ball but most did not. I let it sit for about 5 minutes and got some no-name brand Oxyclean powder and mixed it in some water. With an old toothbrush, I scrubbed the collar with the Oxyclean solution and the collar was saturated when I was through. I noticed the red on the collar had turned brown.

I then put it in the washer with a color catcher and regular old Tide. I did cold water for an extra long normal cycle. It took all the red stain out of the collar without doing any damage to the rest of the top.

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Question: Clothing is Bleeding onto Itself

By Lyn 1

I have a jacket and a vest made of 86% nylon and 14% spandex that I soaked in cold water and Epsom salt before washing. The black bled into the pink and it has left spots, lots of them on the garments. I washed them in cold water with no fabric softener after the soaking, but the color still bled. What can I do now?

By Lyn from Saskatchewan, Canada

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Most Recent Answer

By Sheila 1 10/30/2010 Flag

Ok, I came home from a cruise, finally pulled the pile of whites out of the suitcase and into the wash, not noticing the fuchsia tank top in the "mix." The 9 pcs. of whites turned so pink that I was surprised the fuchsia top was still bright and colorful!

Re-Wash with bleach - no luck
Oxiclean (which I had) - no luck
Two boxes of Rit Dye remover - no luck

After staring at the pile of wet pink clothing for 2 days, figuring I had now set the dye, I pulled out my Cauldron, started boiling the water, added bleach.

#1 - Lightweight cotton shorts - Turned white before my eyes!

#2 - Jean weight shorts - took a little longer and more stirring

#3 - Tank top with black/silver sequins and other bangles - SUCCESS! PLUS the sequins, bangles, and beads still sparkle!

Nine pieces of whites SAVED!

Note: The water temp is important - the heavy shorts were not responding, but thanks to a post in here, I turned the burner back on, the warmer it got the faster the pink disappeared.

Also, from a post - change the water and bleach for each "load." I did use quality Clorox - newly purchased. Bleach starts losing its strength with age.

Thank you everyone!

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Question: Shirt Bleeding Onto Itself

By Ubani Fwesh-niqqur J. 1

striped shirtI've got a multi coloured shirt with the following colours; white, red, grey, and dark blue. After washing the shirt, the red and blue colours bled into the white and now my shirt is ruined. Please I need your help.

By Jesse

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Most Recent Answer

By Sandy F. 1 3 03/01/2015 Flag

Try rewashing it again this time putting salt in ur water. It will stop the colors from running, and hopefully take out the stains.

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Question: Clothing Bled on Itself

By Esther W. 1

Help! I made my daughter's pink and white uniform tie-dye on the white. She has 2 tournaments this weekend. It cost $200 and no way can I buy one as it can take weeks. What can I do?

By Esther W.

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Most Recent Answer

By cathy 2 61 10/30/2014 Flag

Rit dye used to make a product called color removal, that may work.

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Question: Clothing Dye Bled Onto Itself

Dye bled onto yellow areas.How do I get navy colour out of outfit that has run into a yellow part of the outfit? Please help; it's my daughter's cheer dance outfit. Thanx.

By Karen

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Most Recent Answer

By Robyn D. 1 12/23/2013 Flag

Color safe bleach.

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Question: Dress Bled on Itself

When I soaked my new white and black striped dress in cold water using Surf xcel some part of the whitish part was covered with the black colour of the dress itself. How do I clean it now? It's new and my fav dress. Pleass help me as soon as possible. Arpita

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By Gwennie 4 Flag

August 9, 2013

This sound like a fashion problem. If it's white, don't be afraid bleach it, girl :) Hope this helped.

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Question: Swimsuit Bled Dye Onto Itself

By the.baumgartens 2

How do I remove the red that bled onto the white of my daughter's swimsuit? It's a Nike red and white striped tankini. She wore it in the ocean and pool, then soaked it in cold water. The water turned pink and the red bled onto the white. After letting it air dry, I then washed it on delicate in cold water with a mild detergent (Ecos, coconut based) and a Shout Color Catcher sheet. The bleed did not improve. The red is now dark pink and the white is light pink. Any suggestions?

By Deborah B.

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Most Recent Answer

By Joan 13 1,479 Flag

July 14, 2012

Shout Color Catcher isn't for removing color that has already bled onto another color, it is to prevent it in the first place. If the color is even don't worry about it, let it look like two shades of pink. Other wise carefully use bleach on the parts that are supposed to be white. But by doing that you run the risk of getting bleach on the colored part.

If wearing it in the ocean and the pool didn't cause the colors to bleed, then your daughter soaked it in more than just cold water. Myself, rather than have it soaking I would have given it a quick rinse and and left it to dry. I am also real leery about buying red and white combos.

However I have had a red sweatshirt with a white inset in the v-neck for about six years and have always used the color catcher sheets when I launder it and the red looks like new and there is no sign of bleed on the white.

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Question: Clothing Dye Bleed onto Lighter Part of Dress

I have a dress that has a black skirt attached to a white lace top. I stupidly left the dress to soak over night in order to remove a make up stain from the white lace, but the black skirt of the dress bled onto the white lace leaving it a very light shade of purple. Would a color safe bleach be safe to use on the white lace? Also, the dress has since dried so I have a feeling the dye has now set. Is there any hope of saving my dress?
Thanks :-)

By Bec

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Most Recent Answer

By jean leiner 15 411 Flag

May 16, 2012

Did the dress air dry or dryer dry? If dryer dried, the stain may be set. Since it is unwearable as is, you could try soaking it in a solution of powder dishwasher detergent and lukewarm water. Mix 1 cup detergent into enough water to keep the dress submerged overnight. Weigh it down with a plate on top in the container if needed. Then rinse well and air dry. If it helped but was not completely successful, repeat.

If you don't have a dishwasher, the el cheapo brand from the dollar store works fine. You also could try laundering the dress as usual by itself with 2-3 Shout Color Catcher Sheets. The box says use 1 but I have found that more seem to work better. This product can be found in the detergent aisle at the supermarket. Hope one of these helps.

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Question: Dye Transferred in the Wash

I just washed for the first time a red sweatshirt with a white embroidered motif, and the colour has run from the red into the white. Can I rescue it, and how can I prevent it happening with the other sweatshirts which are similar (one violet and one jade) also with white embroidered motif, before I risk washing them?

By Jenny G

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Most Recent Answer

By Robyn Fed 394 1,240 Flag

February 11, 2012

I found this link. I hope it helps you get the dye out of the fabric!

Run cold water in a sink and place a tablespoon of all-fabric powdered bleach in the water. Make sure to use a powdered bleach that works with all colors and fabrics

Read more: How to Remove Transferred Dye From Fabric | ... ferred-dye-fabric.html#ixzz1m8SVMAqz

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Question: Dress Dye Bled Onto Itself

By Koushi 1

For silk cotton material dresses, dry wash can be replaced by a shampoo wash. Usually we do that, but this time while we washed a silk cotton dress (Chudi top) the dark dye mixed with the lighter dye. The dress color is magenta and sandal. After shampoo wash we seen that the magenta dye color mixed with the sandal dye color. Is there any chance to recover the actual sandal dye color by removing magenta dye color? The dress material is silk cotton where normal wash is not applicable.

closeup of dye bleed damage
    Dress Dye Bled Onto Itself

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    Question: Shirt Bled Onto Itself

    I have a top with red and green colors, but after washing the green color bled onto the red color. Now I can't wear it. Is there any solution to remove the green color from red color?

    By Priya from India

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    Question: Clothing Bled Onto Itself

    I have a black and orange top, the black has gone onto the orange when I washed it. How can I get it out?

    By Marie P

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    Question: Fabric Dye Bled on Clothing

    So my mother washed my favourite sports bra for dancing. The original color was the inside was purple and the outside was pink, but now the purple has run into the pink and it looks awful. Does anyone have and suggestions on how to fix it i'd really appreciate it thanks!

    By Chloe

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    Question: Clothing Dye Bled in the Wash

    Woman wearing tunic.I washed my new tunic top from India with like colors in cold water. The tunic top is cream with hot pink embellishments. The hot pink ran and stained the cream on the top. I have not dried in the dryer. What can I do to get the stains out?

    By Karen M

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    Question: Blue on Cheer Shirt Bled Onto White and Gold

    I washed my daughter's cheer shirt that is white and has blue and gold trim. The blue bled on the white and the gold. How do I get the blue of the white as well as off the gold?

    By Cher from Orange Park, FL

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    Question: Black Has Bled Into the White on Top

    Black and white sleeveless top.I hand washed this top, but have found the black dye ran into the white and I can no longer get it out. I have been spraying with lemon spray, but there is no change. It is my favourite top too, please help!

    By Kelsea from New Zealand

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    Question: Clothing Dye Ran in the Wash

    By Verna Washington 1

    I have a black and white top, the cuffs of the sleeves are white. It said to wash it in cold water. I did and the black ran into the cuffs. Does anyone know how this can be fixed? It is a new top.

    By Verna W. from Ontario, Canada

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    Question: Dress Dye Bled on Itself

    I have a blue dress with white collar and cuffs. I washed this item and the white has turned grey. How do I get it white again?

    By Carole from England

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    Question: Red Trim on Sweatshirt Bled Onto White Parts

    Closeup of pockets.I have a moderately heavy zip-hoody sweatshirt (80% cotton, 20% polyester) with a white body and red sleeves, hood, and piping on the pockets. There are just a couple of spots and bleeding along the collar, as well as, severe bleeding along the pockets.

    If I use RIT will it cause more red dye to be extracted and therefore further stain the white portions? Is the same true for the lemon method? I've only found tips for all-white garments needing dye removal.

    My girlfriend washed it without me (I was going to wash cold delicate and hang to dry) on regular cycle with warm water and then normal heat in the dryer! But it has only been washed once. What can I do to fix the white portion? This is a NFL team sweatshirt that is no longer made! =[

    Thanks in advance for you advice.

    By Mady

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    Question: Jacket Bled on Itself When Washed

    I hand washed a dry-clean only jacket. It is beige trimmed with black and I think the black ran over parts of the jacket. How can I get these out?

    By Ruth G

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    Question: Dress Dye Bled on Itself

    I have a light blue dress with red cherries on it and the red ran when it was hanging to dry.What do I do? I didn't realize it was "dry clean only" and I hand-washed it in cold water. How do I get the bleed to go away without making it bleed more?

    By Shannon G

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    Question: Colored Dyes on Jacket Bled onto Each Other

    I have a multi-colored jacket that I washed and the yellow and red bled onto each other. Any way that I can save my beautiful jacket?

    By Carolyn M from Cambridge, MD

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    Question: Color Bled on Black and White Stripe Swimsuit

    I washed my new black and white stripe swimsuit in the sink with cold/warm water and Woolite. I laid it flat to dry and the next morning the black had run onto the white stripes all over the front of the suit. Is there anything I can do? I did not put this in the dryer and followed the washing instructions except for the warm water part. Oops. Help! The suit is nylon/spandex.

    By April B.

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    Question: Clothing Dye Bled on White Jacket

    I have a Columbia omni-shield pink and white jacket. It is nylon and the lining is polyester. How do I get color out where the pink bled onto the white body? I washed it according to the directions in cold water, using powder detergent.

    By hlh from Holts Summit, MO

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    Home and Garden Cleaning Clothing StainsSeptember 4, 2013
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