Clothing is Bleeding Onto Itself

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

Two color rugby shirt.
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I have a light orange Harley Davidson cotton short sleeve shirt. It has black dye spots on the orange on the right shoulder. Can it ever come out?

dye spots on orange shirt
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    I have a silk shirt which is black and white stripe. On the label it said wash in cold water which I did and the black has run into the white. Is there anyway I can fix this?

    white shirt with black stripes
      AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

      Always try to keep receipts and buy from stores that allow returns in cases like this. You followed the rules, after all. Even if you were able to fix this somehow there's no guarantee it wouldn't happen again the next time you wash it.

      A shirt that isn't washable isn't usable, so get the store to reimburse you.

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      I have washed my daughter's denim jacket which has a cream coloured fur collar. I followed the washing instructions to the letter, but as you can guess, the fur is now blue! Please can anyone help? How can I restore the fur to its original creamy white colour?

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        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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        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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        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

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

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

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        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?

        By XYZ

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        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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        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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        Color safe bleach.

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        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

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

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

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        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

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        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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        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.

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        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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        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

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        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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        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

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        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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        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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        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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        Home and Garden Cleaning Clothing StainsSeptember 4, 2013
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