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Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

My daughter has a problem with her laundry. She randomly gets

bleach stains on her wash. She has stopped using any bleach and

fabric softener and it still happens. Does anyone have any ideas

what might cause it? It doesn't seem that the machine would hold

bleach for months. Very strange.

Thanks for your help,
Sally from South Berwick, ME


Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

Had this trouble with several of my face cloths. Dark colors

ended up with light blotches on them. Turns out it was from skin

cream with a hydrogen peroxide type of chemical in it. Put the

facecloth in the hamper once and apparently it even transferred


onto a blouse as it ended up with a lighter blotch on it, too.


By Tracy

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

Is she cleaning with anything containing bleach? One time I

cleaned my stove with Soft Scrub and it had bleach in it, and

when I threw it in with my clothes it bleached them.

A lot of items have chemicals in them that can bleach clothing,

maybe she can watch what chemicals she uses (if any) and pin-

point the problem.

Good luck! (03/21/2006)

By profile=thr721229">katieandjeffy

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

My daughter had this problem (still does). I figure it's the

face creams or perfumes she uses. The stains are mostly up

around the neck area on shirts, and on pillow cases, and the

tops of her sheets. (03/21/2006)

By profile=thr523346">marinewife5

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

Occasionally this has happened to me. I have found that this

blotching can occur when laundry soap goes directly on the

clothing versus putting the water and soap in before any

clothing. Also, some detergents have a "whitener" in them that

can cause blotches when put directly on the clothing.


By Sheri

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry


This sometimes happens with my daughter's tees, I'm beginning to

think it could be from one of her many hair styling products.


By yankeesgryl

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I am the daughter! So I stopped using fabric softener and

switched to All Free, no dyes or perfumes. Also I started

wearing gloves when I clean. I am happy to report that no stains

for 3 months or more! (04/03/2007)


Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I heard from my neighbor the other day that some newer washers

that have a dispenser for the bleach. Some of them do not

completely empty out so they can be dripping bleach onto the

next loads. If you use a bleach dispenser or have this type of

washer, it's a possibility. Run only water through your bleach

dispenser for a load or two and see if it makes a difference.


By profile=ver1000140">ThriftyFun

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

So I only use All Free and Clear, no fabric softener and I clean

in one outfit. I am happy to report that almost 6 months have

gone by and no more random bleach stains, Woo hoo! (07/23/2007)

By Barbara

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

We too had the same mystery. Finally I realized it was not only

our son's acne wash, but also the Scrubbie Bubbles used to clean

tubs and our jacuzzi. Now I leave a special laundry container

for these items and the problem has gone bye bye! (12/11/2007)

By Mary

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I have this very same problem. It's sending me mad. It started

first with our towels, my husband and I had nice brown towels,

and they all started to get random orangey bleach marks. Then,

it was the hand towels, face towels and even my pillowcase and

the top of my sheets. I have since noticed some spots on our

carpet in our bedroom (in front of our mirror) and on some of

our clothing. I went and stayed at my mum's house one night and

she rang me up the next day to tell me that I had bleached her

towels too!

Having read what everyone has posted, I am convinced it has

something to do with me using Clearasil cream and/or a few face

washes. I thought maybe it was Johnson's Holiday skin, but other

people I know use it and they don't have any problems. I too

don't use bleach products around the house and hadn't really

started using any new products, except for Clearasil. I think

this could be it for me. The Clearasil is going in the bin. It's

wrecked too many of our nice towel sets. (02/18/2008)

By Abby

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I think it could also be from toothpaste. When you wipe your

mouth of toothpaste on the towel and then it sits there until

you clean the towel. (02/23/2008)

By Melanie

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

Had the same exact problem and just figured out for sure what it

is. The cleaning spray I use in my apartment has bleach in it.

So, I could have been getting the spray directly on my clothes

while cleaning and secondly (definitely more likely) is after I

clean I throw the rag I used into the hamper with my clothes! As

a test I just sprayed some of the cleaner onto an old black

sock, sure enough, it was instantly covered with the orange

stain. I feel like a complete idiot now, but at least I know how

to put an end to this. (02/28/2008)

By Jeff

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I always use the same creams, detergents, etc., but my husband

found a large bleach-like stain on my tan pillowcase the other

morning. The only thing that has changed is that I had inpatient

surgery and was medicated. That night I experienced night sweats

partially due to a heating pad I was using. My thoughts were

leaning more towards the ingredients in the body/shampoo wash

that the hospital provided. (03/15/2008)

By Jennifer

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

While having lunch with a coworker she mentioned that her


dermatologist told her to keep the prescription face cream away

from color clothes like towels and pillow cases. I have been

having that problem the the towels in the girls' bathroom only.

Now I know. There is Proactiv in there and prescription cream.


By profile=thr815886">nbruegirls

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

My goodness. Finally, after years of random, bleached out spots

on towels. I Googled the problem, generally it is liquid soaps

of any kind. I recently visited a friend's home and found the

towel I had used the night before after washing my face was

"bleached" out in spots. Since the towel wasn't washed in my

home, we looked at what I had used. Simple liquid soap we all

buy for the convenience and use in lieu of bar soap. To test our

theory we put it on a new towel and washed it. Produced the

white bleach spots. I have gotten rid of all liquid soaps and

with them went the problem. (07/17/2008)

By Rosemary

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

Same problem here! I'm almost positive my last episode of

bleached towels came from my hand soap "Method" located in the

bathroom. Don't wash your hands with that stuff and dry your

hands on a nice towel. That's the only thing that it could be.


By Ashley

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

So here it is, and I can say this with certainty:

For years I have gotten those random bleach stains. After

finding this post, I did some experiments. Here's the findings:

Laundry Detergent: Yes, this can cause the stains. If you

have a detergent with "color safe bleach" or a "whitener", be

sure to shake the liquid before using, as you can get a

concentration of the whitener in a cap of soap. You can also add

the clothes AFTER you fill the washer with water and detergent,

to dilute the soap issue. If you use powder detergent, I highly

recommend the latter.

Acne medication: Absolutely the highest risk, however I think

there should be an addendum to this statement (mention it

below): Almost all the acne cleansers that are "not" salicylic

acid will cause the problem. Proactiv and Clean and Clear are

notorious. The experiment I did to test the theory was as


I used Clean and Clear in the shower, then made certain (on

an older towel) to dry my face only in one particular area of

the towel. Sure enough, that area proved to have stains upon

drying. To further test this, I asked a roommate to use his acne

product under the same circumstances (area of towel), and the

results, not surprisingly were the same (his Proactiv actually

seemed to make the stains worse).

Now, what about that addendum I mentioned earlier? Be wary of

antibacterial agents in your soaps. Hand soaps with many

antibacterial agents seem to cause the same result. Same

experiment as above was done to come to this conclusion. My

example comes, like a previous person mentioned, from the

"Method" brand foaming hand soap from Target.

I feel that the producers of these products should be held

liable for the damages caused, as no warnings, written nor

implied, are ever given.

I hope this helps people avoid the problem. Do what you can

in your own mode of living to accommodate these issues. In

talking to my doctor, he actually said that the whole

"antibacterial" agents in hand soap are a sham. Soap, in it's

most basic form is anti-bacterial by nature. I have switched my

handsoap to a nice smelling diluted mixture of dish soap

(Palmolive is great on the hands) and water. It's worked great,

and no more stained hand towels. I switched acne cleansers to

ones which use salicylic acid as the active ingredient, and I

always dilute my laundry detergent now, in addition to agitating

the bottle to make certain any whitening and brightening agents

are mixed well before use. Since those implementations, no

problems. (10/12/2008)

By Jason



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Laundry" />

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

The one common denominator is the fabrics, which I think is the

problem. Whether towels or clothing, it never used to be a

problem, so what is different now? I think it's the overseas

manufacturing processes and dyes. My aunt died 2 years ago and

I got a beautiful set of rose colored decorated towel,

washcloth, and handtowels. I use the same products on my skin

that I use on my Ralph Lauren towels from Kohl's and the color

stays true with no spots on the old set, while the newer ones

are ruined. The towels, while put away and not previously used,

were made in the USA in 1987, while the Lauren and others I've

had with similar spots were made in India and other overseas

countries. I've always had oily skin and used benzoyl peroxide,

astringents, and Retin-A for years also, liquid hand soaps and

whitening toothpaste. It's only been in the last several years

the problem has shown up. The same is true for pillowcases, old

versus new. I've also had problems with sunscreen I use on my

neck turning my collars yellow. I think the alcohol in that and

colognes is the reason. These things never used to happen to me.

I really think it's all the overseas, cheap labor products.


By profile=thr886761">kshope

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

My sister who is the authority for all my questions said it's

certain dyes that react to acidic oily skin, that bleach it that

pinky orange color, seen mostly on blues, browns, and khaki. I

once stood in acid rain in London in a khaki top and the

raindrops turned my top into orange polka dots. Now I know

there is nothing that can be done if the dyes are not set by a

process which is why your old towels are fine and the new ones

made overseas aren't. They obviously don't use the needed

process anymore. My blues ones are all ruined and my green ones

are fine. Anyone know if something can be added to the first

washing that would set these dyes properly so it wouldn't happen

later? (06/01/2010)

By profile=thr507550">Anonymous

Random Bleach Stains on Laundry

I have to agree with the folks that concluded the dyes in newer

towels (almost invariably made overseas) are inherently

unstable. I experimented with brand new hand towels that had

never been washed, and was able to produce the bleach stain

problem within a couple of days. It never happens on the towels

I bought 15 to 20 years ago (yes, I still have some of those.)


I don't use any medications containing benzoyl peroxide. I do

use daily sun screens, and I think the sunscreen left on my

hands may be the culprit, as I've seen the same problem with

sunscreen bleaching some of my less expensive (made overseas)

cotton tops.

Bottom line: the dyes used in towels are no longer stable. I

may give up and simply start buying white towels. Discouraging.


By profile=thr240332">djfoster


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