Setting Dye on Clothing and Fabric

Whether your clothes are brand new or you have done some dyeing, it is important to set the color. This guide is about setting clothing dye.


September 15, 2014 Flag
1 found this helpful

Many people recommend either vinegar or salt, but no one ever says "how much" to put in a washer load or even in a big pot. Will some one please give us that information in a usable form? Do you put in a cup or a whole gallon bottle of vinegar or a whole box of salt?

By Karahana

July 8, 20161 found this helpful

How do you set dye in fabric?

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July 14, 20160 found this helpful

April 26, 2016 Flag
1 found this helpful

How do you prepare a color guard product at home? I want to make a product that would prevent the dyes from mixing with water and spreading into other white clothes.

I was told vinegar with glycerin is an ideal combination. Can anybody help?

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Anonymous Flag
May 31, 20160 found this helpful


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December 13, 2004 Flag
1 found this helpful

When you wash dark clothes for the first time - use cold water and put salt in the water. The salt helps set the color. When I want to brighten dark clothes after they have been washed several times, I repeat the procedure (salt in cold water when washing).


September 25, 20070 found this helpful

I bought Dark Brown Corduroy to trim a suede jacket and make a pair of slacks. I presoaked the material in salt and vinegar and then washed the material, but the dark dye is still bleeding from the cuffs of the coat onto my cream turtle neck sweater.

Is there any way to stop the bleeding or will I just toss away the material and try another material?

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February 12, 20080 found this helpful

August 7, 2015 Flag
0 found this helpful

I've worn this black knit dress twice. Every time I wear it the dye rubs off, onto nail color, fingers, and skin. Help! It's awful. What can I wash this dress in to prevent this?

August 9, 20150 found this helpful

Table salt will also set some dyes. If vinegar doesn't work. Don't use both at the same time.

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June 17, 20160 found this helpful

July 31, 2008 Flag
2 found this helpful

Use 2 Tbsp. turpentine and 1 small handful of salt. Pour boiling water over this mixture. Put garment or cloth in and saturate. Let it soak until the water gets cold.

By Anne from Fernley, NV

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August 1, 20080 found this helpful

I'm afraid of the turpentine staining the fabrics. I think I have heard of salt used in holding color. Any comments on the turpentine? Thanks!

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January 5, 20160 found this helpful

June 11, 2013 Flag
1 found this helpful

I brought a pair of flannelette sheets, they have been washed twice.
When you sweat at night the dye comes out on your skin. Any idea how to stop it?

By Val S from Deception Bay, Qld

June 13, 20130 found this helpful

In my experience: If you wash the sheets by themselves in hot water setting of your clothes washer and add a cup of vinager to the cycle. Dry them in the hottest dryer setting you have, then it will set the dye in the fabric. Please let us know if it works for you.

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January 30, 2005 Flag
0 found this helpful

Does anyone know how to stop color bleeding from clothes when washing them. Is there any way to stabilize the colored fabric so it will no longer run? Hoping someone has answer for me and thanks in advance if you do.

Dinnie from Tampa

November 11, 20080 found this helpful

Hi, I have a dress that has 3 colours on it. The base is white and it has one line of red fabric and one line of black fabric across it. The red from the fabric runs and the dress has turned pink. I have tried soaking it in cold water twice for days already but the colour worsens . I've tried most of your advice (ie salt vinegar and cold water treatment) but it has been stained to dark pink! I need help!

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December 14, 20080 found this helpful

October 24, 2013 Flag
0 found this helpful

I've just bought a red wool and cashmere coat, with a patterned, red polyester lining. I didn't notice the disclaimer label, when I bought it, stating you should not get it moist or damp, avoid contact with light fabrics, upholstery, or accessories. What can I do to prevent it bleeding? I really like the coat.

By Rosemary from Nottingham, UK

October 26, 20130 found this helpful

If you really like the coat and think its worth it, why not change the lining to a fabric which wont bleed? I know some dry cleaners in the u.k. would do the alteration for you for a fee. if you know how to sew yourself, then just unpick the lining and use it as a pattern.

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November 9, 20130 found this helpful

April 14, 2013 Flag
0 found this helpful

I recently bought a red cardigan and when I wore it, it transferred the red dye onto my white t-shirt. I have managed to remove the red dye from the t- shirt, but I am wondering is there a way I can stabilise the dye in the cardigan to prevent it transferring to my other clothing when worn together.

By yvie

Anonymous Flag
May 17, 20160 found this helpful

Shout colour catchers

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May 17, 20160 found this helpful

February 13, 2014 Flag
0 found this helpful

I'm knitting an afghan for my grandson who's going to Michigan State. The colors are dark green and white. The yarn is 75% acrylic and 25% wool. Is there anything I can do before I give it to him to prevent the dark green from running?

By Betty

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March 5, 20140 found this helpful

I do this with all my cottons... I think it would work for wool if you take the necessary precautions in drying it. I rinse all my cotton fabrics in cold salt water and then rinse the salt away in cold water then dry in the dryer. My mama did this with all my fabric she used to make my school clothes when I was a little kid. I am allergic to wool so I don't use it but I'm sure you can move from my cold salt rinse to whatever method you use to dry it.

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July 23, 20140 found this helpful

March 3, 2015 Flag
0 found this helpful

My daughter bought a material school bag from a surf shop. It is yellow. The problem is that from sweating, the yellow from the straps has come onto her white school shirt. How will I stop the yellow dye from the bag staining her shirt?

By Kat

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March 4, 20150 found this helpful

Check this out:

and read the reviews! I have not used this product but it sounds like it might work. I have used the old vinegar and salt tricks in the past... worked some time, not so much other times. The kind of fabric matters I think. Good luck!

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July 17, 2013 Flag
0 found this helpful

How do you keep the colour in the shirt when you wash it? Is there something you can spray on it to hold it in the fabric?

By Ellen S

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July 19, 20130 found this helpful

The first time you wash it, wash in cold water with a cup of salt and a cup of white vinegar. That should set the color.

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November 5, 2014 Flag
0 found this helpful

I received an old sweater that was my grandfather's. It was originally white and his mother dyed it red, I'm sure with some kind of cheap home-dyeing kit, maybe Rit.

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