White Bar Soap To Pretreat Laundry Stains - Easy Peasy!

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On this page I've gathered many uses for bar soap for cleaning, laundry stain removal, and more.

This first started with a single tip from a reader, but has since expanded as I've learned more uses personally, plus from readers telling me even more!

Bar soap uses for cleaning, stain removal and more {on Stain Removal 101} #BarSoap #SoapUses #StainRemovaluse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Use Bar Soap To Pretreat Laundry Stains

This tip first came from a reader, Jessica, who said:

"I've totally dumped my spray and wash pretreater/stain stuff for a bar of white soap.

So far, any bar I've used has worked on serious stains like berries and chocolate and mud.

My kids are rough on clothes and they've ruined so many things with stains I couldn't get out. I just rub on some wet white soap, rub it in good, rinse it and put it in the laundry.

The berry incident kept fading up till I washed and then it was gone. Wish I'd figured this out years ago."

While white bar soap can be a great general pretreater, the soap works especially well on a couple of stains, which will be mentioned in more depth below.

In addition, although Jessica's tip is specifically about white bar soap, you could use just about any laundry bar soap as an easy and cheap pretreater as well.

For example, I've gotten several reviews of Fels Naptha soap which say it has worked well for removing laundry stains in much the same way.

Fels Naptha soap uses

You may also be wondering which brand of white bar soap works best, and I'll tell you below what many readers believe!

Bar soap uses for cleaning, stain removal and more {on Stain Removal 101}

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I've Used Ivory Soap As Backup For Pretreating Stains & For Hand Washing Garments

Many bar soaps will work for the tips provided here on the page, but there are some readers with a strong opinion of which brand or type works best for a variety of things.

tips for using laundry pretreater
Of the non-laundry types of bar soaps that is most often recommended by readers the highest number of votes goes to Ivory for pretreating, and for other uses listed below as well.

Here's just an example of what SR101 reader said:

"I try not to run out of laundry supplies, but occasionally it happens.

I have used Ivory soap to pretreat stains.

In addition, Ivory soap is great for hand washing garments.

I have also used it to pretreat shirt collars and cuffs before washing a load of clothes."

Ivory Bar Soap {Referral Links}

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Ivory Removed Baseball Pants Stains Like A Champ!

Bar soap, as I mentioned, works better for removing certain laundry stains than others.

It tends to work well on mud and dirt stains.

For example, one reader said: "I just tried a bar of Ivory soap and rubbed it into some VERY stubborn stains on my baseball pants. Stains that hadn't come out with bleach!! I wet the soap, rubbed it into the stain for a few seconds and it literally came out! I was amazed! Best "secret" on the market!"

Photo courtesy of betsyweber

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Remove Blood Stains With The Soap Bar Method

Another stain that responds especially well to pretreating with bar soap is blood stains.

One reader said, "The way my mom taught me to remove blood stains from clothing is simply to hand wash the item in the sink with cold water and bar soap.

This always works for me, whether the stain is wet or dry.

Rinse out the most you can with the water, being careful not to transfer the stain to another part of the fabric, and then just scrub with the bar soap, rinse, and then repeat as necessary.

Then I just throw it it in the wash and no more stain."

What Types Of Soap Works Best For Blood Stains?

While lots of readers agree bar soap works wonders for blood stains, there is some disagreement about the best brand to use for this stain.

Along with Ivory two of the ones with the most votes include:

Lava: My grandma was a dressmaker and she liked Lava. Once in awhile she'd accidentally prick her finger or something would have a spot on it. Lava was her lifesaver.

Dove: My Grandmother used Dove beauty bar. It is good for blood and oil stains.

You can get more tips for removing blood stains here.

Tips for how to remove blood stains

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Use Bar Soap To Make Homemade Laundry Soap

Another use for bar soap is as an ingredient in homemade laundry soap.

While some people use laundry bar soaps (such as Fels Naptha, Zote, or Sunlight) for this purpose others use soaps they can find right in the aisle at the store for hand washing.

The most common for this purpose are Ivory and Dove. Some prefer these soaps which have milder or even no scents, instead some of the more scented laundry bar soaps, because of allergies or other reasons.

You can find lots of homemade laundry soap recipes here, including quite a few which use one of these soap bars.

Homemade laundry soap recipes

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Even More Household & Cleaning Uses For Soap Bars

Finally, here are even more cleaning and household uses for this common item.

use soap bar to fix stuck zipper
  • Clean your sliding door tracks with a bar of soap, by rubbing the soap bar in the track and then wiping clean with a rag

  • Unstick furniture drawers by rubbing both the bottom of the drawer and supports lightly, and then they will slide much more easily

  • Unstick a stuck zipper by rubbing the soap bar along the teeth of the zipper

  • Mark a hem with a sliver of soap, instead of using marking chalk. Because it is soap it will wash right out when you're done!

  • Save your soap slivers and add them to your loofah or inside a sponge and have your own practically free foaming body soap

  • Use excess soap slivers, or bar soap, to make liquid hand soap (get the recipe and instructions here)

Do you have any more ways you use a soap bar around your home beside for washing your hands? If so, be sure to tell me below in the comments.

Also, I'd love to hear your opinion about what brand or type of bar works the best for any of these uses.

Ivory Bar Soap {Referral Links}

Uses for bar soap around your home, for cleaning, stain removal and more {on Stain Removal 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

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Comments for Even More Household & Cleaning Uses For Soap Bars

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Cleaning outdoor furniture
by: Nancy Smith

I use a handheld scrub brush, wetting the brush, then rubbing over bar of soap. Then scrub the canvas on outdoor furniture. Glad I found this before I threw out the mildewed chairs and umbrella! Amazing how well it cleans!

Zote stain-removing soap
by: thriftysoul

If you can get Zote soap, a Latin-American favorite, it is great at removing stains. I've even used a box grater to add it as a laundry soap when I ran out of Tide. It worked fine, though not as well as Tide. That said, it's great at stains and smells glorious! I got mine as Save-A-Lot, but I've also seen it at other stores.

Bar soap works
by: Anonymous

I've used bar soap to pretreat or "emergency wash" all my life. I accidentally stumbled upon this trick while camping after suffering a medical situation that resulted in a lot of bloody clothing. I had nothing but a bar of Ivory soap and had to use it. I was shocked to find how well it worked - this has been my go to trick since! And, who doesn't love the smell of Ivory?

by: Molly

I've used Zest soap for years. It works on all food, dirt, blood stains very well. In a pinch I've used soft hand soap too.

baby stains
by: Sue

I always used bar soap on my babies' clothes. Any time they would spit up/ throw up it seemed to leave a stain. I would gather all of their clothes and scrub them with the bar of soap and, voila, stain gone. My babies are now 45, 43, 35, 33 and now it's grandchildren. Time to use Ivory.

Ivory soap
by: Anonymous

My boys get some serious grass stains on their baseball pants and will this soap get it out. I may try it for baseball season, if it works, I will definitely use it, it will be a lot cheaper. We can only try different things that people say.

by: Jane Y.

My friends grandmother always threw her last sliver of soap into a jar in the laundry room. Added a little water and let it sit. She used an old toothbrush to apply the stain remover.

My mom used "yellow" soap - Fels Naptha. We also used "yellow" soap when we thought we might have been in poison ivy.

Soap Dissolves Soap Ring In Tub
by: Angela S.

Simply take a rag, wet it and rub soap in it until is is foamy.

Now clean the tub with it, paying good attention to soap ring.

Wait about 5 minutes come back, use the same rag and wipe down again.

Voila. Soap breaks up soap ring. Who knew?? So stop wasting time on harsh chemicals to clean your tub and switch to dollar store soap. Any soap works so keep cheap ones around for cleaning.

Happy Cleaning :)

bar soap to fill the holes in the walls
by: Laura F.

I have gone as far as using a colored bar soap to match the paint color on my walls and to fill the holes in the walls from nails and pictures etc. It helps to soften the soap by heating it approximately 30 secs to 45 secs (microwaves differ) and rubbing it over the hole made by the nails. You may have to rub it more than once but it fills them nicely and I have painted right over it, but with or without paint the unsightly holes are filled and the walls look better.

For greasy looking spots from dryer sheets
by: Anonymous

My mom taught me to pretreat greasy looking stains that sometimes appear from dryer softening sheets with white bar soap. She used Ivory but I use Dove with no scent added to remove these stains.

Improved results with bar soap if you have hard water
by: Anonymous

Works much better with water softened with washing soda. No precipitation of the soap.

How to make liquid soap using bar soap
by: Heather

This isn't a stain removal tip but I saw a comment that stated that they don't use bar soap, only liquid hand soap and body wash. You can use bar soap as hand soap. All you have to do is grate the bar of soap, combine it in a pot with water and glycerine (optional), heat on medium heat until all flakes are dissolved. Let it cool. Store it in any plastic container (I like the Juicy Juice bottles). Then just refill your empty hand and body wash containers.

Removing blood stains
by: Anonymous

Best thing in the world is hydrogen peroxide. I work in the ER and it can get a little bloody from time to time and this is the best thing in the world to get it out!

White Dial soap
by: Lorie

White Dial soap. It even removes the medical formula my son is on (tends to tint things yellow) and also removed tpn when my son had a cvl broviac.

by: Inga

Ivory soap works like a champ!

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Hi, I'm Taylor, a busy mom with 3 kids, so I have lots of hands on experience with house cleaning, laundry and my fair share of spots, spills and other messy catastrophes. Thanks for visiting my site.

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CAUTION: This website is provided for informational purposes only. It is provided as is, without warranties or guarantees. Some stains and messes just won't come out, and are permanent. Further, some cleaning methods can harm your item, so if what you want to clean or launder is sentimental or expensive call a professional. See disclaimer of liability for more information.