A chocolate stain can be one of the toughest ones to remove, because it is what is called a "combination stain."
There are many ingredients within the chocolate which can cause the stain, and sometimes there is more than one, so you have to deal with many stain removal issues at once when dealing with these stains.
On the other hand, since chocolate has been around a long time, so are the stains it leaves behind, and over the years people have figured out lots of different ways to remove them.
There is no right or wrong way to remove stains, just what works and what doesn't. Therefore, below I've gathered up lots of tips for removing these stains from your clothing and other washable fabrics.
This article is a complement to my main article, within my A to Z Stain Removal Guide, all about chocolate stain removal. That article provides step by step instructions for removing these messy stains, while this one focuses on tips and home remedies that other readers, or people have shared that worked for them.
If you've used a tip or trick successfully for removing these stains, and you don't see it listed already though, I would love it if you shared it with me. You can share your tip for how to remove a stain from chocolate here, or read other tips which have already been submitted, including for other surfaces such as carpet.
Below are some alternate chocolate removal stain tips and home remedies for washable fabrics.
Fight The Cream Stain In Chocolate With Cream
The first of these home remedies is to fight a chocolate stain, which has cream in it, with cream.
You may heard of the idea of fighting like stains with like items before, and that is where this home remedy comes from.
First, rub some heavy cream onto your chocolate stained fabric with a toothbrush, and then let the chocolate stained fabric soak in the cream for about twenty minutes.
Then, launder as usual and often the stain will be gone. (Make sure to check the stained area before throwing it in the dryer, because if it is not completely gone you don't want the dryer's heat to set the stain.)
Another reader also shared this tip about using milk or cream below, and there is more information and ideas about it there.
Make Your Own Chocolate Stain Remover Solution
You can also make your own stain remover for removing the stain.
Just coat this solution on the stained area, let sit for 10-15 minutes (check first in an inconspicuous area of the fabric to make sure it does not harm or discolor the fabric first), and then run through the wash as normal.
Stain Removal Chocolate Tip For Clothing - For Dark And Milk Chocolate
Here are some tips for removing chocolate from clothing, and the first is that you should differentiate between dark chocolate stains and milk chocolate stains.
Both types of chocolate can be treated in much the same way, but there are some differences in treatment because of the difference in the ingredients within the stain.
For both types of stains, first try to remove it with a cleaning solution of 1 cup water and 1 teaspoon of dishwashing liquid.
Then, if that does not work alone, if it's a milk chocolate stain add a few drops of ammonia into the dishwashing liquid solution, while for dark chocolate instead add two tablespoons of white vinegar.
I came across a blog entry recently from The Diaper Diaries (***update - the blog has since shut down ***end update) about how she removed a set chocolate stain out of her white jeans.
This chocolate stain removal tip is even more awesome because her husband had accidentally run the jeans through the dryer, meaning the stain was much more difficult to remove.
What she did was to get a product from the store, in the laundry aisle, called a "water softener," such as Calgon water softener, and then soaked the chocolate stain in a solution of the water softener and water.
She also used pressure to manually loosen the stain and get the water softener solution all through the fabric by pressing on the stain with her hands.
Finally, she washed the jeans again, in cold water, using the stain cycle on her washing machine.
For those of you without such a cycle (such as myself) you can get a similar result by just presoaking the stained item in a tub of laundry detergent and water, or by stopping the washer while it is full of water (and detergent) and let is soak for a while before restarting it (if you have a top loader).
One of the reasons I believe this worked so well for her is that water softener binds with the metals and other items in your water that make it "hard" and which keep detergents from working as well as they otherwise would.
Therefore, the advantage of using a water softener with your laundry is to allow the detergent itself to work more effectively.
Julia sent in this tip for how she removed a chocolate stain with heavy cream.
It's actually the FAT in the milk that soaks the chocolate into the fibers.
I found a suggestion online somewhere to simply soak these stains in high fat milk (I used Creamo).
Seems the milk fats combine and the stain's fats are diluted, so it simply loosens up and floats away.
When I went in to see if it had worked on my (white!) cushion cover, the stain was simply gone. And it was several weeks old.
I gave it a little scrub in the cream at the end, then washed normally. Miraculous.
I wish I could remember where I read it, so I could thank them, and give them the credit for this amazing remedy.
Thanks so much for sharing what worked for you in removing this particularly tough stain Julia.
I'm not sure where you originally read this tip, but I actually have shared that tip on this same page (see above) for how to remove a chocolate stain from clothing and other washable fabric! I'm glad it worked for you.
***Update: There is some disagreement about why, exactly, this tip works, but many people have shared it with me, which must mean it really works well! Here's another reader, Nancy D., who told me something quite similar. Nancy said:
Milk has an enzyme in it that removes chocolate from clothing or fabric.
Simply pour the milk on the spot and rub until the spot it gone, then launder as usual.
(If there is a large amount of chocolate, remove any excess and then pour the milk on it and begin rubbing.)
You may need to repeat more than once.
This can also be used for set in chocolate stains depending on how deeply set in they are.
In addition, has anyone else tried some home remedies for removing stains caused by chocolate and had success? If so, I would love to hear what you did too, so share your tips here, and I'll feature the best ones here on the page.
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I hope you enjoy this gift, and stop by again soon!
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.