How to Clean White Clothes Which Have Turned Blue?

Color-bleed can ruin pristine white clothing and linens quickly and easily, but with some stain-fighting tips and some time spent washing the items it can be easily reversed.

Avoid dye-bleed by sorting your laundry before washing, washing heavily colored clothes inside out and using color catching sheets in the washer. Alternatively, oxygen bleach (according to package instructions) or hydrogen peroxide as safe alternatives to chlorine bleach are other effective strategies for protecting color bleed.

Blot the Stain

If your whites have begun turning blue, taking immediate steps to address the stain is key to preventing dye from setting and making removal simpler. Doing this early could prevent dye from setting and make removal simpler.

If the stain is fresh, begin by blotting it with a paper towel or clean cloth to minimize dye migration into fabric fibers. If the stain has set in already, commercial color-removal products may help; follow their directions closely on their labels.

An alternative effective approach is soaking garments in an oxygen-based pretreatment or bleach solution, vinegar solution or liquid laundry detergent according to care label instructions for their specific garment type. If stain is still visible after soaking, try manually removing it with a rag dipped in rubbing alcohol (for non-red dyes) or hydrogen peroxide (for blood stains). Do not put the clothing into the dryer as this will only set its dye into fabric further.

Soak in Bleach

Bleach can be an effective whitener, but overexposure or at full strength use may cause bleach to yellow fabrics over time. You can avoid yellowing of white garments by washing them separately, using only bleach on white laundry loads and adhering to manufacturer recommendations for dosing as directed, soaking only as long as stated and then thoroughly rinsing clothing afterwards.

If the care label on your blue-stained white clothing indicates it can be bleached, you can perform a bleachability test to see whether their fabric responds favorably. Mix 2 teaspoons of regular chlorine bleach with 1/4 cup water and apply a small amount to an inconspicuous part of fabric; wait 1 minute and blot dry afterwards – if no color bleeds through then simply wash with bleach as usual!

If the blue stain won’t come out with bleach, try using a packaged color remover formulated for use on white clothing or light fabrics. Before beginning use of any such product, ensure it is suitable for your clothing by reading and following its manufacturer’s instructions regarding pre-soaking, cold or warm water immersion, rinsing thoroughly afterwards, etc.


Vinegar is an inexpensive pantry essential with many useful applications, from food preservation and cleaning solutions, to laundry products. For centuries it has been employed as an antimicrobial, deodorizer and laundry booster.

Addition of white vinegar to the rinse cycle can help wash away detergent residue that leaves clothes looking faded and gray, and act as an effective fabric softener, cutting static charges and leaving clothing feeling silky-soft.

Stain removal experts agree that when it comes to dye transfer stains, immediate attention must be taken in order to effectively treat them. Laundry evangelist Patric Richardson recommends spraying garments with either a 1:1 solution of water and vinegar or using commercial products like Mrs. Stewart’s Liquid Bleu or Reckitt’s Crown Blue in order to stop staining from setting in and discoloration from occurring with subsequent washing cycles. In cases of fresh colors he suggests soaking garments in hot vinegar water solution in order to prevent future discolorations occurrence.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide can help remove dye stains from white clothing using its mild bleach-like qualities, making it safe to use on most fabric types. As with any bleach product, however, prior to applying directly onto stained areas it is advisable to conduct a spot test first to test out how well it works on that area – always follow product instructions and try not to overdo it as this may cause its color fade over time.

If blotting and soaking are ineffective in removing dye stains from clothing, try commercial color removers like Carbona or Rit Color Run Remover to spot-treat the garments affected. Mix the solution with water per its label instructions and soak the garments affected with it; after which wash them as instructed on their care labels.

Make a point to organize your laundry by color for maximum protection against color-bleed stains in the future, sorting by whites, darks and colors will keep your clothing looking its best for longer. Add baking soda to the detergent you are using for an added brightening and whitening boost!