How To Wash Greasy Clothes

How To Wash Greasy Clothes – Plenty Of Methods To Try

There is no doubt if you work in a greasy industry like a chef or a mechanic, grease stains are nothing new for you.

They may come easily, but they are in no way easy to get rid of.

If you are sick of putting on greasy clothes or stuck with stains all over your work clothes, there are a few methods you can try to have them looking grease and stain-free.

Even if the stains are well set in, there is still hope to get rid of them. There are commercial cleaning products and even household ingredients that have been known to work on tough grease stains.

All you need to do is to find a cleaning treatment that has the right degreasing properties and plenty of elbow grease from you. Check out the hints and tips for cleaning greasy clothes below!

How To Wash Greasy Work Clothes?

When it comes to washing greasy work clothes, one of the best cleaners is just your basic dishwashing liquid. This stuff is formulated to dissolve grease on your dishes, and it works for grease on clothing also. Dawn dish soap is the best for greasy clothing, and all you need to do is apply a squirt of detergent onto the stain and rub it in gently, then let it sit for 15 minutes, then wash it in a normal cycle using hot water. The stain should be gone, but if some still remain, you can repeat the process. Make sure your work clothes are safe for washing in hot water!

Washing Greasy Clothes In Dishwashing Liquid

Yes, you read that right. Dish soap is great for removing greasy residues and stains. The good thing about this fact is that you can use it on just about all types of fabric.

Apply a generous amount of soap to the stain, and using a small brush, you can scrub the stain working in a circular motion.

If the spot seems to go dry, you can apply some more detergent. Let the fabric sit out of the sun for half an hour; then, you can put it into your washing machine and use the warmest cycle it has.

It is best to wash greasy clothes on their own to avoid spreading the residues and stains to other clothing in the same wash.

For this method to work, you need to try and find a dish soap that is designed for grease residues and stains, as these contain a bacterium that actually eats the grease and oil.

Can I Use Baby Powder?

Baby powder can work well on grease stains, but you need to apply it almost right after the stain occurs.

Due to baby powder being so fine in consistency, it works well at getting into the fibers and works away at absorbing the grease.

You want the powder to soak into the stain for around 15 minutes, then brush it off with a soft brush.

The clothing can then be put into the washing machine on a cold cycle. Once the clothing has dried, you should not be able to see any sign of the stain.

Using Chalk For Grease Stains

Chalk works the same way the baby powder does. If you don’t have access to baby powder, white chalk will do the same thing.

The chalk will get into the crevices of the clothing materials soak up the grease, so it’s easy to remove.

Just crush some white chalk and apply it to the stain until it is covered, then let it sit for 15 minutes, then wipe it off.

Again, like above, wash in cold water on a normal cycle and don’t tumble dry.


This comes under the fine powder again, and it works well to soak up grease from clothing.

It can be used on all types of material and only requires you to sprinkle over the stain and then let it sit for 15 minutes, then brush off well.

This method requires washing with cold water.

Rubbing Alcohol And Salt

This is a solution that works well on work clothes that are thicker, like linen or denim.

You need to mix in three parts of rubbing alcohol and one part of salt together and apply to the grease stain.

Rub the mixture in well so it can penetrate all the fibers. Soak the clothing for 15 minutes, then wash the clothing as normal.

Adding Vinegar To Your Washing Cycle

If your clothes are not stained but do have a greasy residue on them, white vinegar works well.

Vinegar is inexpensive and chemical-free and works well to dissolve grease.

Instead of using your regular detergent this time, you can add ½ cup distilled vinegar straight into your washing machine with the greasy clothing and wash as normal.

If you find the clothes are still a little on the greasy side, add the clothing to your washer again and do a rinse cycle with half a cup of vinegar.

Using Baking Soda

You can mix one cup of normal household baking soda into a gallon of fresh, clean water. Stir well until the baking soda has dissolved.

Add the piece of clothing to the solution and ensure they are well soaked.

Add more water if the clothes are not completely covered.

The clothing can be soaked in the solution overnight and washed as normal the next day.

Remove Grease With A Dry-Cleaning Solvent

You can use a dry-cleaning solvent to get rid of greasy stains on your clothing.

These are mostly iron-on or spray liquids that can be put straight on the stain before washing.

These are expensive but are known to work right away due to them being a commercial-grade cleaner designed for greasy clothes.

The stuff can be applied to the clothes 10 minutes before washing as usual. Ensure you wash the clothes alone to avoid spreading the greasy stains.

How To Remove Set In Grease Stains From Clothing

There are a few great ways that are easy to use and work well on greasy clothing. Let’s check them out.


Funny isn’t it, but hairspray actually works for greasy residues, and it works well on those stains that have been let go a while.

Apply the hairspray generously to the stain by spraying a paper towel that is sitting over the stain.

You can soak the stain for half an hour and then wash it normally.


While this might not sound like a good option, Cheeze-whiz is a popular grease remover.

All you need to do is to cover the stain in the cheese whiz and then rub in circular motions for a minute, then pop it into the washing machine.

You will only need to wash the clothes on a normal single wash cycle.

Using Shampoo For Greasy Clothing

Shampoo works well with removing grease and oil build-up from your hair, and the best thing is it works well for work clothes too.

All you need to do is add your clothing to a bucket and fill it with water, then apply a few squirts of shampoo and gently stir.

Allow the clothing to soak for a few hours, then wash as normal.

If you want to just treat a grease stain, you can add a squirt of shampoo directly to the stain and rub it in, let it sit for 15 minutes, then wash as you normally do.

Clothing is best to be air-dried.

Using Waterless Mechanic Soap

Waterless mechanic soap is a great detergent that many mechanics use to remove the grease and oil stains on their clothing.  

The powder just needs to be applied to the greasy areas and left to soak in for an hour, then repeat the process for the best results.

The clothing can be washed as normal and allowed to air dry in the shade.

Simple Green Cleaning Solution Works Well

Simple green is a great cleaning mixture that can be used for all sorts of household and commercial cleaning tasks. It works well for greasy stains that have been left too long without treatment.

You only have to tip some liquid onto the stain and leave it to settle in for half an hour.

You can add more if that amount hasn’t covered the stain properly. Wash on a normal cycle, and air dry only.

Try Some WD-40

WD-40 is used for grease and oil stains removal.

All you need to do is to apply some WD-40 onto the stain and leave it to sit for half an hour.

Once the solution is all soaked in, you can then wash your clothing right away, you want to wash your clothing in cold water, and air dry only.

If the stain is still visible, you can repeat the process until it has completely disappeared.

Using Coca-Cola

Coca-cola is used for cleaning things like toilets, dirty showers and ovens.

The soda contains cleaning qualities that have the ability to dissolve grease and oil very well.

All you need to do is soak the clothing in the soda in a bucket and let it sit for an hour.

Give the clothing a normal wash in your machine, and then air dry when ready. Leaving for one hour is not enough to stain light-colored fabric.

Does Aloe Vera Work For Greasy Clothing?

It sure does. If you have several greasy pieces of clothing that you have been trying to get out of several times now, try aloe vera gel.

You need to soak the stained clothing in fresh, cold water and pour in aloe vera gel; the 100% aloe gel works best.

Ensure the gel has covered the stain and let it sit for a few minutes, then wash in a normal cold cycle.

How To Get Greasy Stains Out Of Suede Clothing

First of all, you want to soak up the stain right away with a paper towel.

Try and blot up as much wetness as you can.

Place the suede clothing down flat and apply corn-starch over the stain and let it soak in for one hour.

Be generous with the corn starch as you want to completely cover it so you can no longer view the stain. Corn-starch is very absorbent and works well to draw oil from all fabrics.

When you are ready to remove the corn starch, use a damp microfiber cloth and blot the excess first.

You don’t want to add too much water to the suede as it can damage the clothing.

Once you have removed most of the corn starch, you can wash the suede as you normally would but ensure you do not tumble dry.

Once the suede is dry, you will need to raise the nap, which is easy with a clean toothbrush.

Just brush along the area that was stained and watch how the brushing will soften the suede fibers and make them look fresh and new again. It is best to have a suede brush on hand as this works best.

Suede brushes will also help remove any oil residue lingering.

Suede is comfortable, soft, and very delicate. Even though suede is difficult to clean, oil stains can be removed with basic care.

Before cleaning any greasy suede clothing, also try and blot as much excess out as you can; you don’t want it settling in for too long.

If you have old greasy stains, try and get a suede cleaning kit for clothing that has the right solution for the job and the right tools that are safe for use on suede.

Is It Possible To Get Oil Stains Out Of Your Jeans?

Sometimes work clothes might just be a pair of denim jeans, and unfortunately, they can become stained with oil and grease.

The good thing here is the fact that oil can be removed from denim with the right process and cleaner.

Oil stains are tricky, and sometimes denim can be a hard material to deal with; you might think there is no hope.

There are a few things that you can try to get rid of greasy stains.

All you need to do is blot the stain to get rid of the excess using tissues, paper towels, or cotton balls. This needs to be done as soon as the stain occurs.

Use some baking powder from the pantry and sprinkle it on the stain until it is completely covered.

Lay the denim on a flat surface and let the powder sit for 1-3 hours.

If you notice that the powder has a yellow tinge to it, then it has been successful at removing some of the stains.

Once the time is up, you want to brush off the baking powder with a clean rag or cloth.

Once you have done that, you can rinse the stained area with hot water and give them a good scrub. Wash the jeans as normal on a warm cycle and air dry.

Denim should never be put in the dryer so ensure you dry in a shaded area and away from heat sources.


It doesn’t matter whether you work in fast food or on cars, or perhaps you just got messy with your pizza and have a greasy shirt that needs cleaning.

The tips above work well for cleaning oil and grease stains from all sorts of clothing.

If you find you cannot get the stain out, the other plan of action would be to get a professional service to do this for you.

Your local dry cleaners have the right cleaners and knowledge to remove greasy residues from all types of clothing.

Get rid of the unsightly oil stains and greasy residues, and enjoy wearing your work clothing smelling fresh and clean.  

If you regularly wash greasy clothing, it is a good idea to give your washing machine a good wash every few days as the greasy residue can stick to the washing machine and then be transferred to your other clothing.

It can also build up and cause problems with your washing machine.

There are cleaner tablets designed for washing machines that work well to dissolve grease and build up in your machine safely and quickly.

There are a few tips to try, and you might find that one or all might work for you, but it is worth giving it a try before heading to a professional service.

Which remedy is going to work for your greasy clothes?

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Get Rid Of Grease From Silk?

The best for this material is baby powder or cornstarch. You just dab it on the oil stain, ensure you cover both sides, and then let it sit for a few hours. Lightly brush off the powder with a brush and repeat if the stain persists. Wash as per the instructions on the clothing label.

Can Day-Old Grease Be Removed?

Gojo hand cleaners work well and can be found at hardware or auto part stores. You just rub the solution into the grease, and it will start to dissolve it. You can then wash as usual with your favorite detergent. Ensure you wash your work clothing with Gojo separately from your other clothing.

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