Your monthly cycle can make you feel healthy and confident. It’s a great sign your body is doing exactly what it is supposed to do. However, even the most confident among us can admit we feel a little less than our best when we get a period stain.
In addition to cramps, sore breasts, and other common PMS-related symptoms, period stains are another concern that you might need to deal with during your time of the month. Whether you stain your favorite cotton sheets or bleed right through your undies and go-to pair of leggings, you might feel the only option is to toss your favorite garments in trash, but we promise -- there is hope!
Don’t worry. Most of the time, it’s easy to remove period stains from your clothes and linens. In fact, there are ways you can get those stains out and give your clothes and sheets a second life.
We consulted two cleaning experts and asked them to share their top go-to stain removing tips and tricks. The best part? You probably already have all the ingredients needed at home.
8 Easy Tips for Removing Period Stains
Use Cold Water and Clean It While It’s Fresh
When it comes to stains, cold water is always best. “Warm water will set the stains further into the fabrics, rather than removing them,” says Joanne Archer, Expert Home Tips cleaning expert.
The other key thing to remember about period stains is that you have to act fast. Rinse your soiled undies in cool water to get as much of the stain out as possible. “Getting blood stains out is always easier when they are fresh,” says Lily Cameron, cleaning expert at Fantastic Services. “Make a paste of salt and cold water and apply it to the fresh blood stain. Let it air dry and then brush away the affected area.” Afterward, you can throw it in the laundry as usual.
Use Cornflour and Hang It in the Sun
If the salt and cold water paste isn’t strong enough, grab some cornflour from your pantry.
“Simply mix together two parts cornflour to one part cold water until you have a thick paste,” Archer says. “Rub the paste into the stain and then hang the fabric in the sun. The sun is one of the best natural stain removers. Brush the dried corn flour off and then launder the fabric as normal.”
Create a Baking Soda or Talcum Powder Paste
Baking soda and talcum powder can also help to remove period stains. Similar to the cornflour paste, start by mixing one part baking soda or talcum powder with two parts water, Cameron says. Next, moisten the stain with water and apply the paste right on it. Let it dry in the sun and then remove any residue with a brush. Lastly, throw it in the laundry with cold water and it’ll be good as new.
Dab the Stain With Hydrogen Peroxide, Club Soda, or Vinegar
If you don’t have cornflour, baking soda, or talcum powder at home or you just aren’t in the mood to get your hands messy with a paste, hydrogen peroxide, club soda, or vinegar will also do the trick. Cameron recommends applying your liquid of choice directly on the stained area. Let it sit for a few minutes to work its magic in dissolving the stain. Then dab the blood residue with a paper towel and voila!
Give It a Good Soak
If you’ve tried all the stain-removing tips and tricks and the stain is still not budging, Cameron recommends giving it a really good soak in cold water for six to 12 hours. “This will help loosen the dried blood stains,” she says. Then toss it in the washing machine with cold water and gentle detergent. It might not get the stain out completely, but it will help loosen it up.
Wash Your Sheets Multiple Times
Removing period stains from sheets can be especially tricky. That’s why Cameron recommends putting them in the washing machine on a cold cycle with mild detergent. “When the program is over, take out the sheets as soon as possible and avoid drying them in the dryer,” she says. “Take the sheets out and hang them in the sun. If the stain persists, simply repeat the steps until it comes out completely. For white sheets, you can try tackling period stains with bleach.”
Dish Soap and Baking Soda
Apply a small amount of dish soap to your stain and cover it with baking soda. Let it sit for about twenty minutes, then scrub the area with a soft-bristled brush (an old toothbrush works well). Run the garment through your regular wash cycle to fully lift the stain.
Prevention Is Key
All that said, the best plan of action moving forward is to prevent stains from happening in the first place. If you have a really heavy flow, wear Overnight Pads to protect your sheets. They’re extra long and super absorbent, and they won’t budge while you toss and turn thanks to double wings. During the day, you can wear Long Organic Liners in addition to tampons to catch any leaks. Period Panties are also great for an added layer of protection and peace of mind.
How to Prevent Period Stains From Happening
Why do period stains happen? There are a few reasons:
You aren’t wearing the right level of protection. Period protection is absorbent and effective if you’re wearing it correctly. For instance, tampons should only be worn for 3-4 hours before they need to be changed. The correct absorbency will be full in that time period, but not overflowing.
If you are leaking through, you need a larger size. If your tampon comes out fairly dry, you should switch to a lower absorbency.
Pads work a bit differently in that you can wear them as long as you are comfortable and don’t bleed through.
- You aren’t planning properly. It happens. You leave home and forget to pack your period care items, or get surprised by your period at work. Relax. It happens to everyone, but you can be better prepared!
When you know your period is on the way, you can take a few simple extra steps to make sure accidents don’t happen.
- Panty liners. Panty liners are thin, absorbent pads that can help keep you dry and confident. Consider wearing our micro thin panty liners. Our liners are organic cotton, remarkably thin, and help prevent a messy situation from being a situation at all.
Period panties. If your period is on the way, or if you just want an added layer of super comfortable protection, period panties are the solution.
Period panties are absorbent enough to hold three tampons and are just as comfortable as your regular intimates. Rael’s period panties are redesigned to be more leak proof than ever. Our panties are seamless, completely comfortable, and won’t wind up between your cheeks!
Flushable feminine wipes. Keeping a pack of easy to use, flushable feminine wipes can help you feel like a hygiene queen. If you feel like things might be getting messy, these all-natural wipes can help you feel fresh and fabulous.
Our feminine wipes contain no harsh chemicals that could irritate your skin or inflame your intimate areas. One pack is discreet, and of course, perfectly safe for flushing.
Preventing period stains from happening is easy, but it’s not always foolproof. Remember, your cycle is a pretty big event your body produces every month. Be prepared, but when leaks happen, stay calm.
Our suggestion? Use an “oopsie” day as an opportunity to practice a little self care. Maybe treat yourself to a sheet mask treatment or a hot yoga class.
When you’ve got a period stain, you’ve got options to get it removed. If all else fails, treat yourself to a new pair of favorite leggings or some new intimates. You deserve it!
When it comes to preventing stains, Rael has you covered. We’ve got everything you need to be prepared when your period comes, from super thin panty liners to use before your period arrives to ultra comfortable overnight pads to keep your sheets crisp and clean.
Have the period you deserve with products that help you feel confident and comfortable all month long.