How to Remove Common Stains From Kids’ T-Shirts

By Maria Rogerson

February 24, 2023Clothes

Once you become a parent, your conception of dirty clothes will change immediately. For instance, if before having kids you thought that your jeans are dirty after two to three wears, what are your thoughts now? Do you still believe that back then your jeans were that dirty after seeing your kid’s clothes now?!

While this stage of their lives will surely pass, sometimes it can be nerve-wracking seeing your little one staining his clothes (whether intentionally or unintentionally). Slime and paint stains, green streaks of grass from playing sports, food grease, blood…you name it. These are just some of the many stains your kid can have all over his clothes, but the worst thing of all is getting rid of them. This goes especially for most fabrics except for some natural fabrics like cotton.

Why Cotton Is the First Choice Parents Make?

cotton kids t-shirt


When it comes to choosing kids’ clothes, especially comfy kids’ t-shirts, cotton is the first choice by parents. Aside from being the softest material, cotton is the easiest to clean, especially when it comes to cleaning stains. While cotton is considered a fabric that can easily absorb everything, especially oil and grease, it’s also the easiest to clean.

All it takes is to wash it immediately after staining. Even if you aren’t at home, a simple wash with clean water will help the stain to lift off a bit from the fabric. Once at home, just toss it in the washing machine and that’s it.

Another reason that makes cotton the ideal material for kids is its softness and comfiness. Most of the kids are extremely active, and their playtime often means getting sweaty and dirty. Luckily, cotton is one of the few fabrics that’ll keep your child comfortable all the time, so it’s more than obvious why parents choose it, especially for the top. The main reason for this is that cotton is a breathable material and well-known for its absorbent properties, keeping your child as comfy as possible.

Cotton kids’ t-shirts are undeniably stylish and durable at the same time. This strength of theirs can withstand constant wear without showing signs of being old. But maybe the biggest benefit of kids’ t-shirts made of cotton is their hypoallergenic properties. No kind of stain can be that scariest to see and clean like seeing your child having an allergic reaction to the t-shirt’s fabric.

Skin allergy is quite common in children, especially when wearing t-shirts and clothes made from synthetic fabric. Luckily, cotton is a fabric made from natural fibre which has hypo-allergenic properties, so seeing a child allergic to it is extremely rare. Cotton is also resistant to dust mites and it has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties which makes it the perfect choice for t-shirts. This fabric is extremely gentle on the skin which makes it perfect for both kids and adults.

How to Get Rid of Some Common Stains?

removing stains from kids clothes


Even though cotton makes cleaning stains pretty straightforward, not all stains can be removed by simply tossing them in the washing machine. Some of them will need to be treated with a special cleaning solution in order to remove the stain.

Food Stains

Different kinds of stains will need a different treatment, however, rinsing them with cold water prior to washing them in the machine is a must. For instance, cleaning baby food should be done by pre-soaking the t-shirt in cold water and detergent and then washing it in the machine in warm water or according to the manufacturer’s directions. If after this treatment the stain isn’t removed, you should use a pre-wash stain remover to clean the specific area and then wash it in the machine once again.

Chocolate, fruit and juice stains should be cleaned and removed the same way as cleaning any other food. In case the stains are more stubborn, you should use a pre-wash cleaner, let them sit for about 30 minutes and then toss them in the machine. For cleaning mustard, tomato, beetroot or any other tougher to-remove stain, you should use gentler bleach agents alike the almighty hydrogen peroxide.

Paint Stains

paint stains on t-shirt


Cleaning water-based paints are super easy as most of them can be removed by simply tossing the tee in the washing machine. In case the paint is already dry, applying a stain remover prior to washing might be needed.

Unfortunately, cleaning oil-based paints isn’t that simple. In order to clean it, you may need a thinner or turpentine which is great for softening paint. Turpentine is a powerful solvent, so after its application, you should rinse the tee. After that, you can pre-treat the stain with stain remover, laundry detergent or bar soap, rinse it and then toss it in the machine.

Glue Stains

Removing glue from a cotton tee should be done gently with the help of some kind of lubricant like glycerine. Apply the product and gently start scraping off any loosened residue. Let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse the fabric, rub a bit of dish soap into the stain and wash it in the machine.

Crayon Stains

crayon stains


With the help of a dull knife, scrape off as much crayon as you can and then place the stain side down on a clean paper towel, and spray the stain with WD-40. Let it sit for a few minutes, turn it over, spray it once again and rinse well. After this, rub a bit of liquid dish soap, rinse, apply a stain remover and toss it in the machine.