Removing blood stains from your bedsheets, mattress and clothes can sound like a dreadful and challenging task. However, getting rid of such stains isn’t as difficult as it sounds!
With our step-by-step guide on how to remove both fresh and dried blood stains from your bed, you can be sure to tackle this problem with ease!
Before you begin, get your essential tools and cleaning supplies at a bargain from these home cleaning supplies here!
Why do I need to remove blood stains immediately?
Bloodstains can be unsightly, especially if they’re on light-coloured fabric. However, aside from their appearance, there are two more important reasons why you should get rid of them immediately:
- Fresh stains are easier to clean
Fresh blood stains are much easier to get rid of as they have yet to set into the fabric. If you notice a stain on your clothes, sheets or mattress, you should wash or treat it as soon as you can!
- Bacteria can spread through these stains
Cleaning up these stains quickly can prevent the spread of any harmful bacteria and viruses like Hepatitis B and C. In fact, according to the Ministry of Health (MOH), the Hepatitis C virus is capable of surviving in dried blood for a maximum of 1 year if not cleaned.
How to remove blood stains from bed sheets and clothes
When you spot a bloodstain, your first instinct may be to use hot water to soak or rinse off the blood. However, using hot water will actually cause the stain to set into the fabric instead.
Using cold water is a better option and works wonders on fresh stains!
Note: Before you treat the stain, make sure to check the label on your sheets and clothing. If you’re trying to remove a bloodstain from silk or wool materials, check out the section on “how to get rid of blood stains from delicate fabric” below!
Tip: Test the cleaning method on a small area of the fabric
Different materials will react differently to certain stain removal techniques. Hence, a good safety measure would be to test the solution on a small, hidden part of the fabric first!
For fresh stains
Step 1: Rinse the stain
Run the fabric under cold water to remove as much blood as possible. This will make it easier for you to remove any remaining stains.
Tip: Add salt to lighten the stain
If you’re at home but are unable to complete the rest of the steps immediately, you can first soak the fabric in some salt water to prevent the blood from setting in.
Just stir some salt in a pail of cold water and leave them to soak for up to three hours. Rinse it with cold water afterwards.
Step 2: Use liquid laundry detergent
After rinsing the fabric, apply enough liquid laundry detergent to cover the stain and let it sit for 15 minutes.
Once the time’s up, gently rub the fabric to remove the stain.
Step 3: Launder the fabric
Next, use the washing machine to wash the clothes or sheets with your usual detergent and cold water.
Note: Don’t worry about rinsing off the detergent from the previous step. It’ll give the wash added cleaning power!
Step 4: Air-dry the fabric
Once the washing is done and the stain is out, dry the items in the open air and let the sun and breeze do their work!
Tip: Skip the dryer
Try to avoid using the dryer in case you’ve missed a spot and a stain remains. The heat from the dryer will cause the blood to set further and it’ll become more difficult to clean.
For dried stains
Step 1: Remove excess dried blood
When a material fails to absorb the blood fully, a crusty layer may form as the blood dries.
Use a scrub brush or dry sponge to gently scrape off this excess dry blood. This makes the subsequent steps easier and more effective!
Step 2: Tackle the stain
Cover the stain with some hydrogen peroxide (3%). If you don’t have this chemical solution at home, you can also substitute with lemon juice!
Note: Hydrogen peroxide and lemon juice are both highly acidic. Thus, they’re only suitable for use on light-coloured fabric as they can cause discolouration on dark fabric.
Tip: Use baking soda for dark fabric
If you found a bloodstain on a dark-coloured fabric, try using baking soda as a natural solution for treating the stain!
Simply mix some baking soda and water to form a paste. Apply it to the stain and let it sit for up to 30 minutes before rinsing.
Repeat this until the stain is gone.
Note: You can skip to Step 4 if you’re using baking soda!
Step 3: Blot the fabric
Using a clean sponge or cloth, keep dabbing the stain until it’s been removed completely.
As dried bloodstains are generally more challenging to get rid of, you may need to repeat Step 1 – 3 a couple of times.
Step 4: Wash the fabric
Once the fabric is free of any bloodstains, just wash it with detergent using your washing machine.
Step 5: Air-dry the fabric
After the washing is done, leave the fabric out to dry in the sun.
How to remove blood stains from delicate fabric
Dealing with bloodstains on delicate materials like silk and wool requires extra caution. You can follow these steps when washing these kinds of fabric!
Add some salt into a spray bottle filled with cold water and stir well. Spray the silk fabric with the solution and rub the spot with a cloth. Leave it to sit for 10 minutes.
Afterwards, rinse it with cold water and wash as per the instructions on its label.
Rub some hydrogen peroxide (3%) or lemon juice onto the bloodstain using a cloth. After allowing it to sit for five minutes, rinse the fabric with cold water.
Repeat this until the stain has been fully removed and launder the fabric as usual.
How to remove blood stains from mattresses
Removing blood stains from a mattress isn’t as straightforward as removing them from fabric.
As with dried stains on your bedding or clothing, you’ll have to remove the dried blood before treating the stain. Scrape away any excess dried blood and use a vacuum to remove it from the mattress.
Once you’ve done so, follow these steps to remove blood stains from your mattress:
Step 1: Blot the stain with cold water
Use a clean wet cloth to dab the spot and lift off as much blood as possible.
Step 2: Apply stain remover to a cloth or sponge
Apply the stain remover of your choice to a clean cloth or sponge. This can be lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide (3%), baking soda paste or any other stain remover solution you find useful.
Next, dab the stain with the cloth or sponge. As it absorbs the blood, make sure to change to a clean area of the cloth or sponge to prevent the blood from transferring back onto the mattress.
Repeat this motion until the stain is fully removed.
Note: Using a cloth or sponge to apply the stain remover will prevent the mattress from becoming too wet.
Step 3: Blot with a dry cloth
Next, use another dry cloth to dab the area where the stain was to remove any liquid absorbed by the mattress.
Step 4: Air-dry the mattress
Finally, to ensure that the mattress is completely free of moisture, leave it to air-dry before fitting your sheets!
Keep your clothes, bed and mattress stain-free
Removing blood stains from fabric and mattresses doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, you can get rid of these stains using some common household items like laundry detergent, baking soda and lemons.
Just make sure to stock up on cleaning supplies first so you don’t panic when you need them!
Please note: The efficacy of the tips provided may vary depending on the skill, quality of tools used and the build of machines involved (if any).