How to Get Slime Out of Clothing in a Few Simple Steps

Female Child squeezing novelty green slime through fingers

Elva Etienne/ Moment/ Getty Images

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 10 - 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 - 4 hrs
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $5-10

Kids love slime. The sticky goo provides sensory play and hours of fun, particularly appealing to young age groups. You can buy slime or make it yourself with just a few household products. But what to do when the slime sticks to or stains clothing?

We wrote your complete guide for removing sticky slime from clothing with simple ingredients, like vinegar and water. Read on to learn how to get slime out of clothes easily.

Stain Type Gum-based, dye
Detergent Type Heavy-duty detergent, distilled white vinegar
Water Temperature Warm
Cycle Type Normal

Before You Begin

If the slime ends up on clothes that are labeled dry-clean-only, use a spoon or dull-edged knife to remove as much of the goo as possible. Lift, don't rub! Take the garment to a dry cleaner as soon as possible and identify the stain so they can treat it correctly.

You can usually remove slime from carpets and upholstery with home methods. However, if the upholstery is silk or vintage, contact a professional cleaner.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • 1 washer or large sink
  • 1 spoon, dull-edged knife, old credit card
  • 1 spray bottle or small bowl
  • 1 microfiber cloth
  • 1 pair tweezers

Materials

  • 1 container heavy-duty laundry detergent
  • 1 bottle distilled white vinegar
  • 1 container oxygen-based bleach powder
  • 1 to 2 ice cubes
  • 1 plastic bag

Instructions

How to Get Fresh Slime Stains Out of Washable Clothes

  1. Scoop Away the Slime

    Use a spoon, dull-edged knife, or the edge of a credit card to gently lift away as much of the slime as possible from the fabric. Do not rub the stain—rubbing only pushes the slime deeper into the fibers of the fabric.

  2. Mix a Vinegar and Water Solution

    In a small bowl or spray bottle, mix one part distilled white vinegar and one part water. Vinegar contains acetic acid that will break the bonds between the slime and the fabric yet is mild enough to be used safely on clothes.

  3. Spray the Slime Stain

    • Spray the slime-stained area with the vinegar and water solution or dab some on with a microfiber cloth.
    • Allow the solution to work for five minutes before washing the clothes.
    • Use the spoon or old credit card to remove any additional slime particles that have loosened from the fabric.
  4. Wash the Clothes

    Wash the clothes as you usually would in warm or cool water using a heavy-duty detergent that contains enzymes to help lift stains.

  5. Check for Stains

    As you remove the clothes from the washer, check for any remaining stains or traces of color from the slime. If stains remain, do not put the clothes in the dryer. The high heat will make the stains more difficult to remove.

  6. Get Rid of Lingering Slime Stains

    The lingering stains are usually caused by the dye or food coloring added to the slime. These can be removed with oxygen-based bleach and a bit of patience.

    • Mix a solution of cool water and oxygen-based bleach powder. Follow the package directions for how much product to use per gallon of water.
    • Submerge the entire garment and let it soak for at least four hours. Overnight is better.
    • Check the stained area and repeat the steps with a fresh solution, if needed.
    • Wash the clothes as usual.

How to Get Rid of Old Slime Stains on Washable Clothes

If the slime has dried or gone through the dryer and is stuck to the fabric, follow these steps to safely remove it before treating the stains.

  1. Harden the Dried Slime

    • Place a couple of ice cubes in a plastic bag. Place the bag on the dried slime to harden it.
    • Or, place the garment in a plastic bag. Put the bag in the freezer for a couple of hours.
  2. Safely Remove the Slime

    Once the slime has hardened, use your fingernails or tweezers to gently peel off the slime.

  3. Treat the Stains

    Follow the same stain removal tips for getting out fresh slime to remove all traces of the stain.

Additional Tips to Prevent Slime Stains on Clothes

Here are a few tips to help you get the best results:

  • Don't wait. Treat the stains as quickly as possible. Fresh slime stains are easier to remove than dried slime stains.
  • Don't put slime-stained clothes in the dryer. The high heat may set the stains into the fabric permanently.
  • Wear an apron or smock when playing with slime to prevent stains on clothes.
  • Protect surfaces like carpet, upholstery, or textured wood with plastic sheeting or a vinyl tablecloth.