How to Remove Orange Juice Stains From Clothes, Carpet, and Furniture

How to Remove Orange Juice Stains

The Spruce / Michela Buttignol

Project Overview
  • Working Time: 5 - 15 mins
  • Total Time: 15 mins - 12 hrs
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Estimated Cost: $10

Whether you enjoy drinking fresh orange juice or using it in recipes, spills are possible. Orange juice stains aren't as bright and dramatic as you might imagine. In fact, fresh orange juice seldom leaves a glaring mark on fabric, but it can create a permanent blemish or bleached spot if not handled properly. The acid in citrus juice can act as a bleaching agent, especially when exposed to sunlight.

Orange juice concentrates and orange-flavored drinks are more likely to impart orange stains; some even contain added food coloring or dyes.

Learn how to treat orange juice stains on clothing, carpet, and upholstered furniture so that you're not stuck with a permanent reminder of a spill.

Tip

Never use natural soap in a bar or soap flakes to treat a juice stain because these products can make plant-based pigments more difficult to remove.

 Stain Type Orange juice
 Detergent Type Laundry detergent, dishwashing liquid, oxygen bleach
 Water Temperature Hot
 Cycle Type Normal
2:18

Click Play to Learn How to Remove Orange Juice Stains

Before You Begin

As with most food stains, it's best to treat orange juice spills quickly to reduce the chances of permanent staining.

What You'll Need

Equipment / Tools

  • Washing machine
  • Vacuum

Materials

  • Paper towels or clean cloths
  • Oxygen bleach
  • Laundry detergent
  • Dishwashing liquid

Instructions

Steps to Remove Orange Juice From Washable Clothes and Linens

  1. Blot

    Immediately blot the juice spill from the fabric with a clean white cloth or paper towels.

    blotting the stain on the towel
    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska 
  2. Soak in an Oxygen Bleach Solution

    Mix a solution of warm water and oxygen-based bleach (brand names include OxiClean, Nellie's All-Natural Oxygen Brightener, or OXO Brite) following package directions. For stains on synthetic fabrics such as polyester or nylon and colored or printed clothes, color-safe oxygen bleach is a better choice. 

    Completely submerge the stained items, and allow them to soak for at least four hours or overnight. Then wash as usual.

    handwashing a stained towel
    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska  
  3. Launder

    Washing the garment or linens with a high-quality detergent (Tide and Persil are highly rated and considered heavy-duty) in the hottest water recommended for the fabric on the care label.

    Tip

    After any stain removal treatment, check the stained areas before placing clothes in a hot dryer. The high heat can set the stains, making them very difficult to remove.

  4. Check Before Drying

    Examine the stained area to make sure no pigment remains before drying the item. A dryer's heat will permanently set the stain. If some stain remains, repeat the soaking and washing process.

  1. Blot Until Dry to the Touch

    Use a white paper towel or old white cloth to blot up as much of the liquid as possible. Keep blotting until no more moisture is transferred from the carpet to the cloth.

  2. Dab with Dishwashing Liquid

    Mix a solution of 2 teaspoons of dishwashing detergent in 2 cups of warm water.

    • Dip a clean white cloth, sponge, or soft bristle brush in the solution.
    • Working from the outside edge of the stain toward the center to keep it from spreading, work the cleaning solution into the stain.
    • Blot with a dry cloth to absorb the solution (keep moving to a clean area of the cloth as the stain is transferred).

    Tip

    The same cleaning solutions and techniques can be used for juice stains on upholstery. Take care not to over-wet the fabric because excess moisture in the cushions can cause problems such as mildew.

  3. Rinse Carefully and Air Dry

    Dip a clean cloth in plain water to "rinse" the spot. This is especially important because any soapy residue left on the carpet will actually attract more soil.

    Allow the stain to air-dry away from direct heat.

  4. Vacuum

    Vacuum to lift the carpet fibers and restore the appearance of your carpet.

    vacuuming a rug
    The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska 

Additional Tips for Handling Orange Juice Stains

Older juice stains or color-enhanced orange drinks may need additional treatment.

  • You can use chlorine bleach to remove the stains from cotton white garments and linens (follow the product directions carefully).
  • Alternatively, for items that are not colorfast, mix a solution of oxygen-based bleach in cool water following package directions. 
  • Dip a clean cloth into the solution, and working from the outside edge of the stain toward the center, work the solution into the carpet (do not over-wet). 
  • Allow the solution to remain on the stain for at least 30 minutes before blotting away.


When to Call a Professional

If the stained garment is dry clean only, gently blot as much of the juice as possible, then take it to a professional cleaner as soon as possible. Point out and identify the stain to your professional cleaner so it can use the proper stain-removing chemicals.

Tip

If you decide to use a home dry cleaning kit, be sure to treat the stain with the provided stain remover before putting the garment in the dryer bag.