All these years, you’ve likely fallen prey to the same tall-tale as rest of us.
“Yellow pit stains are caused by sweat.”
Well, it turns out, they aren’t. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not your sweat itself that causes pit stains. It’s your choice in deodorants.
The ingredients in your deodorant combine with your sweat to create those yellow rings marring your white shirts. And those white or oily marks on the underarms of your shirts? Those are the direct result of deodorant residue.
But don’t worry — we’ll teach you how to get rid of both types of deodorant stains.
How to Get Rid of Deodorant Stains
As with all stains, the longer it’s been around, the harder it will be to tackle. So, your best policy is to work on these pit stains every time you notice them.
Yellow Pit Stains
The bane of every white dress shirt in existence — the dreaded yellow armpit stain. Don’t despair. Here’s your game plan:
Step 1. Wet the stained area with hot water.
Step 2. Apply a generous sprinkle of our Oxygen Whitener over the stained area. Work it into the fabric until it forms a paste. Allow it to sit for 30 minutes.
Step 3. Put the garment directly into the wash on a presoak setting on the hottest temperature that is safe for the garment. Add a scoop of Oxygen Whitener into the drum of the washer.
White Chalky Residue
With these stains, the secret is to gently work the build-up out of the fibers. Here’s what you need to:
Step 1. Heat the fabric. Heat will begin to loosen the caked deodorant so that it will more easily release from the fibers. Use a steam cleaner, steam setting on an iron, or just run the armpits of your shirt under very hot water.
Step 2. Rub the residue with a microfiber cloth, a damp washcloth, or similar. Gently rub the stain in circular motions. Fresh stains should lift quickly, while older stains will require more attention.
Step 3. Launder as normal. Put the garment into the laundry on the warmest setting safe for the fabric.
How to Avoid Deodorant Stains in the First Place
Part of the reason deodorant stains become a problem is that you’re applying your deodorant incorrectly. I know, it seems hard to believe that you could be doing something so basic the wrong way, but hear us out.
Tip 1. Put your deodorant on 15 minutes before putting on your clothing.
Freshly applied deodorant hasn’t had a chance to soak into the skin. The residue is then easily picked up onto the shirt, where it forms that white, cakey residue. Complete your other ‘get-ready’ activities before getting dressed.
Tip 2. Apply only a thin layer of deodorant.
If you battle with stinky armpits, your instinct is likely to use a lot of deodorants. But this only serves to create a thicker layer of residue on your skin to be worked into the fabric of your shirts over the course of the day.
Tip 3. Choose a natural deodorant and ditch the aluminum-based antiperspirant.
Chemical-based deodorants and antiperspirants contain a cornucopia of harsh chemicals and toxins that are hard on your health. Some of these include aluminum, paragons, propylene glycol, triclosan, and phthalates.
If you’re worried that a switch to natural options mean you have to suffer chronic pit-stink, don’t be. There are plenty of great brands out there that work really well and are made completely using plant and earth-derived ingredients.