Does Club Soda really work?
As we enter the holiday season, we’ll find ourselves at countless dinner parties, cocktail hours, and business meetings. Often surrounded by delectable food and drinks, this is also the time where accidental spills can cause lasting effects on our favorite garments (and table linens) if we don’t act fast!
You’ve heard it before, maybe from your grandmother: “Dab the stain with club soda!”
Is club soda really the ultimate stain remedy that it is cracked up to be?
Our 107-year-old professional trade association, the Drycleaning & Laundry Institute (DLI), recently completed an in-depth study of the merits of club soda versus plain old water in stain removal.
We’re pleased to share their findings:
The short answer is YES club soda can be a big help in the short term, but NO it is not the end-all, be-all stain removal miracle you may have hoped for.
When applied immediately to 10 commonplace food stains, both club soda and water removed some or most of the stain, however, neither treatment will completely remove the stains. If left untreated, the remaining stain residue can become permanent over time.
On the 10 common spills that DLI’s stain removal experts used for the test, blotting a spill with either club soda or water some removed most visible traces of the substance. However, an analysis under ultraviolet light showed a portion of nearly every stain remained after club soda or water was used.
It is best to try and rinse out stains with water immediately after contact, however, to extend the longevity of your garment or linens, you should have the item professionally cared for. A reputable cleaner will remove any remaining traces of a stain whether still present or invisible to the naked eye.
As soon as possible, bring your item to Anton’s Cleaners and let your Customer Service Representative know the type of staining substance and what attempts you made to reduce the initial damage.
Our expertly trained staff will be able to determine the best method of cleaning for optimal results.
For Best Results, Act Fast
When it comes time to remove the stain, the chances are greatly increased if club soda (or water) is used to rinse the stain before it dries. After it dries, effectiveness drops considerably.
Invisible remaining residue is especially damaging with any type of stain, as it can oxidize over time and leave a permanent discoloration later, which in many cases on some fabrics cannot be removed.
A stain removal expert can remove this residue if he or she knows the stain was there in the first place. It is always recommended that customers mention any spills or attempts to remove stains at the counter. This way we will be better prepared to restore your garment to a like-new appearance.
In a coffee stain, for example, there may be sugar residue present that you may not be able to see. The sugar can caramelize during the drying or pressing processes, leaving a yellowish stain. Informing your cleaner of known stains may cause them to take a slightly different approach to spot cleaning than they may have otherwise attempted.
Does Club Soda Ever Make Stains Worse?
YES. Ballpoint ink is almost always made up of water and solvent components. If water or club soda is used to remove this kind of stain, it could set the stain permanently into the fabric. So, with ballpoint stains, it is best to leave them to professional stain removers.
For the most part, club soda or water will hold the stain off until you can get the garment to a cleaner, but we don’t recommend solely relying on this technique. Anton’s can usually remove stains completely if you bring them in without delay.