Emergency Treatment for Blood Stains

A person putting a brightly colored bandage on their elbow
Falling down and skinning your knee is pretty much inevitable at one point or another, as are bloody noses, picked scabs and other “ouchy!” accidents. If you have kids — or sometimes act like a kid — knowing how to treat blood stains will save countless outfit and sports uniforms.

Like most stains, the most important rule for blood stain removal is immediacy. Don’t just throw the stained shirt into the laundry pile; it’s time to act fast! Once a blood stain has set in the clothes, it becomes close to impossible to remove. The quicker you start treating the stain, the easier it will come out.

How Do You Treat Blood Stains?

The first step you should take is to treat the wound. Don’t worry so much about the garment until you know the person is safe and the bleeding is under control. When it comes time to save the garment, get it in cold water as soon as possible. Soaking it in cold water may treat most of the stain on its own, especially if the stain didn’t have any time to settle into the fabric.

For emergency stain-fighting power, try any one of these three methods:

Treat Blood Stains with Vinegar

  • Step 1: Pour white vinegar directly onto the stained area
  • Step2: Let the vinegar soak in for about 10 minutes
  • Step 3: Blot the area with paper towel and repeat if stain is not yet removed
  • Step 4: Use a wet towel to get rid of the vinegar smell or wash in cold water

Treat Blood Stains with Hydrogen Peroxide

  • Step 1: Pour 3% hydrogen peroxide directly to the blood stain
  • Step 2: Rinse with cold water & wash as usual

Pro Tip: You can use hydrogen peroxide to clean a cut as well!

Treat Blood Stains with Cornstarch

  • Step 1: Mix cornstarch with cold water to make a paste-like substance
  • Step 2: Generously coat the blood stained area
  • Step 3: Place the stained garment in a dry, sunny location
  • Step 4: Once the stained area has dried, brush off the paste
  • Step 5: Repeat this process if the stain is still visible

Blood stains can be pretty nasty. They’re difficult to remove but not impossible. Just as your skinned knee or shaving cut will heal, so will your jersey, bedding or favorite pants! We also recommend a Band-Aid to prevent any further stains, and maybe a kiss on the “boo-boo” (no matter the age, a kiss always makes it feel better)!

If you have a busy household full of accident-prone kids, contact your local Molly Maid to learn more about our flexible cleaning programs! We can discuss a custom cleaning schedule that will help keep your house in order and give you more time to focus on other things — like keeping up with your kids!