How to remove Turmeric Stains

Turmeric – the elixir of life, queen of spices. It’s healing and cleansing properties so very well known. An Indian curry is non-recognizable and somewhat un-aromatic without this spice. Patents upon patents have been applied for the extract of  turmeric namely ‘curcumin’ for its “anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti fungal, anti parasitic, anti-mutagen, anticancer and detox properties”(ref). But nothing else concerned me but what the DIY beauty tips book told me. It proclaimed this herb as the magic cure for what I consider as dark craters on my face – those unwanted marks pimples left behind. I wanted those black marks to go forever. And this herb, the book says is “it”- The cure for all skin problems, especially blemishes and acne scars.

how to remove turmeric stains

I used the herb for one week in its pure raw form – And it created its own problems. My skin turned a yellow color. The jury is still out on whether the dark craters are  a shade less darker than it was earlier or it seems so because on the whole, I am yellow.  Anyways a number of my towels and clothes are also stained yellow. Even the stainless steel spoons I used are stained.

remove turmeric stains tips

A thorough scrub got rid of the spoon spots and the face color. But I thought I was in trouble with the towels. 

If you try to spot clean the stain with the first soap you get, you will probably get an heart attack – the stain may turn a dark red if the wrong soap gets to it.  It has a scientific explanation, but I took arts in college so maybe you want to read about that elsewhere. But enough to know that the acid in turmeric reacts with the base element in soap and turns the yellow spot to red.

5 ideas of note in treating Turmeric stains

1 It is very important to ‘not use hot water’ when treating turmeric stains – that may set the stain permanently.

2 As soon as you see the stain spot treat it. Dish washing liquid is the best way to spot clean turmeric. You can spot treat the turmeric  stains on clothes by using a solution of some dish wash detergent and a little baking soda or hydrogen peroxide or just the dish wash liquid detergent in a little water ; soak the area with this solution and then blot it away. 

3 Now Wash as usual later, when you can with a good effective detergent. Turmeric stains usually vanishes with a through wash in the washing machine with a strong detergent like Surf excel and drying in good sunlight. Soak for 15 minutes for more effectiveness.

A spot clean with the dish wash detergent and a wash with sudsy and strong detergent and a day out drying in the sunlit sky made all the yellow color of my towels fade like a dream.

4 If the stain persists you can try some other treatments at home. Some home remedy recommendations for tough turmeric stains include using hydrogen peroxide, using glycerin and baking soda, mildly bleaching elements like lime juice and vinegar. Extreme and hardened stains may require bleaching. Check out these post on bleaching and other home remedies for stains.

5 Clever hacks for un-washables – If the item you have stained with turmeric is a non washable item like a carpet or bag with un-washable parts or something you cannot wash right away or you are watching the turmeric staining right now, you need an action that doesn’t involve washing. Put some cornflour or talcum powder or flour on the stain. This will absorb the water and the stain; Now when the powder has absorbed the staining thing, you can just dust it off. Remove the stain completely by treating the area with dish wash detergent and then blotting all the suds away with clean cloth.

Note : Test any stain removal product on a small, inconspicuous area first.; Follow the care label instructions for the best way to clean a garment.

Reference on the patent :

Comments 3

  1. Hi I’m a regular user of turmeric. You should use steamed dry turmeric I’m sure it will be sold in any of the Indian grocery shops. Crush it and powder it.. Take a pinch mix it with a drop or 2 drops of water. Aftet washing your face with soap apply only on the mark. Leave it for 3 to 5 mins and wash it off. Do not use soap to wash it off.

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