Sunday, October 20, 2013

Olive Oil Stains? Goo Gone to the Rescue!

Ack!  Olive Oil Stains! 

Right now I am not a big fan of olive oil.  Don't get me wrong, it's fantastic for cooking and is a great ingredient in many cosmetic applications.  It's also what the doctor ordered - in this case, the Lice doctor - to keep our family's hair bug free after the kids brought home the dreaded creatures about three weeks ago now.  It's been a long traumatic road for all parties, I'll be honest with you, and I told my husband just now that I WILL be cutting my hair off should it ever happen again.  Still, we're beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  In the meantime, though, we have to treat with the stuff *and leave it over night!* every other day.  This is inevitably leading to oil spots on clothing that I am not willing to merely write off.

What I've Tried

The first product I tried was Dawn dish detergent.  It appears frequently in "mommy blogs," and is also what the same lice doctors recommend you use to get the oil out of your hair in the morning.  However, I am having Minimal success with it.

I've also seen "Dawn Direct Foam" recommended.  This is not apparently very easy to find: my local Target did not have it, for instance, and others have had trouble too.  I am strongly suspicious, however, that "Direct Foam" is merely ordinary Dawn put in a fancy foaming dispenser.  I decided to try it: I put Dawn in a foaming hand soap bottle mixed about 1:5 with water.  It foams quite nicely, and it's working just fine for our hair in the morning (although I have to wash at least two or three times to get everything out. Sheesh!)  On our clothes, however, it's no better (although at least no worse) than unfoamed Dawn.  Hardly surprising, but hey, I may keep the bottle around in the kitchen after we're done shampooing with it!

While I was at Target anyway, I gave their laundry aisle a good once over looking for what they try to sell you for this problem.  Surprisingly, the answer was "nothing."  All the major brand stain removers promise to work on just about anything *except* oil!
This discovery, plus past experience of very little luck in with alternate techniques like baking soda, etc, I was about ready to give up - with very ill grace!

What Actually Works

I pulled out a tiny bottle of Goo Gone to try and remove some sticky label residue from a jar I wished to reuse.  As I rarely use it, I read the directions - and was surprised to see that they say you can use it on fabric.  At this point one of my husband's good polo shirts had been through the wash with Dawn at least three times to no avail, so I had nothing to lose.  I believe the label suggested wetting a rag and rubbing rather than applying directly to the stain, although I have since done it both ways.  You leave it to set for a "a while:" I've let several things sit overnight, although just a few minutes is probably fine.  In any case, *it worked!*  It worked again on a new shirt of mine, and I have several other items being treated right now. You are supposed to wash the items separately, although I haven't been quite as careful about that as I probably should.

Even better? My little bottle came from the Dollar Tree.  It's clearly going to be enough to get us through this little crisis, although I'm just not even going to Try with some of our darker colored towels or the kids sheets.  Some things I'm just sucking up as the price of community. :}


I am sure that there are some fabrics and dyes that are not going to react well to the stuff - they warn against silk and leather, for instance.  But it has not ruined the ordinary cotton or cotton blends I've used it on thus far.  My way of looking at it is, a garment with a big ol' oil stain on it is one step away from a write off anyway, so it's not really that much of risk!

PS: I am not being paid to write about this product, I'm just Really happy that I stumbled across something that seriously works!

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