We’ve made it through the hottest days, and the kids are back in school. Time to cross another summer off the list. Well, not so fast.

Take a closer look at all those summer clothes before you store them away until next year. Are they ready for a long winter’s nap? Now’s the time to take care of the stains of this summer if you don’t want them waiting for you next season. Here’s what you need to know about some of those stains.


No sweat. The stains aren’t from sweat, at least. Your sweat contains proteins, and that’s what would make a stain if your sweat was actually making those marks on your summer garments. This is especially the case if those stains are located on the underarm areas of your garments.

Those yellowish stains – especially visible on white or light-colored fabrics – are more likely caused by the aluminum found in your antiperspirant. Professional laundering or dry cleaning is the best way to approach this type of stain removal. The approach won’t involve bleach, either. If it does turn out that these stains are also caused by the protein found in sweat, bleach has a chemical reaction to protein stains that actually intensifies the yellow color of any stain residue. All the more reason to trust your summer garments with sweat stains to a professional launderer.

Whether it’s your antiperspirant or the sweat, this residue can build up to make the fabric seem stiff or cardboard-like. A professional launderer knows how to treat this. They’ll use bleaching agents with an oxygen base.

Dirt and Grass

Professional sports players aren’t worried about the consequences of sliding through grass and dirt can have on their uniforms. For most of us, those stains have to come out – and they certainly can’t hang around to follow us into next year’s playoffs.

Most dirt and grass stains are made of proteins. Your dry cleaner or professional launderer will use specific enzyme-based spot treatments to work on those stains before a general cleaning. It’s not recommended that you try to get these stains out yourself if you value the garment. Heat sets protein stains. Your initial try can make the stain a permanent record of your epic slide into home base.

Ice Cream

Did it drip before you could lick it? We love ice cream, but some of us learn quickly to dislike the consequences of a stain. It isn’t just the shock of the dark blotch your favorite berry-flavored ice cream makes on a shirt or skirt. Even seemingly innocent vanilla can be a villain.

Dairy stains must be treated and removed carefully. Temperature can cook the proteins found in milk and cream, which can embed them into the fibers and turn even light-colored stains even darker. Ice cream stains of any color should be professionally treated with an appropriate enzyme-based stain remover. Most of the deep colors found in ice cream toppings like rainbow sprinkles can be easily removed by your dry cleaner, who will apply an alcohol-based solvent.

Don’t say goodbye to summer – and summer stains – by tossing your favorite clothes in the washer one last time and hoping for the best. If you value the garment and want to wear it again next year, bring it in for proper cleaning and preparation for next summer. Learn more about our free pick-up and delivery service.