A doctor gently placing a plaster on a girl's arm.

How to Remove Blood Stains from Clothes

If you have a child who has ever fallen off their bike, tripped in the playground, scratched themselves climbing a tree, had a nosebleed, cut themselves, pricked themselves, or generally just gone about the everyday business of being a kid, then it won’t be any secret at all that blood is one of the toughest, trickiest stains to shift. Here are our top laundry tips on removing blood stains from fabric. The problem is that blood stains are not just any old red mark. A blood stain is an organic stain, which means it’s full of proteins, and proteins are programmed to bind together when heated, making them set fast into our clothes. This means it’s important to resist the temptation to wash blood stains out with hot water and instead approach with slightly more caution.

Emergency action to remove blood stains from clothes

So, how to remove blood stains from clothes? As soon as the accident happens (or at least once you’ve finished comforting your patient), run the stain under cold water. We’ll repeat that: COLD water. Hot water will encourage all those proteins to set the stain into the fabric. If it’s not possible to remove the garment to rinse it (few children would be happy to be seen in a public park in their underwear while you rinse their trousers), then dab the stain with something absorbent like a paper towel or cotton handkerchief to soak up as much blood as possible. Work from the outside of the stain inwards so that you don’t spread it further.  

How to remove old blood stains: soaking solutions

Although OMO Ultimate Liquid has been developed to get clothes brilliantly clean in a single, short wash, even with 48-hour dried-in stains, a tough, older blood stain may benefit from a pre-soak to rehydrate it and start to work it loose. Removing blood stains is made easier by soaking the garment in a bucket of cold, salted water (we recommend one or two tablespoons of salt for every litre of water) for several hours before washing as usual. For any persistent marks, treat these with a tepid solution of OMO Ultimate Liquid, rubbing the edge of the stain with the solution before leaving the garment to soak.  

Wash with care when removing blood stains

Make sure the entire blood stain is out before washing your garment with hot water otherwise you risk setting it into the fabric. Luckily all our products achieve excellent results at cold temperatures so if in doubt, use a cold wash.  

Still trouble removing the blood stains?

OK, if the blood stain really won’t go (and sometimes they just won’t), let’s make sure no one can see it.   For more expert laundry tips on how to remove stains, visit our Stain Removal Tips.