How to Get Toothpaste Out of a Shirt

Toothpaste today comprises all manner of ingredients including dyes and mild bleaching agents, there’s no telling what will happen if some of it got on your shirt. Some might leave you with a slightly bleached spot on the fabric; others may leave behind a persistent, chalky stain if left unattended.

Using water alone will not get the stain out completely. If you do use it, it might set the stain further into the fabric. But you can put your mind at rest now because, thankfully, you can get rid of the toothpaste stains with only a few simple steps. Stay with us.

How To Get Toothpaste Out Of Shirt

So you’re in a hurry and you clumsily let a blob of toothpaste fall on your shirt. To amateurs, getting toothpaste out of a shirt is as easy as wiping it off with water and a small rag. Bad idea.

In time, that would prove to be a costly mistake because as the affected spot dries, the coating of toothpaste left behind acts on the fabric, giving it an unsightly, chalky color – sometimes permanently. 

In essence, the key to saving your shirt is to act fast and not with water alone. Below, we have outlined steps to take to get toothpaste out of your shirt correctly: 

Step 1 – Remove Excess Toothpaste

When you have a toothpaste blob on your shirt, it is easier to take the necessary cleaning measures when most of the paste has been removed. It’s easy, just take a small rag, then gently clean off as much toothpaste as you can. 

But if the toothpaste has been there for a while and dried in, just take out the most toothpaste using a blunt knife. However, it is better to remove the toothpaste fast so it doesn’t start to act on the fabric. After scraping off the most toothpaste, you’re ready for the next step.

Step 2- Moisten The Stained Spot

Moisten a small, clean rag and dab at the spot. This will moisten the fabric, dissolve and prevent the toothpaste from drying out. After this, the spot may begin to look like your work is done. Don’t fall for it – proceed to step 3.

Step 3 – Pre-treat With Dish Soap

Apply a generous amount of dishwashing soap like Dawn on the affected spot. Let it stand for about 15 minutes. For delicate fabric such as silk, you may need to perform a spot test just to make sure that the soap is safe to use on it.

Step 4 – Rinse, Then Wash

Rinse away the dish soap with cold water, then load the shirt into the machine for washing. Turn on the washing machine and wash the shirt using the usual washing cycle. This should remove the toothpaste stain, leaving your shirt looking fresh after drying.

How Do You Get Toothpaste Out Of a Shirt Fast? 

Many toothpaste products have some dye in their formulation, so it can be a tad more difficult to get rid of the stains, especially on white shirts.  So in the event that some toothpaste smears your clean shirt but you don’t have enough time to get it laundered properly, here’s how you can get your shirt cleaned fast: 

  1. First, remove as much toothpaste as you can using a dry cloth.
  2. Moisten a clean white rag in a slight soap solution and then gently dab at the stained spot.
  3. Lastly, air-dry the affected spot. It should not be long before it completely dries and you’re on the move again. 

Note: Resist the urge to put the shirt in a dryer because heat can cause any remaining toothpaste to set into the fabric, resulting in an unpleasant whitish smudge.

Other Tips For Getting Toothpaste Out Of Shirt

If your shirt is going to survive an encounter with toothpaste, then you need to bear a few points in mind:

  1. Acting fast can mean the difference between getting toothpaste out of your shirt the easy way or the hard way. Due to the nature of some toothpaste, late intervention may sometimes lead to permanent discoloration of the fabric as in the case with hydrogen peroxide toothpaste. 
  2. Don’t just clean the affected spot on your shirt with water alone. Granted, the spot may look okay but it will have a chalky appearance when dry. Simply follow the cleaning instructions above to prevent that from happening.
  3. Ambient heat can set any remaining bit of toothpaste into the shirt’s fabric. So it’s a good idea to avoid putting the shirt in a dryer after washing. After a few more washes and you’ve confirmed that the toothpaste stain has indeed been removed, you can dry the shirt in any way you like.

How To Remove Old Or Dried Toothpaste Stains From Clothes

Removing old, set-in stains can be tricky, but it can be done. If you’ve got toothpaste stain on your shirt that won’t come out despite multiple washes, don’t lose hope yet – try this: 

  • Drench the stained spot with a generous amount of vinegar, preferably cleaning vinegar-like Green Gobbler because they are more concentrated.
  • Next, rub a paste containing equal parts vinegar and baking soda on the moistened spot. You may add some detergent into the mix to make it more effective.
  • Fill a laundry bucket halfway, add an appropriate amount of detergent, then dunk the shirt and let it soak overnight.
  • The next morning, wash gently. Your shirt should look much better when it dries.

How to remove a toothpaste stain without washing?

The best way to get toothpaste out of a shirt is by washing it. Toothpaste has bleaching tendencies and even the smallest residue can bleach your clothing. But let’s assume you’re late for an interview and don’t have the luxury of picking another piece of clothing or washing.

Depending on where the stain is and if you have a handheld sprayer, force water from the back of the clothing at the spot where the toothpaste stain is. This should dissolve and flush out all the toothpaste.

Try to get out as much as you possibly can. Then dab the wet area with a soft towel. DO NOT use paper towels!

Are Toothpaste Stains Permanent?

Toothpaste stains will not leave a mark if swiftly taken care of, but if the toothpaste contains whitening agents or some other harsh ingredients and is left to stay long enough on a piece of clothing, then yes, it may cause permanent damage. 

We take it, some toothpaste stains still won’t come off completely after a few mild treatments. In that case, you need to go hard on them. Simply follow the instructions in the previous heading to get rid of stubborn toothpaste stains. 

Does Toothpaste Bleach Clothes?

Yes, toothpaste can bleach clothes especially if it’s a whitening toothpaste; they contain gentle bleaching agents. For this reason, a little blob of toothpaste can leave a slight but noticeably bleached area when it comes in contact with colored shirts and is left unattended for too long. In most cases, the blemish cannot be reversed. 

Toothpaste smug can be even more precarious on a silk shirt, but if you act swiftly you may still redeem it from permanent damage. Simply follow the steps outlined in this article to get toothpaste out of your silk shirt, but instead of loading it into a washing machine, you may need a more focused approach: washing by hand.

Why Is It So Hard To Get Toothpaste Out Of My Shirt?

Most toothpaste brands that look white contain an ingredient, titanium dioxide, that gives them their white appearance. But this oxide does nothing to enhance the appearance of your teeth – only the toothpaste. It is also responsible for the chalky smudge you get after washing toothpaste off with water. 

Getting toothpaste out of your shirt appears hard because you probably use only water in your attempt at cleaning it; the chalky stain will just reappear when the shirt dries. However, when you follow the steps for getting toothpaste out of a shirt (outlined in this article), then it wouldn’t be so hard.

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