Whether you love climbing trees or you’re a hero who just rescued a cat from a tree, you may have sap over your clothes. In this guide, we go over the different processes to get tree sap out of your clothes.
Before You Begin
The first thing you should do when dealing with tree sap on your clothes is get rid of it before trying to clean the stain. This will prevent the stain from setting or becoming harder to remove later. Also, you should treat tree sap stains as soon as you notice them. The faster you act, the easier it will be to get rid of the sap.
How to Get Tree Sap Out Of Clothes
Tree sap is sticky and turns into some dirt magnet when it stains your clothes or shoes. If you leave it for too long, the sap will form a thick layer on your cloth and start attracting dirt that may be difficult to remove. Luckily, there are some ways you can get rid of this gluey tree sap off your clothes. Here are 10 of them:
1: Laundry Detergent
You can use a high-quality laundry detergent to clean tree sap stains off your clothes. This will help break up the stain easily:
Step 1: Remove excess sap carefully using a spoon or a blunt knife.
Step 2: Mix your powdered detergent with equal parts of water. Stir together until you have a fine paste.
Step 3: Apply the stain on the affected part of the cloth using a sponge or rag.
Step 4: Leave the paste for 30 minutes and launder your cloth once the stain is no longer visible. If the stain remains, apply a few drops of Ammonia.
Another option to remove tree sap stains from your clothes is using the bleach method. You should be careful with the type of clothes you use bleach on to avoid bleach stains.
Step 1: Perform a colorfast test by soaking a cotton ball in bleach and then apply over a hidden area of the cloth. Dab the area after one to two minutes. If the color comes off, the cloth isn’t colorfast. If no color comes off, the garment is colorfast, and you can continue with this process.
Step 2: Apply the bleach over the stain and leave for about 20 minutes. You can also add some detergent to the mix for more effectiveness.
Step 3: Use a brush or rag to work in the bleach. Repeat step 2 if needed.
Step 4: Wash your cloth at a high temperature or as indicated on the care label.
3: Rubbing Alcohol or Hand Sanitizer
Rubbing alcohol and hand sanitizers contain Isopropyl Alcohol which is suitable for treating different stains, including tree sap. Meanwhile, alcohol can cause some damage to certain fabrics, so you should be careful while using this method. Test an inconspicuous part of your cloth with rubbing alcohol before using it.
Step 1: Use a spoon or butter knife to scrape off excess sap. You can add some ice cubes or throw the cloth in the freezer to harden the sap and make it easier to remove.
Step 2: Soak a rag or cotton with rubbing alcohol and rub it into the stain. You can also use a soft-bristled toothbrush to rub in the rubbing alcohol.
Step 3: Repeat the process until the stain is no longer visible.
Step 4: Wash clothes using regular detergent and a normal washing cycle.
This might sound weird, but many people have used this method, and it worked! To use sunscreen to remove tree sap, follow these steps:
Step 1: Remove excess tree sap using a blunt knife and scrape as much as possible.
Step 2: Spray or apply some small amount of sunscreen on the affected area and rub it against it using a brush or sponge.
Step 3: Wash your clothes as usual.
5: Mayonnaise or Peanut Butter
You can use your kitchen ingredients like mayonnaise to remove tree sap stain. To do this, scrape out excess sap and follow these steps:
Step 1: Apply some mayonnaise over the stain and leave for up to 5 minutes
Step 2: Use a sponge to rub the stain and wash your cloth as normal.
6: Ice Cubes
Ice cubes work for gum stains and can also work for tree sap because of its gluey nature.
Step 1: Remove excess tree sap stains and place the garment on a flat surface.
Step 2: Hold some ice cubes against the stain until it freezes.
Step 3: Use a spoon or other blunt object to scrape off the frozen sap.
Step 4: If the stain is still visible, proceed with soaking a cloth in vinegar and rubbing it into the stains.
Step 5: Rinse the affected area under running water and wash as normal once the stain is no longer visible.
7: Freeze The Cloth
Just like ice cubes, this process works by freezing the stain. Here are the steps to follow:
Step 1: Throw the affected cloth into a bag and place it inside the freezer for up to 15 minutes. The sap should be hard by then.
Step 2: Use a butter knife to scrape off the hardened sap. You should do this immediately: tree sap melts fast.
Step 3: Apply a solvent like vinegar, rubbing alcohol, nail polish remover, or peanut butter to lift the stain completely.
8: Stain Remover
Some chemical-based stain removers can help you get rid of messy tree sap stains effectively. Once you’ve removed excess sap stains, follow the steps to use this method:
Step 1: Pour a capful or two of the stain removal over the affected area.
Step 2: Use a soft-bristled brush to rub in the stain removal and leave for some minutes.
Step 3: Place your stained cloth inside the washer and wash at hot temperature or as indicated on the care label.
8: Baking Soda + Detergent
Baking soda is another product you can use to remove sticky sap stains from your garment. It’s best to mix the baking soda with some detergent for more effectiveness:
Step 1: Make a paste by combining some baking soda with detergent and water.
Step 2: Apply the paste over the stain and let it sit for up to 1 hour.
Step 3: Scrape off the sap using a spoon or blunt knife. You can also apply ammonia to remove visible stains.
Step 4: Wash your clothes using the regular cycle.
WD-40 is useful for removing adhesives like tree sap stains. To use this method:
Step 1: Soak a rag in the WD-40 solution and squeeze it over the stain. Leave for a minute.
Step 2: Use the rag to rub in the stain until no traces of the sap are left.
Step 3: Launder your cloth with your regular detergent.
How To Remove Dried Sap From Clothes
It’s best to act fast when dealing with tree sap stain to prevent it from drying up. However, it’s still possible to get rid of the dried tree sap with extra effort. Here are some steps to get rid of dried sap from your cloth:
1: Scrape The Sap
Use a blunt knife or spoon to scrape as much sap as possible. Be careful while doing this to avoid scraping your cloth.
2: Apply a Solvent
There are different solvents you can apply to lift the sap stains, including rubbing alcohol and stain removal. Soak a cotton ball or cloth in the solvent and apply to the stained area. Rub the stained area using a rag until the sap starts washing out.
3: Launder Your Cloth
Wash your cloth using the hottest water suitable for your cloth.