How to Get Butter Stains Out of Clothing

Large Cube of Seasoned Butter and Thick Sliced Bread.

Removing Butter Stains

It’s one of those morning where you’re not all there (can someone say Monday?) You’re having some buttered toast for breakfast and your about to take a bite but right before it gets to your mouth, your grip slips and the toast is falling. You’re able to catch it but right up against your shirt. Sound familiar?

How about when you go out for a seafood dinner. Lobster tail, king crab, shrimp. They’re all so delicious, but dipping it in all that butter can leave some serious stains on your shirt and your pants. I’ll bet this sounds all too familiar as well?

Butter is a common staple in most homes and it’s the kind of stain that can happen quite often during baking, watching a movie and eating popcorn, eating pancakes – but do you know how to get butter stains out of your clothes?

Removing Butter Stains from Everyday Clothing

There’s always more than one way to remove stains. These are just one of those ways to remove butter stains from clothing.

Step 1. Removing Excess Butter

If applicable, remove excess butter with the edge of a dull knife or spoon. Do not try to lift it away with something like a paper towel as that can spread the butter making the stained area larger. Which then it also makes sense not to rub at it either.

If you’ve been out to dinner and dripped butter on your clothes, chances are you won’t even notice until you get home, at least that’s how it always works for us. With melted butter there is no excess to remove just blot with a paper towel to see if you can remove some of the butter. Again, do not rub the area.

In either one of these cases, rinse the stained area with water afterwards, then move on to the next step.

Step 2. Apply Pre-Treatment to the Stain

Pre-treat the stain by applying a grease fighting liquid laundry detergent directly onto the affected area. A product like Tide Ultra. If you don’t have that at hand, you can use a grease fighting dish soap, such as Dawn dishwashing liquid.
Gently rub the liquid into the stain and let this sit for at about 30 minutes. Do not rinse out before washing. Leaving the pre-treatment on helps give the wash a little extra cleaning power.

Step 3. Wash Your Clothing

The next step is to run your clothes through a normal wash cycle with similar clothes in warm water – but check the care label and make sure a warm water wash is OK to use. Use a grease-fighting laundry detergent, something like Tide Ultra, and wash your load.

Step 4. Check the Stained Are Before Putting in the Dryer

Let the garment air dry a bit until you can tell for sure the stain is gone. If the butter stain is still visible, try pre-treating and washing again.

If you don’t check to make sure the stain is gone prior to putting it in the dryer, the heat from the dryer can permanently lock in the stain.

Removing Butter Stains from Delicate Fabrics

If the care label suggests the piece of clothing is delicate, the below method can help remove the butter stain.

Step 1. Removing Excess Butter

Refer to Step 1 above.

Step 2. Use Absorbent Powder to Lift Stain

Use an absorbent powder like baking soda or cornstarch to lift the butter stained area. If you don’t happen to have these you can use talcum or baby powder.

Generously sprinkle the powder over the area of the stain and let sit overnight.

Step 3. Wash as Directed by Care Label

Shake it out in the morning and wash as care label states for the delicate fabric you have.

There you have it. No need to toss your clothing! Knowing how to get a butter stain out of your clothes means the next time it happens, you’re prepared and know what to do.