How to Remove Old Coffee Stains from Clothes

If you’re a coffee drinker, chances are that you’ve experienced the horror of spilling your hot beverage on yourself. 

Coffee is a popular drink, but sometimes it can leave stains on your clothes. Stains are usually brown or dark brown. Coffee stains are caused when oils from the coffee beans get onto your clothes.

While some stains may be too old or too severe to remove, there are ways to get rid of most coffee stains.

To learn more about removing old coffee stains from clothes, continue reading this article.

Can You Remove Old Coffee Stains from Clothes

Yes, old coffee stains can be removed from clothes. You can use baking soda, vinegar, dishwashing detergent, bleach, or baby powder.

How to Remove Old Coffee Stains from Clothes

There are several ways to remove old coffee stains from clothing. The best method depends on how old the stain is and how much time you have to work with it.

Step 1: Determine the Clothing’s Fabric

The first step toward removing old coffee stains from clothes is to determine what type of fabric the garment is made of. This is important because different fabrics react differently to different cleaning agents. The following are some common types of clothing fabrics and how to treat them:

Cotton: Wash cotton garments by hand or in a washing machine with warm water and detergent. Add one cup of white vinegar to the wash cycle for extra stain removal power. Rinse well, then dry in a low-heat setting.

Linen: Hand washes linen clothing using cool water and mild detergent. Rinse well in cold water, then lay flat or hang to dry in the sunlight. 

If possible, avoid drying linens in direct sunlight as this can cause yellowing over time.

Step 2: Pour Water Over the Garment

For this step, you will need a sink or container filled with cool water. If you are using a sink, fill it with enough water so that it is about three inches deep. 

The more water you use, the better. This will help dilute any soap or detergent that is left on your clothing after removing the stain.

Step 3: Prepare the Cleaning Solution

Next, take an empty spray bottle and fill it up with distilled white vinegar, water, and dish soap. 

Then spray some of this solution on top of your stained clothing and let it sit for at least ten minutes before proceeding to Step 4 below.

Step 4: Soak the Garment

After letting your stain sit for about ten minutes. Make sure the stained area is fully soaked.

Step 5: Rinse the Garment

Rinse out all traces of the mixture from your garment by running cold water through it several times until there is no longer any soap residue left on the garment.

Step 5: Apply Liquid Detergent

If your clothes are made from cotton, apply liquid detergent directly to the stain and rub it with your fingers until it’s completely absorbed into the fabric. 

Let it sit for about 10 minutes before washing it again with hot water and laundry detergent. 

If there are still some stains remaining after rinsing, repeat this process until all traces of coffee have been removed from the garment.

Step 6: Rinse the Garment and Wash

After soaking your clothing in detergent, rinse it well under running water until all traces of soap have been removed from its surface (this may take several minutes). Then wash it with laundry detergent.

Other Ways to Remove Old Coffee Stains from Clothes

Baking Soda

Baking soda is a great way to get rid of old coffee stains because it can be used as an exfoliant, which removes dirt and oil from the fabric. 

Sprinkle some baking soda over the stain and let it sit for about five minutes before washing your clothes as normal in warm water with detergents or detergent-free laundry soap. 


Vinegar is another common household item that doubles as an effective stain remover for old coffee stains on clothes. Vinegar has natural antibacterial properties that make it great at removing odors, but it can also help break down the protein bonds in protein-based stains like blood and dirt, including old coffee stains.

To use vinegar, simply soak your stained clothing in a solution of equal parts water and vinegar for 15 minutes before washing in warm water with detergent.

Use baby powder

Baby powder will help absorb the moisture in the fabric and reduce the visibility of any remaining stains. 

Simply pour some baby powder on your stained garment, rub it in gently and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, brush off any excess baby powder and wash as normal.


Pour 1/2 cup of bleach into a bowl filled with warm water and soak your stained garment in it overnight. In the morning, add more bleach to the water if necessary and launder as usual.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol may be able to lift dried coffee stains out of fabric. Pour some rubbing alcohol onto a clean white cloth or sponge and blot at the stain until it disappears completely. Wash as usual after removing all traces of rubbing alcohol from your clothing.

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