blonde lady smiling without deodorant stains on her white top

4 Tips On How To Remove Sweat Stains & Deodorant Stains

Sweating is unavoidable: it's one of the body's natural processes, and it occurs when the body needs to cool down. But we've all encountered those dreaded yellow stains that just won't budge on our favourite white tops, and there are a few things that you can do to get rid of them. Find out how to remove sweat stains and deodorant stains with our help.

Why do we get sweat stains & deodorant stains?

If you want to understand how to remove sweat stains, it helps if you understand how they got there in the first place - even if the science behind them is decidedly unglamorous. As we shall see, their appearance is partly due to the chemicals that are present in antiperspirants: chemicals which are, ironically enough, there to prevent you from sweating quite so much in the first place.



Sweat stains are formed when your sweat reacts with the bacteria on your skin, your clothing and certain chemicals, e.g. aluminium, in the deodorant that you are wearing. If you were to view sweat in isolation, you would find that it is not yellow-coloured; rather, it is these reactions which cause it to turn yellow.



Deodorant stains are different from sweat stains - these are the infamous white marks, and they are formed when aluminium salts, an active ingredient in antiperspirants, are transferred onto your clothes.

How to get rid of sweat stains

How to Remove Sweat Stains

If you wish to know more about how to get sweat stains out of clothes, the good news is that there's no shortage of tried-and-tested methods.


So let's explore how to get rid of sweat stains and ensure that you look your best when out and about. Bear in mind, however, that removing perspiration marks often induces more than a little perspiration!


White vinegar

  • Soak the stained part of your clothing in white vinegar for an hour and then scrub with a clean toothbrush, flannel or brush
  • Aim to be thorough without being too aggressive on the clothing. Once you have finished, rinse as usual in the washing machine.


Baking soda & hydrogen peroxide

  • Using three parts baking soda to one part water, create a thick paste and then rub the mixture into the sweat stain with a clean toothbrush
  • If the clothing that you are cleaning is white, you can add hydrogen peroxide to make your whites look extra bright



  • Mix equal parts lemon juice with water and scrub the stain
  • Once you have finished doing this, leave the clothing in direct sunlight. This will allow the lemons' natural bleaching properties to take effect on your clothes.



  • Salt is a mild abrasive which can be used to scrub out the stain
  • You'll need to use a lot of elbow grease, however, as salt does not have a natural bleaching effect

brunette lady trying on clothes without sweat stains

How To Remove Deodorant Stains

lady in black dress free from deodorant stains

Nylon tights 

  • Some deodorant stains are caused by a build-up of deodorant from deodorant sticks and roll-on deodorants
  • Rubbing a pair of nylon tights or a textured flannel on these stains can often do the trick. Once you have finished scrubbing the stain, wash as usual.



  • When using lemon juice to remove deodorant stains, use the same method as you would for sweat stains: mix equal parts lemon juice with water and scrub the stain


Stain remover detergent

  • Using a laundry detergent that has been specially formulated to remove stains may provide the extra muscle power required to shift the most stubborn of stains


White vinegar

  • Soak the stained area of clothing in white vinegar for an hour and then rinse as usual


Baking soda

  • Create a thick paste by mixing three parts baking soda to one part water, and use a clean toothbrush to scrub out the stain



  • Crush three or four aspirin tablets and mix with half a cup of water until you produce a paste
  • Use a clean toothbrush to apply the paste to the stain and rinse as usual

If you want to avoid having to remove sweat stains & deodorant stains, however, there are lots of ways in you can prevent them

Trim your armpit hair

A great way to keep your pits nice and dry is to trim your armpit hair. You may also find that wearing an undershirt helps prevent white marks from appearing on your favourite shirts.

What deodorant you should use and when

Investing in a deodorant that works for you will also help prevent stains.

  1. Roll on: roll on deodorant is very useful if you lead an active lifestyle, as it allows you to achieve full coverage - you'll know if you've missed a spot. Switching to a roll-on deodorant is also likely to decrease the chances of your clothes becoming stained, so it may be wise to switch to roll-on from now on. Just make sure that you allow it time to dry before you get dressed.
  2. Spray: spray deodorants are perfect if you're in a rush, as you won't need to wait for them to dry before you get dressed. Use an antiperspirant spray if you find that you often get sweat stains, as doing so will reduce the amount that you sweat altogether. Try the NIVEA Black & White Invisible Fresh Anti-Perspirant Deodorant Spray, which is designed to provide 48H protection and prevent white and yellow marks from forming on your clothing.
  3. Stick: much like roll-on deodorant, stick deodorants are perfect when you want maximum coverage; you will need to wait for it to dry, however. Stick deodorants are ideal if you exercise frequently and require extra protection from excessive perspiration.  
  4. Anti-Stain: NIVEA offers a selection of anti-stain deodorants that are designed to prevent deodorant stains, so you can wear your favourite shirts without the worry
  5. Antiperspirant: wave goodbye to yellow sweat stains and white deodorant stains with an antiperspirant deodorant. Antiperspirants block the pores on the outer layer of the skin, reducing the amount of sweat produced by your armpits.