blonde lady smiling without deodorant stains on her white top

How To Remove Sweat Stains & Deodorant Stains

Sweating is inevitable, it's a natural process of the human body that takes place when the body needs to cool down. And we've all experienced the dreaded yellow stain on our favourite white top that just won't budge. Find out how to remove & prevent deodorant stains & sweat stains with our help.

But first, why do we get sweat stains & deodorant stains?

Sweat stains are caused by sweat mixing with your skin's natural bacteria, your deodorant or even your clothing. If you were to look at the colour of sweat as a chemical component you would see that it is not yellow coloured, it's these reactions that cause it to turn yellow.


Deodorant stains are different from sweat stains - these are usually white marks made up of antiperspirant particles that contain salts and other ingredients designed to help prevent sweating. When you sweat through these ingredients they can form solid stains that are often hard to remove in the wash.


How To Remove Sweat Stains

  • White vinegar
    - Soak the stained area of clothing in white vinegar for an hour and then brush the area with a clean toothbrush, flannel or brush, making sure to be thorough but not too aggressive on the clothing.Then wash as usual in the washing machine.
  • Baking soda & hydrogen peroxide
    - Using 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water, create a thick paste using the two and then use a clean toothbrush to brush the sweat stain out. If the clothing you're concentrating on is white you can add hydrogen peroxide to make the white extra bright.
  • Lemons
    - Mix equal parts lemon juice with water and scrub the stain. Once you've done this you should leave the clothing in direct sunlight to allow the lemons natural bleaching effect to take action on the clothing.
  • Salt
    - Salt works as an abrasive cleaning agent to scrub the stain out. You'll need to put some elbow grease into it because it doesn't have any natural bleaching effect, but this can be used on clothing of all different colours.

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 sticks or roll ons, so using a pair of nylon tights, or a textured flannel can help budge this. Once you've scrubbed the stain wash as usual.
  • Lemons
    - Use the same method when using lemon juice for deodorant stains as you would for sweat stains - mix equal parts lemon juice with water and scrub the stain.

  • Stain remover detergent
    - Using a detergent stick or formula specially created for removing stains means that the chemicals work harder against stains left on clothing, so if you've only been using regular detergents this far to remove deodorant stains, think about adding a little extra muscle
  • White vinegar
    - Use the same method when using white vinegar for deodorant stains as you would for sweat stains - soak the stained area of clothing in white vinegar for an hour and then wash as usual.
  • Baking soda
    - Use the same method when using baking soda for deodorant stains as you would for sweat stains - using 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water, create a thick paste and then use a clean toothbrush to brush the stain out
  • Aspirin
    - Similar to using baking soda or salt, crush three or four aspirins and make a paste. Use a clean toothbrush to brush the stain out and then wash as usual.


But the best way to remove sweat stains & deodorant stains is to prevent them

Investing in a deodorant that is effective and works for you is most important when trying to prevent clothes straining.

What deodorant you should use and when:

  1. Roll on: Roll on deodorant is really useful if you're going to be active as you can get full coverage that you can feel so you'll know if you've missed a spot. However, if you're in a rush in the morning and you've used roll on deodorant you may not be allowing it enough time, and therefore your clothes will more likely be left with hard to remove stains.
  2. Spray: Spray deodorants are perfect if you're in a rush as they don't require drying time before getting dressed, and can be used to freshen up easily when out and about. It's important to use an effective antiperspirant spray if you find you're often getting sweat stains or deodorant stains as this will reduce the amount you sweat all together. Try the NIVEA Black & White Invisible Fresh Anti-Perspirant Deodorant Spray, designed to provide 48H protection, but protect against white and yellow stains on clothing.
  3. Stick: Much like roll on deodorant, stick deodorant is perfect when you want to make sure you're covering your entire armpit, but they do require drying time. They're also very effective if you're very active and need extra protection against sweating.  
  4. Anti-Stain: If you have a preference on which type of deodorant you like, NIVEA have a selection of anti-stain deodorant that are specially designed to prevent deodorant stains, so you can wear your favourite deodorant without the worry.
  5. Anti-Perspirant: Sweat less by using an anti-perspirant deodorant. It works to block sweat from escaping from the pores in your armpits, which in turn helps to reduce yellow sweat stains, and white deodorant stains.