How to Get Sunscreen Out of Clothes? – (Easy steps)

Last Updated on October 12, 2023

Hey there, Teresia here from The Sewing Stuffs, and we understand how frustrating it is to discover sunscreen stains on your favorite clothes. So, how to get sunscreen out of clothes?

How to Get Sunscreen Out of Clothes


  1. Remove excess sunscreen using a tissue immediately to prevent deep stains.
  2. Apply washing up liquid to the stain, gently rubbing it in to break down oil-based components.
  3. Soak the garment in a mixture of equal parts cold water and white vinegar for an hour to lift stubborn stains.
  4. Take advantage of sunlight’s natural bleaching properties by air-drying your garment outdoors.
  5. If stains persist, repeat the process until the garment is completely stain-free.

But don’t worry!! We have some easy tricks to help you remove these stubborn spots using everyday household items like white vinegar and washing up liquid.

How to get sunscreen out of clothes

How to get sunscreen out of clothes

To remove sunscreen stains from clothes, blot excess cream, apply washing up liquid, rinse, soak in a vinegar-water solution for an hour, launder following care label instructions, air dry in sunlight, and repeat if needed for a stain-free garment.

 Let’s dive right in and rescue your wardrobe from those pesky stains.

1. Act Quickly

The key to tackling sunscreen stains is to act promptly. If you spill sunscreen on your clothes, grab a tissue and blot the area to remove as much of the cream as possible. The quicker you address the stain, the easier it will be to remove.

2. Use Washing Up Liquid

Use Washing Up Liquid
Use Washing Up Liquid

Start by directly applying a small amount of neat washing-up liquid onto the stain. Gently rub it in, ensuring it covers the entire stained area. Washing up liquid is excellent at breaking down oil-based stains, which is exactly what sunscreen stains are.

3. Rinse and Soak

Rinse and Soak
Rinse and Soak

After thoroughly rubbing the washing-up liquid, rinse the garment with cold, clean water to remove the soap. Then, prepare a solution of equal parts cold water and white vinegar. Soak the stained garment in this solution for about an hour. Vinegar helps break down the sunscreen’s oils and lift the stain from the fabric.

Can You Use Washing Up Liquid in the Washing Machine if Out of Washing Powder?

According to B. Belt from Quora:

“I just found out you can BUT only a small amount or you will have bubbles everywhere. I haven’t tried it yet but was reading yesterday & came across this very question & answer. It actually makes sense to me because I spot wash stains all the time with dawn & oxiclean.

It works great, although I usually rinse the area pretty well before putting into the washer. I’m going to try it tho next time I’m out of laundry soap. Id be careful only to use a capful or so. Test it so you don’t end up with a mess:)”

Source: –

4. Launder Your Clothes

Once the garment has soaked for an hour, check the care label to ensure it’s safe to machine wash. Follow the washing instructions provided on the label and launder your clothes normally. This step helps to remove any residual stain and leaves your clothes fresh and clean.

5. Harness the Power of the Sun

If the weather is sunny, consider hanging your freshly washed garment outside on a clothesline. The sun acts as a natural bleach and can help lighten any remaining oil stains. Sunlight is a fantastic ally in the battle against stubborn stains.

6. Repeat if Necessary

Repeat if Necessary
Repeat if Necessary

If, after following these steps, you still notice some staining, don’t fret. Simply repeat the process until the stain completely disappears. Sometimes, stubborn stains require a bit of persistence.


We recently used these steps on a similar vest that had stubborn sunscreen stains around the front. Following this method, we managed to completely remove the stains, leaving the vest looking as good as new.

So there you have it – a simple and effective way to banish sunscreen stains from your clothes using items you likely have at home. Give it a try, and soon, your favorite outfits will be stain-free and ready to wear.

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