So THAT's How To Get Halloween Stains Out Of Kids' Clothing

Fake blood on their coat? Face paint on their shirt? These household items can help shift even the most stubborn stains.
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There’s nothing quite like the laundry fest that ensues after Halloween – between the fake blood spillages and the chocolate-stained jumpers, your washing machine might end up working overtime in the weeks to come. (RIP your energy bill.)

According to an analysis of Mumsnet data, the most common stains parents are faced with during the Halloween period include: chocolate, fake blood, pumpkin guts, face paints and sweets.

But how is best to tackle them when your child’s clothes are thoroughly coated in brown smudges and bright red patches?

Here, experts at M&S Kidswear share their stain-busting tips.

1. Chocolate

I don’t know about you but I definitely get excited over chocolate treats and inevitably end up with some down me, so it’s no wonder that kids end up coated in the stuff during spooky season.

Thankfully there’s a relatively simple way to get chocolate stains off clothing or Halloween costumes.

“Blot away any excess chocolate on their clothes with a clean cloth and make a paste of baking soda and water,” advise experts.

Apply the mixture to the stain and let it sink in for 15 minutes. Then, rinse the paste off with cold water and repeat the process until the stain has gone.

Finish by washing the fabric with cold water and leaving to air dry.

2. Sticky sweets

Whether it’s a Refresher lolly or the residue from a toffee apple devoured on Bonfire Night, candy stains can be a royal pain in the backside to remove from clothing – especially coats.

“To remove a sticky stain, first spray the affected area with some plain water to dissolve the sugars,” suggest the M&S pros.

“After this, use a spoon to remove any of the remaining sweet and follow up with white wine vinegar and work it into the fibres.”

They recommend to finish with washing the item of clothing as you normally would.

“Be especially careful when using vinegar as it can lighten the treatment area so always test in a hidden spot first,” they add.

3. Pumpkin

With pumpkin picking season in full swing, chances are your little ones will end up covered in ‘pumpkin guts’ at some point this month (and if not, you’re doing well!).

Experts advise the best way to remove pumpkin stains from clothing is to remove any excess pumpkin with a spoon or dull knife first – and avoid scraping food off as this will push the stain deeper into the fibres.

Then rinse the stain under cold water to loosen it.

“Pretreat the stain with a prewash stain remover and put it into the wash at the highest temperature that is indicated as safe on the washing label,” add the experts. “If the stain remains, blot the area with white vinegar and wash again.”

4. Face paint

It’s best to wash face paint marks by rinsing them with cold water as soon as you notice them, rather than waiting for them to dry.

If the stain has dried, experts suggest covering it with an alcohol based cleaner or pre-wash stain remover and then rinsing with cold water to release the paint from the fabric, washing normally afterwards.

“Always check the face paint packaging as you may find advice there,” they add.

5. Fake blood

If your tiny vampire ended up covered in more fake blood than you’d hoped – and their clothes got coated too – listen up.

Washing wizards recommend treating fake blood stains carefully with white vinegar and soaking the clothing overnight before washing with a biological detergent. If the clothing is wool then use the same approach, just with non-bio detergent.

“When treating stains always refer to washing instructions and be aware that using stain removers and DIY tricks can bleach or change the colour of the fabric so it’s a good idea to test in a hidden spot before treating the stain,” they conclude.