How to naturally remove stains with the sun
It’s the ultimate, old-school hack that no-one’s talking about until now… sunshine stain removal. The sun’s been around for about 4.6 billion years and has been used to remove stains and brighten our whites way before chemical detergents, washing machines and dryers transformed the way we launder. A method used for many centuries and some might say, the original cleaning hack, it’s also natural and doesn’t cost a cent. Too good to be true? Let’s investigate…
Here comes the sun
There’s no denying it, the sun works wonders when it comes to stain removal. A natural bleaching agent, it helps remove unwanted marks from your clothes and kills germs with the power of its UV (ultraviolet) light. A form of electromagnetic radiation, UV can come naturally from the sun (UV contributes to 10% of the total light) or through artificial sources like UV lamps. The thing with UV light is that it’s strong, like really strong. It’s powerful enough to break molecular bonds through chemical reactions, which alters physical properties and even destroys living tissues or organisms in high doses. So let’s get down to the nitty gritty, how exactly does the sun lift stains?
The UV light in sunshine gets rid of stubborn blotches and freshens up whites by breaking down the stains in the bonds until they can no longer hold, therefore transforming them. Like we previously mentioned, it can destroy harmful living organisms like viruses, bacteria and protozoa, making it a multi-purpose and go-to disinfectant for a bunch of different scenarios. Not only has science proven the effectiveness of UV light when it comes to stain removal, it also works in the air, food and drinks, and water sanitation. In moderate doses, UV light can work wonders.
When using sunlight to remove stains, two chemical reactions take place.Chemical reaction 1: A stain is a chemical interaction between two different materials
Chemical reaction 2: UV rays break down the chemical bonds in the stain and causes fading
Sounds easy right? Before you try this tried-and-tested method, read our top tips and tricks to increase its effectiveness.
Top Tips & Tricks
- Wash your clothes as you normally would with your go-to Dirt laundry detergent (no need to pre-soak)
- Hang it in direct sunlight and ensure there’s no overlapping or coverage (we recommend using the first line)
- No clothesline? No worries. Lay it flat in front of direct sunlight on a chair or table (fun fact: this also works indoors, next to a window)
- For those hard to remove stains, spray lemon and water onto the area, letting it soak for 30 minutes before you pop it in the wash (the citric acid in lemon is like an ultra boost to help break down stains and reinvigorate your whites)
- Don’t leave your clothes out in direct sunlight for more than 3 hours as you run the risk of over bleaching
- This method is only effective for surface stains
And there you have it, a sustainable, cost-effective and au naturel way to get rid of unwanted marks, kill germs and make your whites whiter, with the power of the sun.
Prefer not to read? The proof is in the pudding, view our reel to see sunlight in action (hyperlink).
Need some extra help? Try our Stain Remover Starter Pack