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Expert cleaner shares 'genius' tip for salvaging clothing stained by ink: 'I wish I had known this a long time ago'

"It works marvelously." 

ink-stained shirt

Photo Credit: iStock

Ink stains can be notoriously difficult to remove, but an easy hack eliminates that frustration with just one household ingredient — isopropyl alcohol

The scoop 

Nicole Jaques (@itsnicolejaques) posts home hacks and how-tos on her Instagram page, and her hack for removing ink stains couldn't be more simple. 

All you need is 70% isopropyl alcohol and a toothbrush. First, you'll want to test the fabric to ensure that the alcohol won't cause any damage by putting a small amount on an insignificant area (for example, the inner waistband of a pair of pants). 

Once you've confirmed it's safe to use on the fabric, pour the alcohol over the stain and let it sit for 30 minutes. If the stain hasn't dissolved after that time, scrub it with a toothbrush until it's gone. Afterward, you can put it through the laundry as usual. 

The hack even works on more than just clothes, "Alcohol will take the ink out of fabric, your hands, or even tabletops!" Jaques explains. 

How it's helping 

This hack will allow you to reliably and conveniently get rid of ink stains, and if you don't have isopropyl alcohol, Jaques mentions that alcohol-based hair sprays or hand soaps will work too.  

The hack may also be a better option for the environment — especially if you want to get rid of a hairspray or hand soap you don't like. You'll be utilizing a product that would otherwise end up in a landfill — therefore saving money and diluting any harmful chemicals from these items by releasing them in small amounts rather than dumping them all at once. 

Plus, while isopropyl alcohol isn't necessarily beneficial for the environment, it's not significantly harmful in small quantities like this. The hack also removes the stain on the first try, so there's no need to send your clothes through the wash multiple times to get it out. 

The average washing machine uses 20 gallons of water per load, so decreasing the number of times an article of clothing goes through the wash will conserve water, too. 

What everyone's saying 

The hack was valuable information to many, based on the comments. "Just in time for back to school!" wrote one user, while another said, "I wish I had known this a long time ago." 

Other commenters could vouch for the hack's effectiveness, one user wrote, "I use the hairspray trick and it works marvelously." 

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