How To Remove Mold from Fabric & Clothes: Different Ways

Mold or mildew can not only stain your clothes but also damage them in the long run. Have you ever noticed white or grayish patches in your clothes?

How to Remove Mold from Fabric

Those patches indicate mold or fungus has started to become cozier on the surface. So, I will tell you how to remove mold from fabric as well as some other objects.

How to Remove Mold from Fabric & Clothes

Step 1: Getting Rid of the Spores

In the case of machine-washable mold stains, you need to take care of the fungus spores at first. So, take the clothing outside, better if it is sunny.

Go ahead and brush off the excess spores off of the clothing item. Make sure to brush the fungus spores from both sides of the clothing.

A word of caution, these mold spores can cause an allergic reaction, so if you have asthma, I suggest you wear a mask while dusting this pesky powder off.

Step 2: Pre-treatment

Now that the brushing part is over, pre-treatment of the fabric is necessary. You have to focus on chemicals that have enzymes that help break down the mold components.

There are mold cleaning detergents available in the market; grab any of those and soak the mold-infested clothing for about 15 minutes.

The soaking time may change depending on your clothing item. Then go on and wash off the wet area with warm water.

Step 3: Time to Add Bleach

Now that the warm water washing is over, you will need to add bleach to the mold-stained area. It is a bit tricky, but your clothing item’s type will determine whether you have to use bleach or phenolic disinfectant.

In the case of cotton fabrics that are 100% pure cotton, you can use chlorine bleach as that does not affect the white color.

Prevent using this chlorine bleach on your colored clothing items as this chemical is strong enough to break down colors and will damage the color of your dress.

For this reason, use pure phenol disinfectants that can break down the mold components without ruining the color.

Both the chlorine bleach and phenolic disinfectant helps to kill those pesky mold spores. But if these disinfectants do not remove stains, you can additionally use oxygen bleach to make your clothes look new again.

Step 4: Oxygen Bleaching

So how does the oxygen bleach work? This gentle bleach helps to get rid of stains without ruining your clothes. It essentially helps to provide a boost to your regular detergent so that stains are removed more easily.

You have to add the oxygen bleach mixture to the washer tub before adding any stained or mold-infested clothes.

Now simply mix the oxygen bleach with water to create a proper solution. While this bleach is suitable for cotton, I suggest you not use it on silk items.

Step 5: Basic Washing

After the oxygen bleach soaking and treatment is over, go on and wash the fabric as you usually would. The moldy stain will most likely not be there anymore but if it is, repeat this oxygen bleaching method several times as necessary.

Final Step

Do not forget to give your washer a clean to remove any lingering mold spores and odor.

How to Get Mold Out of Fabric Furniture

Regular clothing material and fabric furniture are not the same. Hence, the mold removal process of these two is entirely different, and the items also vary. Here, you will know the best way to remove mold from fabric furniture.

Step 1: Exposure to the Sun

Most of the time, we forget that fabric furniture requires sunlight exposure from time to time. So, the first step is sunlight exposure of the fabric furniture.

Just as before, wear up your mask/gloves and dust off the excess moldy spores using a vacuum cleaner.

Step 2: Vinegar and Alcohol Treatment

Now you will need both rubbing alcohol and vinegar to finish off work. First, make sure to rub the vinegar solution to the mold-affected areas.

Then top it off with some rubbing alcohol so that future mold attacks do not occur. Remember to dilute this alcohol mixture for better results.

Step 3: Prevention

If you want to strengthen the mold prevention even further, occasionally provide sunlight exposure to your fabric furniture aside from that initial rubbing alcohol treatment.

Read Next: How to get candle wax out of clothes & fabric

Removing Mold From Fabric Cushions

Are you tired of your outdoor cushions becoming moldy? Here are some easy steps to remove mold from fabric cushions.

Step 1: Dust off Excess Mold

This mold removal method is super easy as all the ingredients are already present in your kitchen. You guessed right; simple dishwashing instruments will be enough to take care of those stubborn moldy cushions.

At first, remove the dusty mold portions of the cushion. You can remove the excess mold with the help of a brush or vacuum. Also, you can use a surface cleaner to treat the moldy area.

Step 2: Mold Removal Mixture

Now you have to create the mold-removal spray with these items-

  • 1/4th cup of any dish soap of your choice
  • A surface cleaner
  • Enough water

Get a moderately big bucket and mix 1/4th cup of dish soap and sufficient water. Now you can pour this dish soap-water solution over the cushions and leave them to soak for a while.

Remember to wear gloves for this soaking part to ensure your safety.

Step 3: Let the Cushions Breathe

The central part of mold removal from the cushions is over, and now you have to wait. Leave the soaked cushions for about 5-10 minutes before rinsing them off. Finally, allow these fabric cushions to dry properly.

Remove Mold From Fabric Shower Curtains

Bathroom shower curtains are practically a hotspot for mold growth just because there is not enough sun exposure and the overall shallow environment. Here are ways to remove mold from fabric shower curtains.

Step 1: Take off the Curtains

First things first, take off the moldy curtains. Instead of super harsh chemicals, I will talk about the natural/home ingredients you can use to remove mold or stains in this method.

Step 2: Use Home Ingredients

Borax, hydrogen peroxide, vinegar, baking soda, etc., are proper ingredients for mold removal. Take some water and hydrogen peroxide to create a mixture. This solution must include hydrogen peroxide and water with a 2:1 ratio.

Step 3: Soak the Curtains

Just as before, let this hydrogen peroxide/water mixture sit for about 5-10 minutes.

While your moldy shower curtains are soaking, go ahead and create another baking soda-water mixture. Remember, you are to make a baking soda paste, so no need to use too much water.

Step 4: Add a Baking Soda Mixture

This baking soda mixture will act as a scrub. Use a soft brush to coat the mold-infested area with this mixture and give it a stern rub. Repeat this process until the mold and stain are removed.

Final Step

Now that the baking soda-water scrubbing is over, wash the curtains and dry them properly.

Getting Rid of Molds with Baking Soda

Have you ever used chemicals to treat mold, and instead, your clothes became damaged? One remedy is using a baking soda-vinegar mixture, which is just harsh enough to remove the mold issue without ruining your favorite dress.

Here are steps about how to get mold out of clothes with baking soda.

Step 1: Ingredients

Gather these ingredients-

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar/water
  • Brush
  • Spray bottle

Get the dusty mold particles off by using a brush at first. Once the dry molds are gone, clean up the brush to remove mold residuals.

Step 2: Make the Solution

Here, you will take that spray bottle for baking soda solution. You can create this solution with either vinegar or water will be sufficient.

Now, if the mold components are too persistent, use vinegar instead of water. Take about 1/4th cup of baking soda and mix it up with the solvent of your choice.

Step 3: Soak and Wash

Go ahead and spray this baking soda-water mixture in the moldy area, or you can soak the whole cloth as well. Let the stale material stay in the soaked state for about 30 minutes before washing it.

One pointer, when you wash this mold-infested cloth, make sure the water temperature is hot.

Final Step

Now you can sun-dry this previously moldy cloth for further mold prevention.

Removing Mold without Bleach

I have previously talked about bleach as a mold-removal option. If you have some pure cotton moldy items, bleach will be your go-to option.

But for the colored clothes? That is a big no-no. This article on removing mold from fabric without bleach will help you.

Lemon and Salt

The lemon and salt method is an easy alternative to using bleach. Gather some lemons and squeeze out the juice appropriately.

Now, remember that to remove mold, you need a paste-like consistency. So, get enough salt to create a lemon-salt paste.

This lemon juice works well for mold removal because of the lemon’s acidic properties.

Now, as before, let the lemon-salt-soaked cloth sit for about 30 minutes before rinsing and drying it.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

Baking soda is an incredible choice for mold removal from clothes, curtains, cushions, etc. These home ingredients can remove mold infestation pretty well.

Create a paste of baking soda (1/4th cup amount) and vinegar. Then use a soft brush to use this baking soda paste on the moldy areas. Let the clothing sit for 15-20 minutes and wash it off.

Borax and Hydrogen Peroxide

Like the previous baking soda paste, you have to use hydrogen peroxide and water to create a paste. Remember to use a 2:1 ratio for hydrogen peroxide and water. This 2:1 ratio will provide excellent results.

Soak the mold-infested area of your cloth with this paste, and rub gently. After you wash off the paste, allow the fabric to dry.

Deal with Black Mold Stains

Nobody wants to open their drawers to find black mold infestation on their favorite clothes.

Not only does the black mold stain ruin your cloth’s aesthetics, but it also causes health issues. So how to remove black mold stains from fabric? Here are the steps.

Step 1

First off, take the mold-infested item away from indoors to an open space. Now use a soft yet disposable brush to dust off the excess mold. Get rid of the brush after the mold-dusting is over.

Step 2

Get hot water and soak this dusted, moldy fabric in hot water. I have previously talked about oxygen bleach in this article. Get some oxygen bleach and add that to the hot water.

Step 3

Now soak the moldy cloth properly, and use either a long spoon or your hands to make sure all parts come in contact with the oxygen bleach mixture. Go ahead and leave this cloth for 30 minutes.

Step 4

After the soaking part is over, take this cloth out of the oxygen bleach mixture and wash it in either a machine or manually. However, this time, use white vinegar and water mixture to wash this cloth.

Final Step

Now take this clean cloth and sun-dry it properly to prevent the black mold infestation from reoccurring.

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Final Words

Moldy clothes are not just a cause for stains in your favorite clothes but also a reason for health hazards, especially for allergic people.

Instead of professional mold and mildew removal, try out some of the removal methods I have explained. I guarantee this how to remove mold from clothes and fabric article will do the job perfectly.

Hi, I'm Robert Jameson. I'm a textile engineer. As a textile engineer, I design & create fabric. When I'm not busy with my family members, I research, write, and edit content for Fabric Fits.

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