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White residue on black clothes

White residue on black clothes

The culprit behind those white spots on black clothes after washing is sometimes difficult to determine. There are a number of different reasons why you might spot some white stains on dark clothes, but it is usually due to the water or the detergent. Let’s take a look at the causes of white marks on black clothes, and how to get rid of them. 

What causes white residue on dark clothes after washing?

As mentioned, there can be lots of different causes of those little white stains on dark clothes. It can be frustrating to have just done a load of laundry only to find that your clothes look dirtier than before! By identifying the cause of the white residue on black clothes, you can help prevent it in the future. Here are some of the most common culprits:

  • Too much detergent: It might sound counterintuitive but using lots of detergent might leave your clothes dirtier than they were before. Excess detergent can leave white marks on black clothes, especially in high-efficiency washers where less water is used. If your clothes are especially soiled, try using the prewash function or soaking them before your wash, rather than using more detergent.
  • Too much fabric softener: Just like using too much detergent, using too much fabric softener can also leave white stains on dark clothes after washing. Again, reducing the amount you use can help avoid this problem.
  • Water hardness: Areas of particularly hard water might mean that you get some mineral deposits on your clothing when washing. You can add water softening tablets to your wash to help prevent this.
  • Too many clothes: If you have a big family and need to wash frequently, you’ll be familiar with the temptation to load as much laundry as will fit into your washer. Unfortunately, this also means that the job you want to get done efficiently becomes more hassle than it is worth. An overloaded washer won’t be able to wash your clothes properly, meaning that they don’t get clean and, in the worst case, will end up dirtier than before because of those white marks.
  • A final reason might be deodorant. This requires some special steps, so check out our article on deodorant stains to help!
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How to remove white stains from dark clothes

If you’ve spotted some white marks on dark clothes after washing, the best thing to do is act quickly. This is true of any stain on clothes, and it’s so the stain doesn’t set and become harder to get out. The best thing to do is to wash the garments at the highest possible setting—but not so hot that you damage the garment. Check the care label for the heat that your garment can tolerate. At this point, you’ve probably realized that more detergent isn’t always the best way to get clean clothes, and the same applies here. For white stains on dark clothes, don’t add any more detergent in case the stains are caused by the detergent. Wash your clothes until the white marks have gone away—that’s it!

We hope this has helped you understand why white residue forms on black clothes—and how to remove it! If you want more tips and tricks to up your laundry game, check out the laundry section on our website.