Does Green Tea Stain Clothes?

Green tea has emerged as a leading option among revitalizing beverages. Most people now prefer to start their day with a cup of green tea.

However, accidents or mishaps can occur, and the last thing you want is a damaged cloth from spilled green tea. If you spill this beverage, the first thing that would pop into your mind is, ‘will it leave any stain?’

Well, green tea does leave a stain on clothes, and it consists of a particular ingredient named tannin, which is responsible for causing stain marks. Fortunately, green tea is a water-based drink, implying that you can get rid of the stain using water. However, it’s crucial to treat the color in the first place.

In this blog, explore why green tea leaves stain on clothes. Also, uncover the methods to remove the stain mark in case you accidentally spill it on your clothes. So, let’s start.

Does Green Tea Stain Clothes?

Green Tea Stain Clothes

The answer is unfortunate. Green tea leaves stain marks when you accidentally spill it on your clothes. Although the stain mark is not permanent, things cannot be undone if left unwashed just after the spilling.

Tannin is why your green tea leaves a stain on your clothes. Tea comprises several active elements, and tannin is one of them. Tannin is a polyphenolic element that holds together protein and several other organic compounds.

The amount of tannic acid present in regular tea is around 11.2%. If you spill the green tea on light-colored apparel, you’ll find brown hues as stain marks. That happens due to the highly pigmented compounds in the tea named chromogens.

Even though green tea stain marks are temporary, the stain will become much sturdier if left untreated for an extended period. At times, you can find the stain marks to be permanent too, and in that case, you can effectively remove the stain by rinsing the stained portion of the cloth right away.

The color of the stains differs due to the varied level of tannin present in multiple types of tea. Here is a table for your better understanding:

Types of TeaTannin Level (On Average)Stain Color
Green tea3.1%Light brown
White tea0%Transparent or no stain
Black tea13.40%Brown
Oolong tea8.65%Brown

What Makes The Green Tea Leave Stains On Clothes?

The reason why green tea leaves stains on your clothes is tannin. These chemicals originate and develop in a plant named Camelia Synesis, and this parent plant is responsible for producing the most tea leaves – oolong tea, black tea, etc.

Green Tea Stain Clothes

Besides the nutritional benefits, this tannin provides color and flavor to tea leaves. Compared to all other teas, green tea has minors, and consequently, the stain caused by green tea is weaker than the stain caused by black tea.

Furthermore, the extent you brew the tea also determines the number of tannins in any tea. So, if you brew the green tea for a more extended period, the stain caused by its spillage will be sturdier.

Methods To Getting Rid of Green Tea Stains

Getting rid of stains caused by green tea is no big deal. Moreover, it’s recommended to go for home remedies as it doesn’t involve any extra costs. All you have to do is pick items already there in your home and get started. Any of these below-mentioned methods will work in your best interest.

Green Tea Stain Clothes

Method 1: Using Baking Soda

You may already know that when it comes to removing stains, there’s no better household item than baking soda, and it has the power to assimilate smells, making it the ideal homemade stain cleaner.

Nevertheless, when it comes to green tea stains, baking soda can only do wonders if it’s applied without any delay. Also, it will only work if the paint remains wet.

The best way to use the baking soda is by applying it on the stain and leaving it as it is overnight. It will absorb most of the green tea over the night, leaving you only to scrape off the remaining colors in the morning. After all, this, put the stained cloth on the washing machine.

Then, dry the apparel. One of the safest ways to do this is air-drying. Please avoid using the standard dryer, as it can make the stain bigger. If the baking soda doesn’t work, you’ll need a more powerful cleaning agent. The following method can help you with that.

Method 2: Using Vinegar Solution

Vinegar is yet another effective method of removing green tea stains from your clothes. This method will save you the cost of purchasing any extra cleaning agent, and it reaches the deepest layers of the apparel’s fabric, making it even more potent than baking soda.

Green Tea Stain Clothes

Note: It’s highly recommended to prepare a solution of vinegar and water for the application on cloth for stain removal.

Now, pour the prepared solution into a bowl. Place a cleaning cloth on this bowl of solution. Then, slowly and efficiently work from outside and tap the stain. It is essential to follow to prevent the paint from getting spread. Repeat the gently tapping process until you find the color going away. If not, take a break while pouring some vinegar on the apparel.

Do not delay putting the cloth inside the washing machine when you find the stain dissolving. However, remember not to leave the vinegar on the material for a longer span as it can adversely impact the fabric fibers. Once all is done, air dries the cloth.

Method 3: Using Laundry Detergent & Dish Soap

One of the most immediate solutions to deal with the green tea stain problem is dish soap. You can use it just like you use vinegar. Just prepare a dish soap and water solution and slowly pour it on the stain. Then, gently tap the paint while working from outside. Once done, clean out the excess. 

Green Tea Stain Clothes

You can use a distinct way to apply the laundry detergent on the stain. First, you will have to use warm water to wet the paint. Subsequently, use the laundry detergent by sprinkling it on the stained area. Wait for 5 to 10 minutes. Now, use a spare toothbrush to scrub off the stain. Lastly, use warm water to rinse it off.

Additional Methods To Remove Green Tea Stains

If none of the above methods work in your favor, you will have no option but to use bleach. It’s always recommended as the last resort if none of the other methods works. The reason is bleach’s potent chemical properties can destroy the apparel’s fibers. Thus, choosing the suitable bleach for your specific piece of clothing becomes crucial.

The safest choice is to go with a bleach pen. Nevertheless, you can also try preparing a chlorine bleach solution. When it comes to large-sized stains, the ideal solution is to place the cloth within the solution for at least 15 minutes. Then, go and see the condition of the paint. Repeat the steps if required; once done, wash the garment thoroughly.

This method is only applicable when the green tea stain is too old. It’s also helpful when using any other cleaning agent that doesn’t seem to fetch results. Before going for the bleach removal solution, try these methods:

  • Lemon and salt
  • Club soda
  • Oxidizing stain removal

These comprehensive methods should be enough for you to get rid of your green tea stains. The more you wait to remove the color, the more damaging process you have to opt for, like the bleach solution. If you care too much about the clothing piece and don’t want any damage to it, consider specialist cleaning.

Hopefully, you have all the answers you need about green tea stains and their removal from this guide. No one has control over accidental spillage, but at least now you know what to do in such an event.



I'm Jessica Flores, a professional fashion designer and an expert seamstress. Crafting has always been a deep-seated passion of mine, one that has flourished and evolved over the years. I've dedicated considerable time to both studying and practicing in the realm of fashion and sewing, amassing a wealth of experience and skills. It brings me great joy to share these insights and experiences with you all, hoping to inspire and foster a similar passion for the art of sewing.

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