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How to Take the Yellow Stains Out of Heirloom Baby Clothes

Updated on August 8, 2013
notyouraverageal profile image

Mom. Homeschooler. Mystery shopper. Editor. Wife. These are a few words to describe notyouraverageal. Her life is anything but average.


Your baby's clothes aren't ruined!

I used to think that baby clothes were ruined when they yellowed. I'm sad to admit how many cute little outfits I have gotten rid of because I couldn't get the stains out.

In the past, I had tried everything from bleach to dish detergent to vinegar, and nothing worked. I finally gave up and decided just to get rid of the clothes.

Recently, I unpacked a box with both of my kids' first Easter outfits in it. This little dress and outfit were so sweet back when my babies were babies. I was sad to find that they had yellowed so much from being packed away.

I thought I'd have to get rid of these too or just settle for yellow heirlooms. Then, I tried an experiment.


I put the clothes in a bowl of milk.

I couldn't stand the idea of the clothes souring, so I put the bowl in the refrigerator.

My kids thought I was nuts.

My husband thought I'd lost it.

My dog wanted me to spill the milk.


First, I let the clothes soak overnight. Since I rarely get 8 hours of sleep, this probably was about 6 or 7 hours of soaking.

The next morning, I was anxious to see what happened, so I washed the clothes in my washing machine. They came out cleaner but still a little yellow.

I tried again, and this time, I soaked the clothes for 24 hours in the bowl of milk in the refrigerator. After soaking them, I washed them in regular detergent in the washing machine.


As you can see, the results were amazing. The once-yellow clothes were back to their sweet little colors!

I've tried this on other baby clothes, and it worked on them too. I hope you have the same success!


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      Julie 4 months ago

      Does any milk (2%, whole, skim) work? We only drink skim, but will buy whatever!

    • notyouraverageal profile image

      Al 4 years ago from Florida

      You know, I'm not sure! That would be a good science project for my kids!

    • profile image

      Haley 4 years ago

      Do you think it matters how much fat is in the milk? We have skim.