I Beat the Ink!

21 May 2008
If you've read my post The Day the Ink Made Mom Insane, you know that we had an ink pen stowaway in the dryer last week. Evidence pointed to it being stashed in a hidden pocket of a pair of cargo pants. After finally getting all the ink out of the dryer I was left with the chore of attempting to salvage the clothes. Naturally, it was a load of the kids school clothes that suffered the inking. I tried a few things I found online like spraying hair spray, Goo Gone, Biz, and Oxy Clean, but nothing seemed to work. After multiple washings I was at my wits end. My very wise grandmother told me to stick the clothes in a trash bag and pop them in the freezer, since I didn't want to dry them a second time, so they would not sour. She was completely confident that I would find a way to rescue the clothes.

So today, I took a bunch of online suggestions and mixed them up. I really had nothing to lose, if the ink stains stayed we just had more play clothes. In a huge stockpot I mixed one cup of Purex 2 color safe bleach powder, one scoop of Sun oxygen cleaner, and 3/4 a scoop of Surf detergent with water. I brought this whole mess to a boil on the stove, then turned to simmer. I then sprayed aerosol hair spray on all the ink spots, then scrubbed with a stiff rag - this alone had not worked the first time around and did not look to be working this time. I then put one piece of clothing at a time in the pot and let simmer about 15 minutes each. It was a long process, but the house smelled great all day. As I took each piece out of the pot, I threw it into the washer and let it soak in cold water with an additional scoop of the Sun oxygen cleaner. After all the clothing had been "cooked" it was all ran through the cold water/Sun washer load again.

I was absolutely amazed at the results! Only one short/shirt set is still stained, a very pale pink set. Everything else looks great! Warning: this did seem to fade the clothes a bit, but I'm honestly not sure if it was this treatment or one of the dozen I tried before this. So, if you are at the last resort stage, this might be a stain treatment to try. It's kind of a long process, but totally worth it! The idea of clothes in great shape being ruined forever was really bothering me.

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