5 Ways To Remove Common Stains & Spills On Your Home Furnishings

26 October 2021 | BY

Even if you’re extra careful, there’s almost no way to avoid dirtying your furniture and rugs. Here are some common ways to clean up that stain or spill.

common stains - cover image

There’s virtually no way to avoid dirtying your furniture and rugs – even if you’re extra careful, messes happen especially if you have young ones and pets constantly running around the home. And removing them, as most of us know, is almost never a guarantee.

Whether it’s that splash of red wine on your brand new beige couch or the scribbles left on the rug by a toddler, here are some common ways to remove stains and spills when they happen in your home.


common stains - coffee
Image credit: DepositPhotos

Whether it’s rushing to get a cup of coffee in the morning before work or an honest mistake of placing the wine glass too close to the edge of the coffee table, it can be stressful to meet with a coffee or red wine mishap. Especially since these two beverages are infamous for their extreme staining ability and difficulty to remove from upholstery.

So the next time this happens, don’t vigorously try to rub the stain out in a panic, but follow these standard operating procedures for a better chance at total stain removal:

For coffee stains:

  1. Start off by gently dabbing at the stain with a paper towel until most of the excess liquid has been absorbed.
  2. Put a little salt on the stain and drizzle sparkling water over.
  3. Let the mixture sit before patting dry.

Repeat the steps until the stain fully disappears.

Red wine and soda

common stains - wine
Image credit: DepositPhotos

For red wine and soda stains:

  1. Mix 1 part dishwashing liquid to 1 part white vinegar and warm water.
  2. Use a cloth to transfer the solution onto the stain.
  3. Use a dry cloth to pat the excess water away.
  4. When the stain is gone, clean the area with a towel and cold water.

If these methods don’t work, sprinkle baking soda over the stain and let it sit until the surface dries and vacuum the excess off.

Pet stains

Pet owners will know the struggle of painstakingly toilet-training their pets only to have them doing their business on the carpet or sofa in a freak turn of events. 

common stains - pet
Image credit: @teddy.thechowbear

The next time your pet decides that your fabric sofa or rug is the perfect spot for marking their territory, try this trick to remove pee stains. 

  1. Soak up as much as liquid as possible with paper towels or a rag.
  2. Combine a 1:1 ratio of water, white vinegar and two teaspoons of baking soda in a spray bottle.
  3. Wet the affected area completely and let mixture sit for roughly five minutes .
  4. Blot dry.


Having a piping hot meal in front of the TV whilst binge-watching Season 3 of Netflix’s YOU is picture perfect for most of us. Even as careful as one may be, spills and stains do still happen to the best of us. 

For grease stains: 

  1. Dust a generous amount of baking soda over the affected area and leave it for 15-30 minutes.
  2. With a vacuum, clean up the loose baking soda and give the stained spot a scrub with a soft-bristled brush and some dishwashing soap.
  3. Dab clean with a moist paper towel.

Marker & pen ink

Whether it’s a child who decided that the couch and carpet would be perfect for their next art project or an accidental drop of a pen, there’s many ways markers can get to your beloved furnishings. 

To salvage your furniture or fabrics, you can either use rubbing alcohol and white vinegar solution, or use an aerosol hairspray for leather couches. 

For ink stains on fabrics:

  1. Gently dab the stain with a cloth and lukewarm water. Avoid rubbing it in as this might make the stain even worse. 
  2. With another clean cloth, use rubbing alcohol and again, gently blot at the mark. 
  3. Alternatively, create a solution with one tablespoon of white vinegar and about 150ML of rubbing alcohol. Gently dab at the mark till it comes off.

For ink stains on leather:

  1. Spray the stain with an aerosol hairspray and let it soak in.
  2.  Rather than scrubbing at it, dab with a paper towel instead until the stain disappears.

Removing stains 101

Stains can be annoying to deal with but are sadly part and parcel of life. Don’t panic the next time an accidental mark appears on your furnishings. Instead, take a deep breath and follow the steps above to deal with the different types of common stains.

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