When my son was still a baby, I couldn’t picture how mums with kids have a hard time keeping their homes clean. Now that my son is a year old and actively leaving all sorts of mess behind, I finally get it. And while we can’t stop our kids from turning our walls (and carpets!) into a life-size canvas, we can rely on these cleaning solutions for stains that they love to make.

Chocolate drips

Kids agree that the best way to eat chocolate is to have it all over their faces and, sadly, their clothes. Before you wash their shirts, use a spoon or cloth to wipe any excess chocolate. Then use your fingers to massage the liquid detergent into the stained spot. Let it sit for five minutes before washing with soap and water. Wash them with all-fabric or chlorine bleach, depending on the clothing material, if the stains are stubborn.

If the chocolate somehow made their way to your precious couch or carpet, act fast and remove as much of the chocolate as you can. Gently blot the area with a damp sponge with liquid detergent. Use water and a clean sponge to remove the soap, then dab the spot with a cloth to dry.

Crayon drawings on walls

Your walls are your children’s favourite spot for showcasing their drawing skills. Don’t worry. A little dry-cleaning solvent on a terrycloth towel, plus a little scrubbing, is your cleaning solution for walls with crayon marks. However, this trick is not ideal for antique wallpaper. So, use a wall eraser instead.

To remove crayon from clothes, scrub the spot with a soft brush to break up the stain. Then soak the shirt in undiluted vinegar for about 30 minutes before washing it with soap and water.

Grass stains after playtime

A picnic day at the park or playtime at the garden can leave grass stains all over our kids’ shirt. Before washing it like usual, make sure to soak it first for about five minutes in a stain-removing detergent. And if the care instructions permit, wash the shirt in hot water and bleach. Now, you can worry less once your children start getting into sports!

Ink marks here and there

Here’s another stubborn stain your little ones are likely to put on their clothes (or themselves!). While stray ink marks on hands or faces are easy to rub off with plain water, ink on clothing requires extra care. Start by laying the garment on a towel, stain side down. Next, dab the stained area with rubbing alcohol, rinse, apply some stain remover then wash as usual.

Juice spills

Spills happen every day with kids. And in case they get too excited when drinking their fruit juice, these cleaning solutions for stains should do the trick. First, flush the fruity stain from clothes with cold water. Next, mix half a tablespoon of liquid detergent, one tablespoon of white vinegar and 1L of water. Soak the stained garment in the mixture for 15 minutes then launder as usual. If the stain remains, blot the area with rubbing alcohol before washing again. For juice spills that landed on the carpet, spray the spot with club soda and blot then repeat until the stain is gone.

Tomato sauce (ketchup) mess

Who doesn’t like tomato sauce or ketchup? Kids practically pair the sauce with everything. Of course, that includes their clothes. Good thing we got cleaning solutions for stains like this, too. So, in case a few dribs (and smears) ended on their garment, scrape off any excess sauce then rinse it with cold water. Then put some liquid detergent on the spot and use a soft brush to tap and break the stain. Rinse the garment then use a sponge to dab the spot with vinegar then rise again. Keep blotting the area with vinegar and rinsing the garment until most of the stain is gone. Wash it with bleach.

Mud all over the place

They roll over it, splash through it, make buildings out of it. Kids love muddy adventures. But the best thing about mud stains is that you don’t have to wash them right away. Rubbing wet mud on garments will only push the stain deeper into the fabric, making the stain harder to remove. So, let the mud dry up first. Then use a soft brush to scrape it off. Treat the garment with stain remover then wash as usual.

If you see muddy footprints on your carpet, don’t fret and do the same technique. Let the mud dry up first. When dry, use the vacuum to remove as much dirt. Next, stir in one tablespoon of liquid detergent in two cups of warm water. Dab the solution on the stained spots using a clean cloth then blot to dry. Repeat these steps and once the stain is gone, dab the area with water then blot dry.

Stickers stuck everywhere

In case your little one took house decorating a little too seriously and stuck stickers all over your home, brush them with baby or vegetable oil. Then let them soak in oil overnight. The next day, lift and pull the stickers. You can rub more vegetable oil on the surface if some sticker goo remains. Wipe the surface with a damp cloth.

Thanks to these cleaning hacks for stains, our kids can enjoy being kids without driving us into a cleaning frenzy! And while it’s essential to keep our house free from visible dirt, some invisible germs need to be taken care of, too. Check out these tips on how to disinfect your home to avoid infections and diseases.