7 In Wardrobe Wellness

Lipstick on cashmere could spell disaster

Hairspray and clothes care

The role of hairspray in clothes care

It happened like this.

Erin and I were parking on Polk Street in San Francisco near where one of our clients lives. Erin, my assistant and eldest daughter, was wearing cashmere because she’s experienced with June weather in SF. She lives there. (Caution: If you’re from out of state and you’re coming here this summer, pack your cashmere!)

So the BE (Brenda+Erin) team was getting the closet appointment supplies out of the car. Erin pulled out the portable rolling rack and I pulled out the over-the-shoulder bag holding our Wardrobe Workout Charts, wardrobe tools and necessities; plus iPad, notebook, and appointment book. It’s a two person job!

As Erin pulled the portable rack out of the back seat she somehow managed to get her own lipstick on her cashmere sweater, her ivory cashmere sweater, near the shoulder area. She does yoga. That would have to explain the dexterity!

“Oh no!” she said.

“Don’t worry,” I said.

“Do you know how to get this out?” she asked with a mix of desperation and disgust in her voice.

“Don’t panic,” I reassured her. I was about to wow her with my remedy and couldn’t wait!

We schlepped our stuff up the stairs to the third floor apartment where our client lives. When we got in her door I asked her if she had some hairspray. “Sure!” she answered. “Extra hold?”

“Doesn’t matter,” I said. “Any hairspray will do. Oh, and I’ll need a clean rag or towel, too.”

I asked Erin to take off the sweater. (She was wearing a layer underneath it–folks, San Francisco can be freezing in the summertime!) She went off to set up the rack in our client’s bedroom and I went to work on the lipstick stain in the kitchen. I aimed the nozzle at the stain and sprayed, lightly, no need to douse it. Then I took the clean towel and started dabbing at it, not rubbing. Just pressing. It moved a little onto the towel but I needed to apply another coat, dab some more and then another coat and more dabbing to follow: a total of about 2 minutes.

“Hey you guys!” I shouted. “Come take a look!”

They both came into the kitchen and saw what I saw: nothing. The lipstick stain was gone. Both Erin and this client are in their 30s. They were impressed! Maybe you’re older and wiser and have used this technique before but if you haven’t, it is amazing! Just hairspray and a clean rag, some dabbing, and the lipstick will lift off the sweater and move over to the towel instead. See that lower picture on the bottom left of the collage image above? You don’t see a thing, right? Just ivory cashmere? That’s where the stain was!

It’s fun to be older and wiser and I love not spending money on dry-cleaning bills. You might need to try this sometime!  I hope it works as well for you!

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  • Reply
    Carolyn Warden
    June 26, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    Got Sharpies? Same treatment removes Sharpie & permanent ink stains from fabrics. If item has already been washed & dried (it happens) treatment still works though you need to repeat it. BLOT do not rub fabrics while treating stains.

    • Reply
      Brenda Kinsel
      August 29, 2014 at 10:35 am

      You know, I just had this happen with a tee shirt of mine, Carolyn! I’m going to try it! I pulled it out of the wash, saw the mark and thought, well, this is going to be a night shirt instead of a going out shirt from now on. Maybe there’s still hope! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Reply
    Denise Lampron
    July 27, 2017 at 7:02 pm

    Brava and thank you for the tip!

    • Reply
      July 27, 2017 at 7:05 pm

      Love to share solutions!

  • Reply
    Kathleen Hughes
    October 11, 2018 at 11:51 am

    Works on ink too.

  • Reply
    Nichole Thalji
    October 16, 2018 at 8:58 pm

    Tried it tonight. My friend’s velvet lipstick on my cream color cashmere sweater. Hairspray & Just like new!!!! Xoxo for this tip

  • Reply
    January 16, 2019 at 2:59 pm

    Tried this but unfortunately it did not lift any lipstick from the sweater. Guess I’m headed to the dry cleaner.

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