Tips and Strategies to Remove Stains From Your Wedding Dress on Your Big Day: And What to Have on Hand to Help You

A white wedding dress helps ensure you stand out on your big day, but it also means that the material can easily attract stains. You can do a few things to reduce the risk of stains on your big day, such as putting the dress on at the last minute and being careful while eating and drinking. But what if you still get a stain?

Even the best wedding gown dry cleaning can’t show up at your wedding and clean your gown in seconds. They’re a better option if you notice a stain before the big day. The following tips will help you remove those stains or at least cover them up. Then, when your big day is over, your wedding gown preservation company will remove the stains before carefully folding and preserving your gown.

Know Your Material

Before we get into the tips for removing stains, it’s important to note that there will be some differences based on the material of your gown. For example, silk and lace are very delicate.

What Supplies to Have on Hand

Set yourself up for success by making sure you have the tools you may need on hand to get stains out of your dress—or to hide them. Remember that even if you can’t remove the stain, hiding it is a good temporary solution. Then, let the dry cleaning service know about the stain before they preserve your gown.

The following are all useful for stains, plus a few bonuses for other last-minute wedding dress adjustments:

  • White vinegar
  • Chalk
  • Cotton balls
  • White dish soap
  • White towels
  • Corn starch
  • Baking soda
  • Baby powder
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Stain remover pens
  • Stain remover wipes
  • Needles
  • Thread
  • Double-sided tape
  • Nylon tights

Never Rub Stains

The most important thing to keep in mind is that you should never rub stains. Any experienced local laundry service will tell you that this could easily make the stain worse. So, avoid the urge to rub the stain. Instead, you need to dab or blot at it.

Ideally, you want to use a white cloth or towel to soak up the stain. This is especially true for liquids. Hold the cloth in place for a few seconds, then move it. Always make sure that you blot your dress with something clean.

Test Your Cleaning Method in a Hidden Spot

Before doing anything to your wedding gown in an area that’s obvious, always test the method in a hidden spot. From using rubbing alcohol to confirming the chalk matches your dress’s color, this is important. It means that if something goes wrong, it’s unlikely to be noticed.

How to Tackle Specific Stains

With those basics out of the way, take a look at how to remove some of the most common stains without dry cleaning services. Remember that even if you think you mostly removed a stain, it’s still smart to mention it to the company doing your wedding gown preservation, most likely the result of your search for a “dry cleaning near me.” They’ll be able to confirm the stain is thoroughly gone.

Drinks, Including Wine

One of the most common types of stains on your wedding dress is a spilled drink. Whether it is juice, red wine, champagne, or something else, you want to act quickly. Liquid stains can set if you don’t take care of them soon.

Combine a mixture with three parts of water and one part of clear dish soap. Then, dab this mixture onto the stain carefully.


What if you spill some oil on yourself during your wedding dinner? Combine equal amounts of dish soap and white vinegar. Then, grab a clean white cloth and put it under the stain. Finally, dab the mixture onto your dress with a cotton ball. This should push the stain onto your towel. Once the stain’s gone, remove the scent by dabbing warm water.


Makeup is yet another category of stain that eco-friendly dry cleaning frequently sees on wedding dresses.

Lipstick or other types of lip color can be challenging, but you will get better results if you tackle it right away. Try water and soap but be ready to cover or hide the stain. Maybe have a cute broach on hand and cover your dress when putting on makeup.

While lip colors are tricky, other types of makeup typically come off your dress with just a makeup remover and a damp cloth.


Given how frequently deodorant stains show up on clothes, it’s no secret that they’re a concern for wedding gowns as well. The good news is that baby wipes and tights work.

Earth and Dirt

Whether you are just taking pictures outside or having your ceremony or reception outside, dirt, grass, and earth stains are common. Any wedding dress dry cleaning service will see these stains regularly, especially near the bottom of gowns. But what can you do on the big day?

Ideally, you want to take a dry towel. But don’t get the towel wet or put any cleaning solution on it at first. If that doesn’t work, dampen the towel slightly.

Grass (Leave It to the Pros)

While you can blot off most earth and dirt stains, you should just leave grass stains on your gown until your dry cleaning services. Trying to get out a grass stain without the right materials or knowledge or without a lot of time can be a recipe for disaster. You can make it worse or damage your gown.

More importantly, the stain is likely at the very bottom of your gown, so no one will notice it.


If you somehow get blood on your gown, dip a clean white cloth in cold water. Blot the stain with this, switching to clean areas of the cloth as necessary.

Take Advantage of Dress Dry Cleaning Before and After Your Big Day

If you notice stains with time before your big day, contact a local dry cleaning service. You may be able to ask for expedited service. And after your big day, schedule dry cleaning before you preserve your gown to ensure it is stain-free.



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