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Red wine, gravy and cranberry sauce: Christmas stain removal guide

Red Wine, Gravy And Cranberry Sauce Christmas Stain Removal GuideChristmas is a time for joy, love, giving, good food, family and, unfortunately, stains. All of that over-indulgence, cooking, drinking and merriment can lead to spillages – often on your best tablecloth.

But getting gravy, cranberry sauce, grease or mulled wine on your floor, furniture or soft furnishings doesn’t have to mean that they’re ruined. If you’re willing to put in a little time and effort to get rid of stubborn Christmas stains, your belongings will be left looking as good as new.

Here’s how to get rid of three of the most stubborn Christmas dinner-related stains:


The darker the colour of gravy, the stronger and meatier its taste – but, sadly, this also makes it more likely to leave stains behind should drips fall from the gravy boat.

Because gravy is such a stubborn stain, you will probably need to use a proper detergent to tackle it, especially on carpet or pale fabric. You might need to leave your damaged item to soak in the detergent for a little while and some tough scrubbing may well be needed to get rid of that pesky gravy for good.

But it’s worth the effort, as it of course means you don’t need to pay to replace your damaged items. And if you really can’t bring yourself to get rid of the stubborn gravy for yourself, you could treat yourself to the luxury of a professional cleaning company, who’ll be able to leave your home looking spick and span ahead of the new year.

Red wine

Red wine, or mulled wine made from the tipple, is one of the worst drinks to serve up at a Christmas party if you want to avoid stains. But at the same time, it’s wonderfully festive and leaves everyone feeling lovely and merry, so it’s worth the risk – as long as you’re prepared with some stain removal tips for after the party’s over.

To remove red wine stains from fabric, start by dabbing at the mark with a cloth that’s been dipped in boiling water. Be careful not to rub, as this could make the wine soak in to the fabric – this stage of the stain removal process is all about soaking up any excess liquid.

Next, you need to sprinkle a generous amount of table salt over the stain. When it reacts with the hot water, the salt may fizz a little or begin to form a paste – this is completely normal. After around five minutes, or when all of the salt has dissolved, scrub at the stain with a cloth. This should help to remove the worst of the damage, while a quick spin in the washing machine should finish off the job.

Cranberry sauce

Cranberry sauce is not only deep red like mulled wine, but it also has a thick, gloopy consistency, so it can be a bit more of a challenge to remove, as there is stickiness as well as stain to contend with.

You can make a homemade stain remover using ingredients you’ve most likely already got in your cupboard to tackle cranberry sauce.

Combine around half a teaspoon of laundry detergent with a tablespoon of white vinegar and a little cold water. Spread this concoction over the stain and leave it to soak in for around 15 minutes.

Then, scrub at the stain, finishing off the task in the washing machine if you need to.

 Source: Stain Removal 101, Stain Solutions, Real Simple

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Written by Antoaneta Tsocheva

Antoaneta has been editing FastKlean news articles since 2001. Highly experienced, passionate and proactive professional. She is managing, motivating, training and developing, a successful and productive team and thrives in highly pressurised and challenging working environments. Antoaneta has strong attention to detail and ability to help others improve their performance.

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