Saturday, February 11, 2012

My Boys and Uniform Shirts

Today was school shirt day for the laundry.  I hate school shirt day.  No really.  In fact I hate it so much that I skipped it last week.  My boys (I have a feeling it's MOST boys) are hard on their uniform shirts.  It looks like they took the shirt and spread lunch on it, added some art supplies and then took the shirts outside and wiped down the black top with them.  And no, I'm not kidding or being overly dramatic.

To wash the shirts it's a several step process.  That may or may not work.

*spot treat really bad spots immediately with stain remover.

1.  First wet the shirt and then scrub it down with Fels-Naptha laundry soap.
2.  Get a tooth brush and more Fels-Naptha and scrub down the really bad stains.
3.  Wash the shirts on "stain wash" setting with Oxy Clean and detergent.

This all may or may not work.

4.  If stains persist, spot clean with bleach.
5.  Rewash.

This all may or may not work.

No, soaking with Oxy Clean will not work.  I've done it.  And I'm lazy so sometimes they've soaked for a few days.  Didn't work.

If all this doesn't work, throw shirt out.

So today being "uniform day" and me dreading it, I took a trip down the laundry aisle at the grocery and found Oxy Clean Max Force Gel Stick at the store.  I felt that it probably wouldn't work and that I was throwing $4.00 out the window but I was willing to try it.

I treated each shirt with it and washed on "stain wash" as usual.  It actually did pretty well.  The stains came out of all but two shirts.  I spot treated those with bleach and rewashed but those stains still didn't come out so I'm not going to blame the gel stick.  One shirt is still wearable but the other will have to go in the trash (this is why I only buy $5.00 uniform shirts from Old Navy or K-Mart).

The gel stick didn't really make the job any easier but it did work pretty well and made the job less messy.  BUT it doesn't appear that the stick will last very long.  Fels-Naptha lasts me YEARS before I need to buy another bar and although it may be a little more work, it works just as well.

I think I'll keep the gel stick for the really tough jobs but still continue to use the laundry soap as it's much more cost effective.

No one asked me to review either of these products.  If you're a boy mom and you have tough stains to get out, then you know I'm just sharing my findings as a PSA.

If you have any products that work well for you please share them here.  I'm willing to try anything.  And if it makes this task easier, then so much the better.

The pictures below don't do justice to the mess that these boys make of their shirts.


Aimee said...

I hear you! I had to throw away several of Fiver's shirts last year because they were too far gone. This year, in the new school, they changed uniforms and now the boys wear black polo shirts with gold lettering. I am in love with black polo shirts! :).

PEA said...

You're right, I think boys are much harder on their clothes than girls are. I remember throwing away a few shirts due to stains not coming out and asking my boys how in the heck they had gotten them so dirty! lol It's good to know about that gel stick, will have to remember it if I ever need to get a stain out in the future. xoxo

Bailey's Leaf said...

Greetings from the land of uniform shirts. My name is Amy. I have a daughter. Her stains aren't nearly as bad or nearly as often.

She's a tidy girl, she is.

However, there was a product that I bought. I think that it was Spray and Wash Dual. It came as a split bottle and you spray the stains. Girl, it took blueberry out of a pair of my khaki pants. I was amazed. I also use whatever super duper stain remover that Resolve has out there for laundry.

But here is a thought. K- knows where the stain remover is. If she is aware that she has a stain, she's to tell me or she can trot on downstairs and spray her stain. Yes, she's done this. More often, she tells me what is there. That way, being pretreated before it sits in the laundry for a few days gives me a better chance of uniform rescucitation.

I use peroxide for blood stains. Works like a charm.

I have a toothbrush as a scrubber and I'm not afraid to use it.

I use rubbing alcohol for any ink stain.

I forgot about this post:

I re-read it and realize that I forgot to list Dawn dishwashing detergent (original blue) for grease stains.

Good luck!