Everything's pink! (Dye Bleed)


Old 07-07-05, 07:41 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Montreal Quebec Canada
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Red face Everything's pink! (Dye Bleed)

I washed my son' s white uniform T-shirts that are white cotton with red lettering. They turned all of my whites pink. Is there any way to get rid of this pink colouring on my clothes without removing the red lettering from his shirts?
Barb - not pretty in pink!
Old 07-07-05, 08:33 PM
Join Date: Aug 2000
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Dye Bleed

Dye bleed is often difficult and sometimes impossible to remove. There are commercial laundry products for removing dye bleed as well as dye removal products available in laundry product aisles. Once fabrics have been dried, dye tends to set by heat and next to impossible to remove. All dark colors should be tested for dye bleed before washing by rubbing a pH neutral detergent (one part detergent to three parts water) with a white cotton cloth on an unexposed area. Or, take the added precaution of washing new dark colored garments alone to check for dye bleed.

Since the enforcement of EPA laws fabric and garment manufacturers in this country tend not to rinse out excess dye in order to avoid rinsing hazardous waste down drains. Too, some dyes are simply unstable. Thus, many fabrics bleed dye when cleaned. Dark colors should always be washed and rinsed in cool water and on shorter washing and drying cycles with garments of like colors. Sorting before soaking is important to prevent dye transfer from one item to another or to keep a white or light item from picking up color that has bled into the water.

Remove the culprit garment from the laundry and place in a sink of cool water and soak overnight with all-fabric bleach (sodium perborate). This will give you a 50/50 chance of removing red dye from the garment. Red is considered a loose dye, and will bleed out of fabrics regardless of the age of the clothing.

Wash the remainder of the load in hot water, 2 cups ammonia, and heavy duty liquid laundry detergent. Check for stains. Repeat washing with ammonia and detergent. Then, wash in all-fabric bleach and detergent. Do not dry laundry until all dye bleed is removed.
Old 07-09-05, 10:26 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Once this problem is taken care of, you may want to buy Shout's Color Catchers- you put them in your washer, and they "catch" loose dyes. I've sent them with my son to college, and he says they work great! I've also used them at home with success..


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