How To Get Chapstick Out Of Clothes

Chapstick stains happen when kids ( and adults ) forget to empty their pockets; the Chapstick goes through the washing machine and sometimes ends up in the dryer, resulting in a greasy ChapStick stain in the laundry. Tinted lip balm can leave not only an oily patch but a colored stain too. This post gives you different tips and tricks to get Chapstick out of clothes and the dryer with products you probably already have in your home.

child applying chapstick

What is Chapstick?

Chapstick is a branded name for lip balm. Lip balm protects lips from the elements, prevents dry lips, and hydrates and protects lips. Some varieties also include sunscreen to help protect the lips from sunburn.
The ingredients in lip balm vary with each brand, but the most popular ingredients are:

Why does chapstick stain clothes?

Most lip balms contain oils and waxes, and if these waxes and oils melt during a hot wash or in the tumble dryer, they sink into the fibers of your fabric, leaving oily patches. These may then be set in the dryer, making stain removal more difficult.

What happens to Chapstick in the washing machine?

This is where things get a bit more complicated. Lip balm is waxy and oily, so when it is in a semi-solid form, it becomes almost waterproof, so if you’re washing your clothes in a cold or warm water wash, you shouldn’t get much transfer to your garments. However, the problem starts as soon as you introduce heat. So once you start washing in the hottest water or put the item in the tumble drier, those semi-solid oils and waxes begin to melt and sink into the fibers of your clothes.

white laundry soaking to remove stains

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What you may need to get Chapstick out of clothes.

Before using any of the methods below, please test for colorfastness:

  1. Apply a small amount of solution on an inconspicuous area and leave until dry.
  2. If there is no change in color, continue following the instructions below.
  3. Always rinse the tested area with warm water and follow the garment’s wash care label.

How to remove Chapstick before it’s been in the dryer

If you’ve been lucky enough to catch the stray Chapstick before flinging your clothes in the dryer, you may not have such a considerable removal problem. Follow these simple steps to remove chapstick stains:

For clear lip balm, put the garment in the freezer

If you only have one or two damaged items, you could try putting them in the freezer. Once the lip balm freezes and hardens, you can scrape it off.

How to Get Chapstick Out of Clothes After Drying

Get Chapstick out of clothes using baking soda, stain remover, and vinegar.

  1. Firstly remove the oil. ChapStick is oil-based, so you should sprinkle baking soda onto the stain to soak up as much oil as possible.
  2. Scrub well at the stain. Grab an old toothbrush or scrubbing brush like this and scrub it. You will notice that the baking soda forms a ball.
  3. Remove the baking soda, then repeat the process
  4. Repeat until the baking soda does not ball up anymore. When the baking soda stops balling up, it should have soaked up most of the oil. There will still be a visible spot, but most of the oil should be gone.
  5. Grab a laundry stain remover like this one, vinegar, and water, or use whatever pretreatment you usually use. Spray it onto the stain and let it sit overnight.
  6. Wash as directed on the laundry label. Wash the garment as you usually would.
  7. Dry in the dryer as usual.

Get Chapstick out of clothes using Liquid Detergent

To remove Chapstick on clothes with dishwashing detergent, just put some on the stain and rub it away. If the stain still is stubborn, you can always use an oxygen-based stain remover like this one afterward.

Remove Chapstick from clothes using Stain Devils.

  1. Soak the stain with Stain Devil liquid and leave it to work.
  2. Afterward, dab up the stained area thoroughly with a damp cloth.
  3. Wash the garment in the usual way.

Get Chapstick out of clothes using an Iron and brown paper

To Get chapstick out of clothes using an iron, make sure the garment is on an ironing board then:

  1. Gently heat the iron to a low setting.
  2. Place some brown paper over the stain.
  3. Hold the iron over the stain until the oil soaks into the blotting paper.
  4. Wash as usual.

Additional Tips for Handling Melted Chapstick Stains

  1. Get to the stain as soon as possible before the stain has time to set
  2. Do not rub the stain before treatment, or you may transfer the oils and waxes to other parts of the garment.
  3. Do not put the stained garment in the tumble dryer. If you have washed a chapstick and it has transferred to your garment, do not put it in the dryer, or this will further set the stain and make it more difficult to remove.
a tube of chapstick

How to remove Chapstick residue from the washer and dryer drum

This post discusses how to remove melted wax crayons from the dryer, and the method is the same. Just follow this link to read the tips!

Handy Tips for Preventing ChapStick Mishaps

  • Keep your kids away from lip balm!
  • Check all pockets before putting anything in the laundry.


Does Chapstick permanently stain clothes?

If you catch the stain before the garment goes through the dryer, there is a good possibility that you will be able to remove the stain easily.

Will Shout get Chapstick out of clothes?

Shout is a laundry stain remover that will help get Chapstick out of clothes before they have been in the dryer when used as a stain pre-treatment.

Can Goo Gone remove Chapstick?

Goo Gone contains solvents and alcohol, so it might successfully remove Chapstick from clothes. However, test it on an inconspicuous area beforehand to prevent damage to the garment.

How do you get oil out of a shirt?

You first need to determine what type of stain you are dealing with. This post will tell you how to determine the type of stain and the secrets dry cleaners use to remove almost any stain!

What do you think the best stain remover for Chapstick is? As always, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line in the comments!

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