If a tipsy guest spills red wine on the carpet, don't panic.
How do you get rid of red wine stains on your carpet? It's a commonly held belief that pouring white wine on top of red wine is the best way to clean it up. Maybe this is an urban myth created by a drunken host, but besides being a complete waste of perfectly good wine, it doesn't work. There are far easier, and less expensive, ways to deal with red wine stains, and most of these methods use products already in your cupboard.
Wick It Up
The first step (after banishing the clumsy guest outside) is to get up as much of the offending drink from the carpet as you can. If you start with the cleaning part too soon you will just dilute the stain and cause it to spread. Use a kitchen towel, or any cloth that you have on hand, and begin to blot the stain. Make sure the cloth is clean, as you don't want more stains added to the mix. If you have any disposable diapers in the house, they're ideal for this. Work from the outside in, using a blotting action.
Dab, Don't Rub
When you've got up as much of the stain out of the carpet as you can, pour some club soda or sparkling water over the remaining stain. In rather cunning style, the fizz from the drink brings more of the stain to the surface of the carpet. Now blot and dab at the stain again, to get more of the wine out of the carpet.
Still Got a Stain?
Tackle the remainder with a mild detergent -- work on small areas at a time, still using the dabbing action, and work from the outside in. Rubbing at the stain at this stage, however tempting, will not only spread it, it will also damage the fabric. Now dab again with clean water to rinse the detergent, and finish by blotting with a dry cloth. If you're still left with a whiff of wine in the area the next day, sprinkle some baking soda on the carpet and leave it for 20 minutes before vacuuming it up.
The next time some wine hits the floor, you'll be prepared with your quick cleaning tricks in hand, leaving you free to party with the white wine you've saved!
Wine and Cheese, Please!
Ready to host a wine and cheese party? Get great ideas in our How to Host a Wine and Cheese Party
Recipes with Red Wine
Since this is Tablespoon, we'll leave you with a few great recipes that feature red wine (because you know how to get it out of the carpet now!):
Do you have more hints for removing red wine stains?