Cleaning a Stain From a Cotton Rug
Natural fibres like cotton can be tricky to clean, especially if you've never cleaned them before or never had to deal with a stain. The natural fibres in cotton mean it can cling to soapy residues if they are left behind, and can then cause discolouration in the base of the rug.
Here are some tips for removing a stain from a cotton rug:
1. Hoover it
Regularly hoovering your rug will help protect it from debris build up and accidental soiling anyway, so you should always hoover it alongside your other carpeted areas when possible.
If you have a stain, only hoover after you have blotted the stain (if the stain is still new or wet) otherwise you are at risk of spreading the stain around and making the job much bigger for yourself. Hoovering it when you are sure the liquid or food droplets are gone means you’ll pick up anything on top of the stain likely to be worked in during the cleaning process.
2. Blot it
Never scrub at the stain as you will more than likely damage the fibres and ruin your rug. Dab at the stain gently working from the outside in and spray a little water on if you feel it will help. Don’t be tempted to over-wet the area as it may lead the base to go mouldy and rot.
Remember to always use a clean tissue or towel for blotting to ensure you aren't actually working in any more stains.
3. Use clear washing up liquid
If you make a little of your own cleaning solution to try and lift the stain, you’ll want to make sure it is clear rather than coloured. This is extremely important if you want to ensure no detergent colouring is transferred onto your rug (especially if it is light in colour!).
Use about a tablespoon of washing up liquid and one cold cup of water mixed to make a good solution to start cleaning with.
Remember to dab and work with the fibres rather than scrub.
4. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty
It is worth using a carpet friendly steam cleaner first to try gently easing any dirt out.
If the stain won’t give up easily, consider hand washing the entire rug. Of course you have the option of hiring someone to clean it professionally but, that can be costly, at least a lot more costly than doing it yourself (if it’s a priceless family heirloom it’s probably worth the investment).
To wash a cotton rug simply hang it over your washing line or similar and spray it with a mixture of laundry washing liquid and water, you could also use carpet specific shampoo’s.
The crucial part of this process is not the washing but the rinsing. You must make sure all the shampoo is removed from the base to avoid staining and oil build up.
Once the rug is rinsed properly simply let it dry naturally taking care not to forget about it as the sun may cause the fibres to fade.
Disclaimer: Whilst we hope that these tips will clean your rug - they may not always work. If you do not want to take the risk it would be wise to get your rug cleaned professionally.