No matter how careful we try to be, grease stains seem to always be able to find their way onto our clothes. I’ve retired countless outfits to the back of my closet when a stubborn blotch refused to budge — but I recently stumbled upon an easy solution to finally get rid of those pesky set-in stains.
My usual DIY stain remover is simply dabbing a little dish soap on the spot as soon as it hits my clothing and rinsing it away. But, of course, there are times when you can’t stop everything to treat a stain immediately. That was exactly what happened when I got some oil on my beloved pale purple hoodie while stirring a pot of refried beans. I didn’t actually notice it at first and by the time I did, I kept getting too distracted to think about scrubbing it until a few days later.
But instead of adding the hoodie to my pile of unworn items in the closet, I used it as an opportunity to test out a trick I saw on PureWow. According to the website, all you need is some cornstarch and water to zap away any grease stains, including old ones that have set into the fabric.
They recommend creating a one-to-one mixture of cornstarch and water — of however much you think you’ll need to cover the stain — until it forms a paste. Then apply that to the grease spot and let it sit overnight and just brush it away in the morning. That’s right, no need to scrub or put anything through a round in your washer.
I was obviously skeptical that something so easy would actually work, but was happily surprised by the complete lack of grease on my hoodie after trying it! Apparently, this can also help with sweat stains, which I will definitely be testing out as well.
I’m no laundry expert, but I am guessing the cornstarch paste works by soaking up the lingering grease as it dries on the fabric. That, or it’s magic. Either way, you should definitely give it a try!
This article originally appeared on our sister site, First for Women.