ShopSmart Shares Everyday Secrets for Dealing with Devastating Messes

Experts share favorite household products and tips to combat tough stains

Mar 25, 2014, 06:00 ET from ShopSmart

YONKERS, N.Y., March 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dealing with difficult-to-remove stains can be stressful; yet many of the tools needed to tackle a mess may be lying around the home already. The April 2014 issue of ShopSmart, from Consumer Reports, identifies common household products that may help tackle even the toughest stains.  

Before turning to costly professional cleaning services, ShopSmart recommends trying out a few of the simple home product cleaning solutions used by pros, such as using Bengay which can treat chewing gum mishaps and rubbing alcohol for ball-point ink stains.

Everyday Stain Fighting Essentials

Below are a few of the everyday items ShopSmart recommends shoppers keep on hand for almost any stain emergency. More must-have household products for a top-notch cleaning tool kit can be found in the April 2014 issue of ShopSmart.  

  • Clean, white towels or napkins. A cleaning essential for everything from red wine to chocolate milk spills. The white color also allows users to see the stain they're lifting, and whether or not they're removing color from the fabric.
  • Clean sponges. Great for blotting up pet accidents and chocolate messes with the help of a little tap water.
  • Enzyme-based pet-stain remover. Test first in an inconspicuous spot and don't overdo it with this cleaner. Enzyme products attack wool fiber proteins, so take care when using this solution on wool.
  • Colorless enzyme-based laundry detergent. The secret to getting up gooey stuff. If a stain remains, blot with a solution of 1 teaspoon colorless enzyme detergent (such as Tide Free & Gentle) and a cup of warm water.
  • Mild liquid soap. A mild soap such as Ivory can help close the deal on hard-to-get-out stains like chewing gum and greasy gravy.
  • Fresh hydrogen peroxide. A lesser-known solution for red and white wine stains. Be sure to check the expiration date – once the bottle is open it quickly loses strength.

For more information about ShopSmart's do-it-yourself stain solutions, as well as a list of common household stains and their dos and don'ts, pick up the April 2014 issue on newsstands now.

About Consumer Reports:
Consumer Reports is the world's largest independent product-testing organization. Using its more than 50 labs, auto test center, and survey research center, the nonprofit rates thousands of products and services annually. Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has over 8 million subscribers to its magazine, website, and other publications. Its advocacy division, Consumers Union, works for health reform, food and product safety, financial reform, and other consumer issues in Washington, D.C., the states, and in the marketplace.

About ShopSmart magazine:
Launched in Fall 2006 by Consumer Reports, ShopSmart draws upon the publication's celebrated tradition of accepting no advertisements and providing unbiased product reviews. ShopSmart features product reviews, shopping tips on how to get the most out of products and "best of the best" lists. It's ideal for busy shoppers who place a premium on time. ShopSmart has a newsstand price of $4.99 and is available nationwide at major retailers including Barnes & Noble, Walmart, Kroger, Safeway and Publix. ShopSmart is available by subscription at

ShopSmart is available 10 times a year. Subscribe at

SOURCE ShopSmart