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Henna is a fun temporary tattoo with no commitments, but it becomes quite committed when a drop gets onto your carpet.
It may seem impossible at that point, but you can actually get henna stains off the carpet with care and home solutions. All you need is a bit of patience and a handful of common household items.
Read on to see the steps that you need to take to clean henna off the carpet.
How to Get Henna Stains Out of Carpet: Step By Step Guide
By this time, I’m sure you posted your despair on many chat forums and cleaning sites, but your search ends now. I will save your carpet (and your sanity) with this easy step-by-step method on how to get henna out of the carpet.
What you’re going to need:
- Laundry soap
- Warm milk (I can see those looks but just bear with me)
- A clean cloth
- Warm up the milk in the microwave or stove top on medium heat. The amount you’re warming will be according to how large the stain is. Make sure the amount of milk that you have will cover the stain.
- When the milk is warm enough to the touch, pour it over the stained area of the carpet. Allow to sit for 30 minutes. Your hands are itching to start scrubbing frantically, but hold the urge and do not scrub it during this time!
- Use a mixture of one part detergent and three parts of water to wash the milk away and henna stain. Gently rub the detergent into the area of the stain until the stain fades away. Dry with a clean cloth.
I always like to strike while the iron is hot when it comes to stains, but if the henna stain has already dried, you’d have to repeat these steps or do it over a couple of days.
Can My Steam Cleaner Help Me?
Yes, it can! After doing the above steps, your steam cleaner might be the finishing touch we need.
Henna stains are considered to be tannin stain because it contains a natural dye that stains a brownish or tan on a surface. Since a steam cleaner uses high-heat water vapor to disintegrate dirt, it can work for a henna stain.
If you end up leaving the stain for too long, steam cleaning can really get into carpet fibers and eliminate the stain and the residue. Your steam cleaner can also take away the henna odor that may be left behind.
But that’s only AFTER you’re done with the milk method I outlined above! If you skip it and only use your steamer, it will actually help the stain set in and remain there, well, forever.
Finish up removing the henna stain by doing the following:
- Fill up your water tank with warm water. Add a little vinegar for extra cleaning power.
- Attach the accessory that you usually use for carpets and make sure that it is secure.
- Move in a straight line by the area of the stain, so you get every part of it. Don’t hover too long on one spot as you may shrink the carpet fibers.
- Let the spot dry properly before walking over it again.
You can also read my previous article on how to steam clean carpets for more tips and tricks!
Bonus: Henna on My Clothes, Help!
Just when you thought your job was over, you find a henna stain on your favorite shirt.
You have to clean the stain as soon as you see it to avoid it setting in the shirt. Again, you’re going to need a few things you already have in the house:
- A toothbrush
- Cold water
- Paper towel/cloth
- White vinegar
- Laundry detergent
You’d need to do the following:
- Blot the stain using a clean cloth. Do not rub the stain in as the henna can spread and make it bigger. Press the cloth and allow it to absorb the access henna. Use a new section of the rag each time you blot the stain.
- After removing most of the henna, put some detergent onto the stain and use a toothbrush to scrub it into the fabric. Continue scrubbing until it fades.
- I know you want to scrub until your hands fall off, but you need to be careful as your shirt can become damaged.
- Once the stain fades, use the cold water to rinse away the detergent and henna.
Use cold water and not hot water! Hot water can set in the stain and make it difficult for you to remove.
If the henna remains, use a small amount of white vinegar or rubbing alcohol. Let the shirt soak it up for about an hour before washing it as normal.
If this method does not work, you can also use the milk method previously discussed for carpets. Just add the milk into a bowl and put the section of the shirt into the bowl, and let it soak for 30 minutes.
What’s in Henna That Gives the Color Anyway?
Henna (also known as mehendi paste) exhibits a pretty orange/red color on the skin when left for a while. It can also be used for your hair, but have you ever wondered what actually gives henna its ability to color?
The Henna plant gets its natural dye from its leaves, which is called Lawsone. These leaves are made into a fine powder that contains most Lawsone.
The henna is activated when you mix the powder with air and water. You can apply the paste on hair or skin for temporary tattoos and permanent hair color. Since the molecules of the dye bind pretty strongly to our hair and skin, they’re even stronger on the carpets.
No matter how careful you’ve been not to spill, one blob decided to go AWOL. Don’t panic! Scroll up for the easy guide on how to get rid of it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do henna stains come out?
If you treat the stains as soon as possible and use some warm milk and a steamer, then, yes, they do come out. This way, the dye does not have time to set in the area.
Henna lasts two weeks or so on your skin and starts fading afterward. To remove henna stains off your skin, you can use baking soda, lemon juice, and water for the best results.
What stains are impossible to remove from the carpet?
Some stains just win and become virtually impossible to get out eventually. These include cooking oil, pet stains, green tea, yellow mustard, nail polish, and colored drinks.
You would have success with some, but with others, not so much. You may have to bring in professional carpet dyers!