How to Get Makeup Out of a White Dress

white back wedding dress bride image by Paul Retherford from

Makeup on a white dress is a frightening sight. Whether it’s an oil-based makeup such as lipstick or mascara or powdered makeup like blush or eye shadow, you likely want it off of your white dress immediately. Removing makeup from a white dress is not as tricky as it may look. Using the proper products and techniques will have the makeup gone in no time.

Removing Oil-based Makeup

Sprinkle the makeup stain generously with baking soda. Dab the baking soda gently with a dry rag. Allow the baking soda to sit on the dress for at least 10 minutes.

Shake the dress briskly to remove the powder. The baking soda is absorbent so it will soak up at least some of the makeup from the dress.

Place a few drops of clear shampoo directly onto the makeup stain. Add a few drops of water to the stain.

Use a white rag to gently work the shampoo and water into the stain. Rub gently in a circular motion until the stain has lifted.

Rinse the stained area with plain water. Use a white rag moistened with water to remove the soap residue and any remaining makeup.

Repeat this process, if necessary, until all of the makeup is gone.

Spray hairspray onto the stained area of the dress if the makeup remains. Saturate the area with hairspray and allow it to sit for several minutes. Wipe the dress with a damp rag and clear dish soap. Rinse the dress with a rag and plain water. Allow it to air dry.

Removing Powdered Makeup

Rub the makeup stain gently with a makeup sponge. Rub in only one direction and do not apply much force. Turn the makeup sponge over or switch to a new one once it becomes soiled. Continue doing this until no more makeup transfers to the sponge.

Moisten a white rag with white vinegar. Dab the stain gently with the rag, switching frequently to use clean parts of the rag.

Rinse the dress with a rag and water. Allow the dress to air dry.

Use shaving cream if the makeup stain persists. Use plain, white foaming shaving cream rather than a colored gel.

Apply a small amount of shaving cream to a white rag. Dab the stain with the rag.

Dampen a white rag with club soda to rinse the dress. Wipe the shaving cream and any remaining makeup residue from the dress using the rag and club soda.