It’s frustrating to pull a box of clothes out from storage and find a white fuzzy growth all over your favorite black T-shirt. Not only does the mold look unpleasant, it can make your clothes smell musty and may even eat into the fabric. Mold grows in damp, dark environments, so if your clothes are exposed to these conditions, they can be a mold magnet. There’s no need to toss out dark clothing with fuzzy white mold growth. You definitely don’t want to put the garment on your body, but with some diligence and elbow grease, you can get rid of the mold and restore the clothing in no time.
Take the garment outdoors and brush over it with a dry scrub brush to remove as much mold as possible. Don’t do this in this house, as brushing the garment will release mold spores.
Put the clothing in a bucket. Pour white vinegar into the bucket so the garment is completely covered. Let it soak for 30 minutes in the vinegar.
Remove the clothing from the bucket. Wash it in the washing machine using the hottest water safe for the fabric and heavy-duty laundry detergent. Lay the garment outside in the sun to air dry completely. Do not place it in the dryer. The heat from the dryer may set in any stains from the mold. If you can’t dry the item outside, air-dry it indoors.
Inspect the garment after it is dry. If the mold spots remain, pour lemon juice over the spot, then sprinkle table salt on top. Blot with a rag so the lemon juice soaks into the fabric. Wait 30 minutes before washing the garment with the hottest water safe for the fabric and heavy-duty laundry detergent. Let the clothing air-dry completely.
- For stubborn white mold stains, soak the clothing in a solution of oxygen bleach and hot water for 30 minutes before laundering the garment again. Refer to the label on the box of oxygen bleach for specific mixing instructions.
- Clothing that is not washable should be taken to a dry cleaner for cleaning and to remove the white mold.
- Lemon juice may bleach some dark-colored fabrics. Test on an inconspicuous spot of the garment prior to applying it to a more noticeable area.
Kimbry Parker has been writing since 1998 and has published content on various websites. Parker has experience writing on a variety of topics such as health, parenting, home improvement and decorating. She is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Arts in organizational communication.