How To Remove Squid Ink Stain From Washable Fabrics

February 16, 2023

Squid ink is a delicious and exotic ingredient in many dishes, but it can also leave a stubborn stain on your clothes. Whether you're a fan of squid ink pasta or accidentally spilled some ink on your clothes, you don't have to let a squid ink stain ruin your favorite fabric. In this article, we will provide you with simple and effective methods for removing squid ink stains from washable fabrics. With a few common household items and a bit of patience, you can easily banish those unsightly squid ink stains and restore your clothes to their former glory. So, if you're ready to learn how to remove squid ink stains from washable fabrics, keep reading!




These stains may appear as a black or dark blue mark on the fabric, and could be slightly sticky or dry. They may also have a fishy or ink-like smell.


Cold (65° to 75°F)


Cold water helps to prevent the dye from setting and spreading.

The Science Behind Squid Ink Stains

Squid ink contains a pigment called melanin, which is what gives it its black color. When squid ink comes into contact with fabric, the melanin in the ink can bind to the fibers of the fabric, causing it to stain. Additionally, the ink contains a protein called chitin, which can make the stain more difficult to remove. This is why squid ink can be notoriously difficult to get out of clothes.

What You'll Need To Get Rid Of Squid Ink Stains

  • Clean, white cloth or paper towel
  • Cold water
  • Mild liquid detergent
  • White vinegar
  • Enzyme-based stain remover
  • Bleach (only for white fabrics)

Step By Step Process To Remove Squid Ink Stains

  1. Blot the stain with a clean, white cloth or paper towel to remove any excess ink.
  2. Flush the stain with cold water from the back of the fabric to push the ink out of the fibers.
  3. Apply a small amount of mild liquid detergent to the stain and gently rub it in. Let it sit for a few minutes.
  4. Rinse the stain thoroughly with cold water.
  5. If the stain persists, apply a solution of equal parts white vinegar and cold water to the stain and let it sit for 5-10 minutes.
  6. Rinse the stain thoroughly with cold water.
  7. If the stain still persists, apply an enzyme-based stain remover directly to the stain and let it sit for 15-20 minutes.
  8. Wash the garment in the washing machine with cold water and a mild detergent. Avoid using hot water as it can set the stain.
  9. Check the stain after washing. If it's still visible, repeat the above steps until the stain is removed.
  10. If the garment is white and made of cotton, you may use bleach to remove the stain. However, do not use bleach on colored fabrics as it can cause discoloration.
Note that these steps are a general guide, and the effectiveness of the stain removal may depend on the type of fabric and the severity of the stain. Always check the care label on the garment before attempting to remove a stain, and if in doubt, consider seeking professional cleaning assistance.

In Brief

Squid ink stains clothes due to the melanin pigment and chitin protein it contains. To remove squid ink stains from washable fabrics, blot the stain and rinse it with cold water, apply mild detergent, white vinegar solution, or enzyme-based stain remover as necessary. Wash the garment with cold water and mild detergent, avoiding hot water, and repeat until the stain is gone. Bleach may be used for white cotton fabrics, but avoid it for colored fabrics.

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