How to Get Blood Out of White Sheets?

The information in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice. [Read our full health disclaimer]

Updated on February 16, 2023

Blood stains are one of the most stubborn stains to remove from white and colored sheets, but unfortunately, they are part of our everyday life, whether we like it or not. 

Here’s the scientific reason why blood stains are so difficult to remove – after exposure to oxygen, the hemoglobin from the blood starts clotting, and sticks to the sheets. And when blood sticks to a sheet (or any material for that matter), removing it becomes quite a challenge. So, the longer the blood stays on the sheet, the harder it is to remove it. 

How to get blood off a white sheet?

To remove blood from sheets, it’s crucial to remove it as fast as you can. You can then use stain removers found at home like hydrogen peroxide, vinegar, or baking soda. Finally, wash blood stains from sheets like you normally would with liquid laundry detergent and air dry.

Keep reading because we’ll explain more in detail the best ways to remove both fresh and dried blood stains from bed sheets and from the mattress – so let’s get started.

Removing Fresh Blood From Sheets

white textile on brown wooden table

If you notice the blood on your sheets not too long after they’ve been stained, you can try the following methods which are proven to work. You can use these methods for getting fresh stains out of quilts, comforters, pillowcases, and other kinds of bedding.

Always Use Cold Water

Wash your blood-stained sheets using only cold water. Never use warm water for removing fresh blood stains from your bed sheets, as it’ll only stitch the blood into the sheets even more. So, the colder the water is, the easier you’ll be able to remove the blood stain – particularly if you combine it with an effective stain remover and quality laundry detergent.

Dab the Stain, Don’t Rub

The first step is to dab the stain.

Never rub blood stains from fabric so as not to spread it and push it even deeper into the sheet, instead gently dab up the blood left on the surface by using a sponge or clean cloth dipped in cold water.

After you finished dabbing it, put the sheet in a clean, cold water, and leave it there for a little while. If you think that you’re dealing with a more stubborn stain, soak the sheet for an hour (or longer).

Use an Effective Stain Remover

The next step is to use an effective blood stain remover. There are plenty of commercial products in stores and some everyday household things that you can use for removing stubborn stains. We recommend using hydrogen peroxide as it’s proven to remove blood from white sheets, but you can find plenty of other products that can be equally helpful, and you can see some of our recommendations further in the article.

low-angle photography of hanging clothes outside house during daytime

Machine Wash the Sheets

After the blood has been removed, you need to launder the stained sheets with the usual wash cycle, but remember to use only cold water. Don’t use the dryer; leave the sheet to air dry instead, because if the stain is still not totally removed, the drier can make it permanent.

Removing Dried Blood Stains Out of White Sheets

There are situations when you don’t notice the blood immediately after it has stained your sheet or maybe you don’t have time to deal with it right away. In any case, even though it is more challenging, removing it is not impossible. To get dried blood out of white sheets, follow these three simple steps:

  • First, you have to soak the sheet in cold water, and leave it there overnight, or at least for 12 hours, in order for the dried blood stain to loosen up.
  • Next, choose an effective blood stain remover, such as hydrogen peroxide, white vinegar, or bleach, and put it directly on the stain. By using a toothbrush, pat the stain remover into the sheet. Wait for ten minutes and dab the blood stain using a cold, wet cloth.
  • Use the washing machine to wash the sheet in a usual wash cycle with mild liquid detergent and cold water. Leave the sheet to air dry.

If the stain is still there, just repeat the steps and use a different stain remover that might prove more effective.

How To Get Period Blood Out Of White Sheets

When it comes to period blood stains on sheets, the first thing you should do is act fast. The longer the stain sits, the harder it will be to remove. Start by blotting up as much of the blood as possible with a clean cloth or paper towel. Don’t rub or scrub, as this can cause the stain to spread and set in further.

Next, fill a sink or bucket with cold water and add a few drops of mild detergent. Soak the stained area for at least 30 minutes before washing in your machine on a cold cycle with regular detergent. If there’s still a visible stain after washing, try soaking again in cold water and adding some white vinegar or baking soda to help lift out any remaining residue.

Finally, hang your sheets outside in direct sunlight for natural bleaching power that will help get rid of any stubborn stains.

Removing Blood Stains Out of A Mattress

Sometimes the blood stain can leak through your bed sheets and end up on your mattress, but don’t despair, there are steps you can take to remove the blood stain from your mattress as well.

white bed with throw pillows

Since mattresses are quite heavy and massive, it’s obvious that you cannot carry them out to the sink and soak them in. So, just grab the most effective stain remover that you can find in your house and follow the next steps:

  • Dab the blood stain using a sponge or a cloth dipped in cold water in order to remove as much of the blood as possible. The next thing to do is to use the stain remover. Remember to never apply the stain remover directly on the mattress, apply it on a sponge or a rag instead. This way you’ll prevent the stained area from becoming overly soaked, which can result in excess liquids leaking into the deepest layers of the mattress.
  • While you’re dabbing the stained area, pay attention to the sponge or the rag, and if you see that it’s absorbing the blood, use a clean sponge or a rag when you dab again in order to prevent a transfer of the blood back to the mattress.
  • If the stain is still on the mattress, repeat the previous steps as many times as necessary until you remove the whole stain. After you’ve removed the stain, dab using dry fabric to remove the leftover moisture.
  • Don’t cover the mattress immediately, but leave it to air dry completely.

How To Get Blood Off A White Sheet Of Different Types

white bedspread set

Accidents happen, and sometimes that means blood ends up on your sheets. Whether it’s from a bloody nose or a cut, getting the blood out of your sheets can be tricky. Different types of sheets require different methods to remove the stain.

Cotton

Cotton sheets are a popular choice for many households due to their softness and comfort. Unfortunately, they can be difficult to keep clean when it comes to tackling blood stains. The good news is that there is an easy solution. A mixture of baking soda and water can be used to remove the stain without damaging the fabric.

To use this method, simply mix together baking soda and water until it forms a paste. Apply this paste directly onto the stained area and let it sit for a few minutes before gently rubbing it off. Once you have removed as much of the stain as possible, wash off the remaining residue with cold water.

This will help ensure that your cotton sheets remain in pristine condition without any damage from hot water or harsh chemicals. With this simple trick, you can easily keep your cotton sheets looking like new!

Linen

Linen sheets are a luxurious and comfortable addition to any bedroom. However, they can be difficult to clean when stained with blood. Fortunately, white vinegar is an effective way to remove these stains from linen sheets.

white textile

To begin, rub some white vinegar onto the stain and gently massage it into the fabric. This will help break down the proteins in the blood and make it easier to remove. After that, rinse off the area with cold water. This will help prevent any further staining or discoloration of the fabric.

Once you’ve done this, you can then wash your linen sheets as normal in a washing machine or by hand. With regular cleaning and maintenance, your linen sheets should remain looking pristine for years to come!

Bamboo 

Bamboo sheets are a great choice for those looking for a luxurious and comfortable sleeping experience. They are soft, breathable, and hypoallergenic, making them ideal for people with sensitive skin. However, like any other fabric, bamboo sheets can get stained over time. To keep your bamboo sheets looking their best, it is important to clean them properly.

The first step in cleaning your bamboo sheets is to remove them from the mattress and soak them in cold water with a mild detergent overnight or for a few hours. This will help to loosen up any dirt or grime that has built up on the fabric.

After soaking, you can then wash the sheets in the washing machine using a gentle cycle and mild detergent. This usually gets most stains out of the sheets but if you still notice bloodstains, rub white vinegar on them and wash them off.

Once washed, hang your bamboo sheets outside to dry in direct sunlight as this helps to naturally disinfect the fabric and keep it looking its best.

Microfiber

Microfiber textile on brown background

Microfiber sheets are a great choice for bedding because they are soft, lightweight, and durable. However, it is important to know how to properly care for them in order to keep them looking their best. When washing microfiber sheets, it is important to use a mild detergent and avoid any bleaching agents.

This will help keep the fabric from fading or becoming damaged over time. Additionally, if you notice any blood stains on your microfiber sheets, white vinegar can be used to remove them. Simply mix equal parts of white vinegar and water and apply the solution directly onto the stain before laundering as usual.

The vinegar will help break down the proteins in the blood and make it easier to remove during the wash cycle. With proper care and maintenance, your microfiber sheets should remain soft and comfortable for years to come.

Effective Blood Stain Removers

Here are some stain removers that you can use to treat blood stains. You can use them on both dried and fresh blood stains on your sheets or mattress.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is a wonderful cleaning agent, particularly for light-colored and white cotton sheets. It’s an oxygen bleach, which makes it perfect for getting out blood stains without damaging the white cotton sheets. Additionally, you can use hydrogen peroxide not only for blood stains, but for all types of stains. Just remember not to use it on darker sheets.

blue and white clorox plastic bottle

How to use hydrogen peroxide? First, put the blood stain under cold running water, then put hydrogen peroxide on a cloth or a towel and dab the blood stain. It’ll start making bubbles. After the bubbles disappear, gently rub the sheet together in order to remove the blood from the threads. Put the stain under cold running water again, and check if the stain is still there. If it’s not, then you’ve done your job, but if it’s still there, repeat the process again.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is a great substitute for hydrogen peroxide. After rinsing the stained sheet in cold water, put lemon juice on the blood stain directly and gently rub the sheet. Then put the stain under cold running water, and if it’s necessary, repeat the procedure until you remove the stain completely.

Meat Tenderizer

You might be surprised, but a meat tenderizer can be an excellent blood stain remover.

Simply sprinkle the tenderizer over the blood stain, and add some water to make a paste. Use an old toothbrush to rub the mixture on the stained area and leave the paste to dry out. Wash the stained area under cold running water and you can repeat the procedure if it’s necessary.

Aspirin

We all know that aspirin is one of the best pain relievers, but you can also use it to remove blood stains. You only have to take two or three tablespoons of aspirin that was previously crushed, and then put it on the stain. Then add some water in order to make a paste and rub the stained area using a toothbrush.

flat lay photography of white prescription tablets in blue surface

When the mixture is all dried up, get rid of the residue and put the stain under cold running water. You can repeat this process as many times as needed, and when the stain is gone, wash the sheets in the washing machine with cold water and some laundry detergent.

Baking Soda and Cornstarch

Baking soda and cornstarch are two items that you usually have in your house. Make a mixture out of one tablespoon of cornstarch, one tablespoon of baking soda, and some cold water. Put the mixture on the stained area and gently rub using a clean towel or a toothbrush.

Leave the mixture approximately for half an hour, then remove the mixture from the sheet and put it under cold running water before you launder it. You can repeat the process in case the blood stain isn’t completely removed.

Dish Soap and Salt

A mixture of dish soap and salt can be a powerful blood stain remover. To make the mixture, you need two tablespoons of salt and one tablespoon of dish soap. Put it over the stained area and rub gently using an old toothbrush. Leave it to sit for approximately half an hour and then put the stained area under cold running water. You can repeat the procedure if it’s needed.

White Vinegar

yellow lemon fruit beside clear glass bottle

White vinegar is another natural remover of blood stains. You can put it directly on the blood stain and wait for a bit so it can dissolve it. If you’re dealing with a stubborn stain, you might need to soak it in the white vinegar for around half an hour and then put the sheet under running water.

You can repeat the procedure as many times as needed so that the stain can be completely removed. Afterward, wash the sheet using the regular wash cycle to get rid of the vinegar smell.

Enzyme Cleaner

If you failed to remove the blood stain with other stain removers, you can always lean on the enzyme cleaners. Organic enzyme cleaners are perfect blood stain removers due to the fact that they are specifically designed to attack organic material without harming the surrounding material that isn’t organic. When you use enzyme cleaners, always wear safety equipment in order to avoid eye and skin irritation.

Before you begin cleaning the blood stain with enzyme cleaners, test it on a hard-to-see area in order to make sure that it won’t do any harm to your sheets. Soak the blood stain into the enzyme cleaner for approximately half an hour, and put the treated area under cold running water. If the stain is still here, repeat the procedure until it’s gone, then wash the sheets in the washing machine.

Salt Water

The salt water procedure is particularly useful if you’re dealing with blood stains on delicate fabric, such as silk sheets. Simply make a mixture from one teaspoon of regular salt and one cup of cold water. Put the mixture over the stained area, and gently rub it in. Leave the mixture for approximately ten minutes and then put the sheet under cold running water. Repeat the procedure until the blood stain is gone.

FAQs

Final Words

Clean bedding is a very important aspect of sleeping hygiene. It’s advisable to wash your sheets each week, and if you stain them with blood, try to remove the stain as fast as possible before it dries out. Remember to always use cold water and don’t (under any circumstances) use a dryer until the stain is removed, and you won’t need to throw out your favorite sheets because they’ll be stain-free in no time.

Article Sources

  1. Noyed, D. (2023, January 31). How to Get Blood Out of Sheets. https://www.sleepfoundation.org/bedding-information/how-to-get-blood-out-of-sheets
  2. Airhart, E. (2023, January 20). How to Clean Blood Stains. https://www.nytimes.com/wirecutter/guides/how-to-clean-blood-stains/
  3. Ariffin, F. (2018) White vinegar: a natural home bleaching agent for cotton fabric. https://ir.uitm.edu.my/id/eprint/26319/
  4. Garrity, A. (2022, May 10). How to Get Blood Out of Sheets the Right Way. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/cleaning/a30999384/how-to-get-blood-out-of-sheets/
  5. Sengwe, S. (2021, July 28). This Is the Best Way to Get Blood Out of Sheets (We Asked the Experts). https://www.purewow.com/home/get-blood-out-of-sheets
Bree Taylor - Lead Editor

Lead Editor

Bree is an interior designer with a passion for helping people improve their sleep quality.

She specializes in creating comfortable and functional bedroom spaces that promote a good night’s rest.

When she’s not testing mattresses or helping people get the best rest possible, Bree loves to travel and explore new cultures.

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