Image Name How to Remove Massage Oil Stains from Sheets and Linens

How to Remove Massage Oil Stains from Sheets and Linens

“I don’t need a massage,” said no one ever. There’s nothing like having someone literally take the pressure away from your sore muscles, be it your spouse, your roommate, or a massage therapist. A massage isn’t just a great method of unwinding, but it also helps relieve several forms of muscle and joint pain, so having a massage from time to time is actually recommended.

But what happens when that massage oil is smeared all over the sheets in stains that seem impossible to remove? Greasy stains have always been the nightmare of every person who was ever in charge of doing laundry, and for a good reason. So, is there an efficient way to actually remove massage oil stains from sheets?

Tips for Avoiding Oil Stains

Naturally, the best way to avoid having to go through the trouble of removing massage oil stains from clothes or sheets or even from towels is not to stain them in the first place. That can be difficult, especially if you are a therapist that performs massages on a regular basis. Even so, here are a few tips that might prevent any nasty stains from appearing:

Body oil stains,odors and stains,other dirt on white bedding sheet,unclean bed sheet

  • Almond oil is a real bummer when it comes to staining fabrics. If at all possible, avoid products that have a high content of almond oil.
  • While cotton sheets are super comfortable, they are also very hard to clean once an oil stain has landed on its surface. Instead, you can use sheets made from Percale fabric. Look for products that are labeled as “stain-resistant”. You want a fabric is a high thread count because it ensures a tighter weave, which makes it more difficult for the oil to penetrate the fabric.
  • When you are massaging someone else, drip the oil into your hands and rub them together instead of smearing oil over the other person’s body. This way, you are less likely to have drops of oil getting all over the sheets. It’s better if you apply less product at a time and then add more rather than adding too much at once and making a mess of your sheets.
  • Did you know there is such a thing as a disposable sheet? In fact, if you’ve ever been to a private clinic for a consultation and had to lie on the table for an examination, the sheets that were underneath you were most likely disposable. The nurse threw them away and placed brand new ones for the next patient. That means that if you are a massage therapist, you might want to invest in disposable sheets for your table as well. It’s way more sanitary and saves you time with having to clean sheets.

Interior of massage room in a spa salon

  • You can always use white sheets only because you can bleach them in order to remove stains faster. However, if you add bleach on top of colored fabrics, you risk discoloration, in which case you will need to turn to other methods for removing the oil stains on your sheets.
  • The color of the sheets is important because darker colors will make the oil stain more visible compared to pale ones. In fact, off-white and beige sheets are even more recommended for massages because clear white can easily get stained when in contact with oil.
  • When you get massage oil all over your sheets, wash them as fast as possible, and it the hottest water possible. Not only does hot water act as fabric disinfectant, but it can also remove the oil from the fabric in a way more efficient manner. If you use cold water, you’re actually fixing the oil on the fibers, which makes it less likely for you to actually remove the stain.
  • Liquid soap is a much better option when you have to remove stubborn oil stains from fabrics. That’s because liquid detergent will dissolve faster and more uniform compared to powder detergent.

What You’ll Need

Baby powder, stain remover and a bottle spray on top of a wooden table.

The process of removing massage oil stains from bed sheets isn’t complicated, but it can take a long time considering that you have to pre-treat the stains with baby powder and stain remover before actually washing them. In order to proceed with the stain removal, you will need the following:

Step-by-Step Instructions:

Step #1: The baby powder

Baby powder sprinkled to the stained part of the sheet.

  • First, you’ll have to sprinkle the baby powder on top of each stain, making sure that they are completely covered.

Oil stain part of the sheet fully covered of baby powder.

  • Leave the powder on the stains for about 20 minutes, as this gives the product a chance to soak up the oils.

Baby powder removed from the sheet using hand.

  • Using your hand or a clean brush, remove the powder from the sheets and throw it away.

Step #2: The petroleum-based stain remover

Spraying petroleum-based stain remover to the stain covered of baby power.

  • Grab your stain remover and spray/squeeze/pour it all over the oil stains. Counterintuitively, products that are made with oils are actually very efficient in removing greasy stains.

Fingers rub gently the sprayed stain remover to the stained sheet.

  • Using your clean fingers, gently rub the product into the stain, in order to help it penetrate the fabric faster.
  • Leave the stain remover on the stains for about 15 minutes, allowing the fabric to absorb it

Step #3: The washing machine

Sheet put on the washing machine for final clean up of the stain.

  • The next step implies actually washing the sheets. To do so, make sure that you wash them in really hot water.
  • Opt for a liquid detergent that you know is efficient in removing grease stains.
  • Add ammonia to the washing cycle, to give it a chance to penetrate the fibers of the fabric and remove the stains.
  • Before throwing the sheets into the dryer, make sure that you check to see if the stains are gone. If they aren’t, repeat all of the steps above until any oil stains have been completely removed.


Freshly washed and dried up sheet, Stain fully removed.

The purpose of massage oil is to enjoy its soothing effects without having to worry about stains. Getting the oil stains out of your sheet can be a real nuisance if they don’t come out during the first series of steps (as mentioned above, you will have to repeat steps 1, 2 and 3 to completely remove the stains before putting the sheets into the dryer).

However, if you massage people for a living and discover that you’re wasting too much time in getting massage oil stains out of fabrics, you might want to consider turning to disposable sheets or buying white sheets that you can easily bleach in order to remove stains.

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