Removing A Fresh Coffee Stain From Your Upholstery

When you're rushing around to get everything done in the morning, it's all too easy to spill your coffee. Before you know it, there's a black or brown stain in your nicely upholstered chair. Don't panic. Removing a coffee stain is not as hard as you might imagine, especially when the stain is fresh. Just follow these steps.

Blot it up.

Do not rub the stain at all. Doing so will only make it larger and may also "grind" the coffee stain deeper into the individual fibers of the upholstery, making it harder to remove. Grab a stack of paper towels or a towel you don't mind ruining, and press straight down on the stain. Lean all of your weight into it. Repeat this blotting process until you are no longer drawing any more liquid out and onto the towel.

Clean it up with dish soap.

The reason why many stain removers won't work well on coffee is that they don't break up oils well. Coffee may not look oily, but when you brew a cup, some oils are extracted from the beans. It's these oils that are responsible for most of coffee's dark color, so breaking them up is essential for removing the stain. Dish soap, especially the concentrated kind, is designed specifically to break up grease and oil. Apply a generous amount to a somewhat rough-textured sponge, and moisten the sponge with water. Then, start rubbing the coffee stain with this sponge, using small, circular motions. Press down while you're rubbing so that you're making contact with any coffee that has absorbed more deeply into the upholstery. If the stain is on the large side, start on the outside and work your way in to avoid spreading the stain.

Rinse with water.

Once you've scrubbed the whole stain, rinse the sponge out and apply a generous amount of clear water to the previously stained area. You want it to be sufficiently damp, but not soaking wet. Once the area is wet, use a clean towel or stack of paper towels to blot up the moisture.

Finish with baking soda.

This step is only really necessary if there was cream, milk, or another dairy product in the coffee that you spilled. Sprinkle baking soda over the previously stained area. It will work to neutralize any potentially stinky odors these dairy products might leave behind. Once it's completely dry (after a day or two) vacuum it up with your vacuum's wand attachment.

With any luck, this process should leave your upholstery clean and stain-free.