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How To Remove Sticker Residue From Clothes

How to Remove Sticker Residue From Clothes

Nothing is worse than taking your laundry out of the dryer and realizing there is still a sticker stuck to your clothing. Through the article, you’ll learn a few different ways of how to remove sticker residue from clothes.

Unfortunately, price tags, kids’ stickers for kids, and name tags are often forgotten and put through the wash. After a sticker has been on your shirt for a while, it can leave a sticky residue. After it has been through the dryer, the adhesive can seem impossible to get off.

While a popular stain remover may do the trick, other, more natural remedies to sticker goo may work just as well.


Removing Sticker Residue with Masking Tape or Ordinary Soap

Materials Needed: Masking tape, soap, t-shirts affected by sticker residue.


Step 1: Place the masking tape over the top of the sticker.

This is the easiest and fastest way to remove a stubborn sticker and even some sticker glue. It can work for any shape or size sticker. It just uses a few pieces of tape.

Ensure that the tape covers the sticker adhesive and then quickly pull the tape off. This will remove parts of the sticker residue as you continue to repeat. If this doesn’t work, simply move on to the next method.

Using warm water and ordinary soap, you can also remove the adhesive from stickers. Soap removes dirt and grease from objects and may also work on mild sticker glue residue.

Soak the shirt in warm water and scrub it with soap. You can also use a soft brush, such as an old toothbrush or nail brush, to work the soap into the fabric.


Easy Removal Using the Hot Iron Method

Materials Needed: An iron, paper towels, butter knife, and your favorite shirt.


Step 1: Place the paper towel over the glue residue.

Put your shirt stained with glue residue on an ironing board or flat surface and cover the affected area with two layers of paper towels.

Ensure that you avoid any appliqués or words on the shirt, as the iron can melt and damage them.


Step 2: Place your hot iron on top of the paper towel on an ironing board or flat surface.

Place the iron on top of the paper towel, avoiding any part of the shirt that can melt. The sticky residue will heat up slowly, returning it to a liquid form and separating it from the fabric of your shirt.

You can also try heating the sticker with a hairdryer. This method will work slower than an iron, but it serves the same purpose. It also may be safer on clothing that cannot be ironed.

Don’t forget to check the tags before using heat on your clothes.


Step 3: Remove the glue residue with your fingernail or a butter knife.

Using your fingernail, scratch and scrub at the sticky residue until it comes off the fabric. You can also use a butter knife or credit card if you do not want to use your fingernails.

You may need to heat the sticker residue multiple times before it comes completely off.

After removing the sticker, rinse the shirt and wash it with laundry detergent in the washing machine.

Make sure that the stain is completely gone before you dry your shirt. The heat from the dryer can cause the residue to become an even more difficult stain to remove if you don’t get it all.


Remove Sticker Residue with Acetone/Nail Polish Remover

Materials Needed: Nail polish remover, a cotton ball, and your shirt

Removing glue residue from stickers with acetone or nail polish remover is simple, but it can present some issues for your fabric and material. Make sure you read the tags on the inside seam of your clothes for any cleaning instructions.

Do not use nail polish remover on acetate fabrics. The acetone in nail polish remover will melt the acetate fabric, and your favorite shirt could get ruined.


Step 1: Apply a small amount of acetone to the area to completely remove the sticker residue.

This method can damage your clothing depending on the material. Make sure you test a small section of the fabric if unsure how the acetone will affect your clothing.

Dab the affected area with a cotton ball and gently scrape to remove sticker adhesive from your clothing.


Removing Sticker Glue with Peanut Butter

Materials Needed: Peanut Butter, toothbrush

Apply a generous amount of creamy (not crunchy) peanut butter to the affected area of your shirt. Let it sit for a few moments.

After the peanut butter has been soaking into the fibers of your shirt’s fabric, take a toothbrush and scrub the stained area.

The oils from the peanut butter should help remove the goo from your shirt. However, your shirt will be messy and oily after scrubbing the area.

Try to remove some peanut butter and goo with a napkin or other disposable cloth and throw it away.

After removing the adhesive goo and the peanut butter, wash your shirt thoroughly and ensure that the stain is gone before drying.


Removing Stickers with Microfiber Cloth

Materials Needed: Microfiber cloth, dish soap, and your t-shirt.


Step 1: Apply a small amount of liquid dish soap to the shirt.

Apply dish soap directly to the affected area of the clothing. Let it soak into the fabric before scrubbing.


Step 2: Scrub the area of the fabric with a microfiber cloth.

Use the cloth to rub the goo stain on the fabric. Microfiber cloths work well for scrubbing because they have more split fibers than other fabrics.

This creates more friction between the two materials, removing sticker residue even more quickly than just using a rag or other kind of cloth.

After scrubbing the sticky area, rinse the fabric and run it through the washing machine to remove sticky residue.


Get Sticker Residue off with Rubbing Alcohol

Materials Needed: Rubbing alcohol, cotton ball or rag, and your affected clothes.


Step 1: Dab the alcohol onto the goo stain.

Apply the alcohol with a cloth to remove sticker residue from your shirt.

Ensure the sticker glue is completely covered in the rubbing alcohol before moving on to the scrubbing step.


Step 2: Scrub to remove sticker residue from the clothing in seconds.

Continue applying the rubbing alcohol and gently scrubbing your clothing until the adhesive stain is completely removed.

You may have to repeat this process more than one time.

When the sticker has been removed, rinse the alcohol out of the clothing and wash it thoroughly with laundry detergent in the washing machine.


Removing Sticker Residue with Hot Vinegar

Materials Needed: Warm white vinegar, cloth or soft brush.


Step 1: Soak the sticky area in warm white vinegar and rub with a cloth or brush.

Heat up some undiluted distilled white vinegar in a microwave-safe dish and apply it gently to the sticky area with a cloth.

The area should be covered and left to soak until the adhesive is fully saturated in vinegar. 

Use a brush or a cloth to lightly rub the sticky area, now soaked in hot vinegar, until the goo comes off the shirt.

The sticky area should come up easily, and vinegar is a natural solution that will not harm your clothes.

You can also use a butter knife, credit card, or old toothbrush to help scrape the sticker and sticky tape residue off the clothing.

After removing the sticker residue from clothing, try washing the area in warm water in the washing machine. The adhesive residue should already be gone, but a small stain may remain from the goo.

Washing the area should help you see if you need to repeat the hot vinegar method. If any residue remains, repeat the process.

Ensure that you do not put the shirt in the dryer until you are sure that the sticker, residue, and stain are completely removed.


How To Get Sticker Residue Off Clothes FAQ


How do you remove stubborn sticker residue?

If all of the above sticker removal methods do not work, you can try a more potent solvent or stain remover, such as Goo Gone, Carbona Stain Devils, or rubbing alcohol. Make sure you test a small area of your clothes first to ensure that the stain remover does not harm your shirt.

You can also apply dish soap to the remaining stickiness and scrub it with an old toothbrush before running it through the washing machine.

Tough chemicals can usually remove sticker residue more quickly than the alternative and more natural options. However, these harsh chemicals may not be safe for your clothing.


How do you get sticker residue off clothes with vinegar?

Use warm white vinegar and soak the glue stain for a few minutes before treating the clothing further.

After soaking the clothing in vinegar, rub the sticky area with liquid laundry detergent. You can scrape the glue stain with an old credit card to help remove the adhesive from the fabric.

Then, wash the fabric in warm water in the washing machine and lay it out to air dry.

Do not put your clothing in the dryer again until you are certain the glue stain is completely removed, and follow the clothing tag instructions when it comes to drying time.


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