Bamboo Sheets vs Body Oil & Lotion
Body Oil Stains Suck (Literally) – Quick Read
One of the most commonly discussed benefits of Bamboo Bedding is the material’s ability to wick moisture. Bamboo is in fact so good at this, that body oil and lotion can become problematic. Especially on darker sheets.
While lotion and body oil do not create a stain-effect on white bamboo sheets, the issue does become more problematic on darker colors.
The solution? Start with a HOT (not VERY HOT) cycle, favorite choice of detergent, but add a half cup of Zote Laundry Flakes to the load. Do a HEAVY load to ensure longer soaking. If that doesn’t entirely pull the oil markings, you can soak the bedding in a mixture of vinegar to water at a ratio of 1 to 3 for a couple of hours. Then wash on MEDIUM as usual. If that doesn’t work, we recommend this last approach for HE washers only (more instruction on other washers below). Add bleach to the load. But not a lot! About 1/4 the amount you’d add if washing whites.
Unwicking Body Oil and Lotion Out of Your Bamboo Bed Sheets
You know those Viagra commercials that tell men that if they have an erection over 4 hours they should go seek help? Yeah, this is kind of like that…
Bamboo is so effective at wicking moisture, that it sometimes gets a bit carried away. Besides moisture, the bedding has no issue pulling body oil or recently-applied lotion right off a person. For those that own white bamboo bedding, this effect likely goes unnoticed. But, for those who own darker colors of Bamboo bedding, the resulting stain is pretty obvious. Appearing like a smudge on the sheets, this stain-like effect can be surprisingly difficult to remove. The typical suggestion is that, after a number of wash cycles, the stain will pull out on its own.
To better help you avoid frustrations while trying to remove said “stain”, here are three techniques to quickly pull oil, or should we say “unwick”, out of your Bamboo bedding.
First Attempt: Zote Laundry Flakes. We have had tons of success pulling lotion and oil stains out of Bamboo with this incredibly cheap product. For the wash cycle, use whatever your favorite detergent is, but add 1/2 cup of Zote directly to your load. Wash on WARM temp, MEDIUM SPIN, and HEAVY to ensure an extended soak. Dry on MEDIUM.
Stain removed? No? Then let’s try the next step…
Second Attempt: Pre-soak your stained bamboo bedding in a vinegar/water mixture at a ratio of 1 to 3. Allow to soak for a couple of hours and follow up with wash on COLD temp, MEDIUM SPIN. Dry on MEDIUM.
Stain removed? No? Then let’s throw the Hail Mary of oil stain removal.
Third Attempt: We hate to admit this, but you can use bleach. We know, we said it! One of the benefits of having our sheets in a number of AirBnB properties, is that we get a wonderful platform to test how best to maintain our Bamboo bedding in — what’s the word? — harsher conditions. And we didn’t save the Bleach for only our white bedding, as it works on the darker colors too. Just remember, that it has to be applied properly.
HE Washers: Add about 1/3rd the recommended bleach to your HE Washers bleach tray. Wash your sheets as usual. As long as your HE washer is working properly, the Bleach will be mixed with the water beforehand, and safely wash your sheets without harming the colors.
Non-HE Washers: Allow washer to pre-fill with COLD or WARM water, mixing in 1/3 cup of bleach. Allow the beach to properly mix before adding Bamboo bedding. Set to HEAVY load with MEDIUM spin. Dry on MEDIUM/WARM.
Still stuck? Vent to us! Have further recommendations for removing oils from Bamboo? We’d love to hear it! Reach out to us by email or social media.