The Best Ways to Spot Clean 4 Popular Types of Home Fabrics

woman spot cleaning sofa cushion fabric

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Maintaining a clean home can be challenging, but there are significant mental health benefits to doing so. The physical act of cleaning releases endorphins that can help relieve stress and contribute to overall well-being. One of the most important elements of keeping a clean home is ensuring your fabrics are fresh and neat. Spots and dirt are inevitable over time, but with a few tips and tricks, you’ll be able to effortlessly remove spots from your home fabrics and get back to enjoying a tidy space.

What is spot cleaning?

Spot cleaning is treating only the part of the item that has a stain on it. Spot cleaning can be done on almost any type of fabric, from linen to cotton, and can even be done on furniture and upholstery. While not every type of fabric is a candidate for spot cleaning, many common home fabrics can be treated this way.

Spot cleaning 4 common home fabrics

Home fabrics can be tricky to clean. Not only do you have to make sure that the cleaning agent you choose won’t cause damage to the fabric but sometimes, if the stain or spot is especially deep-set, it can require multiple treatments to get it out. These are four types of home fabrics that can commonly be treated at home with various cleaners.


Cleaning upholstery requires a lot of care, but it can be done at home with the right products. Different types of upholstery often require different products. In general, you should check with the manufacturer of your furniture to see if the piece requires a specific cleaner. If not, most gentle upholstery cleaners sold in stores should do the trick. Always vacuum the furniture before attempting to clean it, using circular motions to remove dirt and debris. Spot-test the cleaner by using it in a very small area. Once you know the cleaner is safe for your furniture, you can spot-clean the entire affected area.


Most linens, including table napkins and hand towels, can be washed in the washing machine with other fabrics. However, if one of your linens has a deep-set stain, you can spot-clean it by using a stain remover on the area in question. Let the piece sit for 15-20 minutes to let the treatment thoroughly soak in, then wash it with other similar linen items, using a gentle laundry detergent.


When cleaning a rug, always vacuum it first, so you can see exactly how much cleaner you’ll need. Depending on the type of fabric the rug is made from, you can either use a store-bought cleaner or you can mix up your own, using warm water and mild dish soap. Do a spot-test, then gently scrub the cleaner over the affected area and let it sit for about five minutes. If that doesn’t get rid of the stain, consider renting a carpet cleaner to do an even deeper clean on the rug.


The success of spot-cleaning clothing is widely dependent on the type of fabric that has the stain or spot. The first step in spot-cleaning clothes should be removing excess liquid or dirt from the spot in question. If the stain is already set into the fabric, dampen a small cleaning cloth and use it to gently press the cleaner of your choice into the spot.

Pat the stain rather than scrub it and work from the outside of the stain to the inner portion in order to keep the stain or spot from growing larger. Ideally, the stain will transfer to the cleaning cloth you’re using. Allow the garment to air dry after you clean it. Once it has fully dried, you can evaluate whether further treatments are needed.

How often should you clean home fabrics?

There’s no set timeline for cleaning home fabrics. Some people prefer to clean fabrics and upholstery every year, while others opt for twice-yearly deep cleanings. If you have pets or children, or if you have high-traffic areas in your home, you might want to consider more frequent cleanings. To prevent deep-set or lingering stains in your home fabrics, treat them immediately after they incur the spot. Resist the urge to scrub harder the second time you clean, since this can cause damage to the fabric.

What fabrics shouldn’t be treated at home?

While many fabrics can be spot-treated at home, there are some that should receive professional cleaning. These include silk, which can easily be distorted and ruined by standard household cleaners, and wool, which can shrink when exposed to traditional soap and water cleaning techniques. Suede can also be difficult to clean at home and is best treated by a professional dry cleaning company. If you have leather clothes or furniture, don’t try cleaning them yourself, since leather typically has special instructions for care and preservation.

Occasionally, home fabrics will get deep-set stains that won’t come out, regardless of how many times you try to scrub them away. During times like these, and to preserve your delicate clothes and fabrics, an upholstery cleaning service is your best bet. A cleaning company can handle the toughest stains, saving you time and energy all while restoring your belongings to like-new.

OXXO Cleaners That Care can help your belongings stay spotless

At OXXO Cleaners That Care, we’re proud to be a dry cleaning company that cares about you. We offer eco-friendly and non-toxic dry cleaning services that are convenient for your busy schedule. We understand how important it is for your cherished items to stay looking and feeling fresh, and to that end, we provide 24/ ATM-style pickups, a user-friendly app, and online payments. OXXO Cleaners That Care also provides custom tailoring and alteration services, in case any of your garments need a little nip and tuck to fit you perfectly. Whether you’re looking to refresh one or two pieces in your wardrobe or schedule regular weekly cleanings, OXXO Cleaners That Care can help.

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