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Consumer Reports: Which stain removers clean up your act best?


Stains are inevitable, so that’s why Consumer Reports just compared several different concentrated, spray-on stain removers from Oxi Clean, Shout and Spray n Wash. CR tasked the stain removers with typical -- yet difficult -- stains.

CR uses 14 swatches -- each saturated with a different stain -- things like coffee, chocolate ice cream, grass, blood, gravy, cherry juice, lipstick, baby food, used motor oil and mustard.

Testers spray half of each piece of stained fabric with the stain remover, rub the stain remover into the stain, let it soak in for 5 minutes or overnight and then wash them with a normal load of laundry.

This instrument -- a colorimeter -- measures the color of the stained fabric swatches before and after treatment with the stain removers.

An additional test was done by comparing the stain removers to two of CR’s top-rated liquid laundry detergents.

CR took some of the best detergents and applied them to the swatches, rubbed them into the stain and then put them in the laundry and washed them. CR found out that some of these detergents did better than a lot of the stain removers. In fact, only ONE of the stain removers performed better than the two laundry detergents. It's the OxiClean Max Force Spray.

Or consider the top-rated Tide Plus Ultra Stain Release or Persil Pro-Clean Stain Fighter regular detergents. Both came close to the cleaning power of the OxiClean Spray.