How To Get Vaseline Out Of Carpet (Step-by-Step Guide)

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart

Vaseline is considered to be one of the most useful household products on the market. It can moisturize your body. It can help lubricate items that squeak. It can also be turned into DIY lip gloss and more. Unfortunately, petroleum jelly is not one of those things that works well with carpeting. Ask anyone who’s spilled it on their carpet, and they’ll agree. How do you even lift this type of stain?

Pour rubbing alcohol over the stain and allow it to sit for 5 minutes to break down the Vaseline. Mix 1 tablespoon of dish soap with 1 cup of water in a bottle and spray the stain. Blot the stain with a rag until the stain slowly breaks up and eventually disappears.

If you spilled a particularly large amount of Vaseline or just have a lot of problems getting stains out of your carpet, then you will need to know a little more about carpet care. Let’s talk about this, shall we?

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Getting Vaseline Out Of Your Carpet

Admittedly, there is going to be a chance that you won’t be able to remove Vaseline from your carpet on your own. Petroleum jelly is not going to be easy to remove. If you want to give it a shot, try these steps below.

  • Scoop up any Vaseline you can, then apply some rubbing alcohol to the stain. This will help break down the oils that make Vaseline so hard to clean up.
  • Let it sit there for at least five minutes so that the alcohol can break down the oils. If the stain has a lot of petroleum jelly, you will need to reapply to fully break it down. Do not spray rubbing alcohol so deep that it touches your carpet backing. This can cause damage to your carpet.
  • Mix a tablespoon of dish soap and a cup of water in a spray bottle and spritz the area down. Let it sit for five minutes so that the soap fully absorbs.
  • Use a white rag to blot and dab at the Vaseline stain. The stain will transfer from the carpet to your rag. If you need to, don’t be afraid to spray some of the soapy water there.
  • Continue to dab. You may need to do multiple sessions to make this work.
  • Let your carpet dry for half an hour to an hour. We suggest getting a snack or a coffee during this time. Once your carpet is dried, inspect it. Most stains will be lifted from here.
  • If your carpet has been successfully cleaned, finish up your cleaning session with a vacuuming session. This will restore the fluffiness to your carpet.

A Note About This Stain Treatment Method

It’s important to recognize that rubbing alcohol can potentially damage a carpet. If rubbing alcohol gets to the carpet’s backing, there is a good chance that the alcohol will dissolve the adhesives keeping the backing together. This can lead to losing patches of fiber in your carpet. We strongly advise using the alcohol sparingly.

If you feel leery about using rubbing alcohol, it’s best to do a spot test so that you can determine if your carpet can handle this.

How To Get Rid Of More Stubborn Vaseline Stains On Your Carpet

Let’s say that you tried the first round of instructions and nothing happened. Or maybe, something happened but it just wasn’t enough. This trick might be able to lift out the remnants:

  • Grab some hydrogen peroxide. Mix 1 tablespoon of peroxide to 3 tablespoons of water, and put it in a spray bottle.
  • Spray down the area affected by the Vaseline spill. This should be enough to thoroughly wet, but not soak, the stained area.
  • Place a towel over the area and leave the area alone for 30 minutes. This will give enough time for the peroxide mixture to completely sink in. If you want to, get another cup of coffee while you wait.
  • Remove the towel and let the area dry. You should be able to see a fresh carpet underneath.
  • To “re-fluff” the area, pass over the now-dried area of the former stain with a vacuum cleaner. The vacuum will help bring the carpet back to its former texture.

A Note About This Stain Treatment Method

It’s important to know that some carpet materials do not take well to hydrogen peroxide. Prior to treating the entire area, it’s best to do a spot test in a little-visible area of your carpet. Should anything go wrong, you’ll know to avoid this treatment on the actual stain and be able to cover up the mistake.

Are There Any Other Ways To Get Rid Of A Vaseline Spill On The Carpet?

If you don’t feel like risking your carpeting through the use of hydrogen peroxide, you’re not alone. There are other options you can choose if you want a thorough cleaning done right. These include:

  • Dry Cleaning Solution. Dry cleaning solution can help out here. To use it, follow the instructions on the side of the box.
  • Laundry Detergent. A teaspoon of laundry detergent in two cups of cold water can replace the dish soap and water mixture. You can use the detergent that you’d use on clothing, even if it’s a fancy type.
  • Spot Remover. You know how Shout has those cool spot remover pens you can get at the check-out lines in Target? Yeah, those can work out well, too.

Should You Call A Professional To Clean Your Carpet?

With most stains, there’s usually no need to call a professional as long as it’s addressed quickly. However, Vaseline is a little bit different than most other stain materials. Vaseline can pose a threat to your carpet’s fibers, and some carpets can’t handle having rubbing alcohol on them at all. So, there’s a legit risk that you may need to think about.

If you have a carpet that is made of delicate materials (like silk or wool), or if you have a carpet that you just don’t want to take a chance with, calling a professional is a good idea. Moreover, if you followed the steps in this guide with less-than-stellar results, it may be a good idea to call a professional cleaning company for help.

How Much Would It Cost To Treat A Vaseline Stain On A Carpet?

If you need to get a professional cleaning crew, make sure to tell them what happened and how you treated the fibers. A typical professional carpet cleaning session will cost between $50 to $150 for one to three rooms. Most carpet cleaners will require a minimum of three rooms before they will come out, bringing the total to $150 to $300.

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Related Questions

How do you remove a Vaseline stain from clothing?

Rub some dish detergent onto the stain, scrub away, and then rinse your stain. If you need more cleaning power, soak your soiled clothing into a tub of Oxiclean and water for 20 minutes. Then, drop your clothing into the washing machine as you normally would. If your clothes are “Dry Clean Only,” the best thing you can do is take it to a professional laundromat.

What spot removers tend to work well with Vaseline stains?

Petroleum jelly stains are best worked out through the use of petroleum-based distillate products or products that have a high amount of hydrocarbons. So this would include stain removers like Shout, Guardsman’s Afta, Goof Off, and Goo Gone. A good way to find out if it’ll work is to see if it’s safe for carpets and is advertised as being good at removing oil stains.

What is Vaseline used for around the house?

Vaseline can be used as a lubricant for stuck items (like a ring stuck on the finger), or it could be used seal wood finishing that didn’t quite turn out right. Putting Vaseline and camphor on your tools can prevent rust, while putting Vaseline on glass surfaces can prevent paint splatters during a new painting session.

Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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