10 Life-Changing Hacks for Fixing Ruined Clothes

by juliannecronin

The following is a guest post by Julianne Cronin of The Wink.

It happens to the best of us. One minute you’re laughing it up at dinner, the next minute you’ve splashed red wine down the front of your favorite dress. Insert crying emoji and several thousand curse words.


Don’t give up on your favorite pieces quite yet. Try these easy tricks for salvaging those damaged garments you just can’t seem to part with!

Hack #1: Use a banana peel to shine leather.

As it turns out, you don’t need expensive shoe polish to make your shoes glisten and gleam. If your best pumps are looking a little worse for wear, use the inside of a banana peel to shine them up.

slippery banana skin on a white background

Hack #2: Remove oil stains with chalk.

Clay and chalk absorb oil! It’s the same idea behind dry shampoo. Alternatively, if you don’t have chalk handy, you could spray a tiny bit of dry shampoo onto the grease stain.


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Hack #3: Freeze your jeans.

If your perfectly worn and broken-in jeans are emitting a questionable odor, try freezing them! Fold them and place in a large plastic bag and freeze overnight. The freezer will kill most odor-causing bacteria and prevent your jeans from getting faded and worn from over-washing.


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Hack #4: Remove deodorant marks with a piece of foam.

Scrub the white marks out with a piece of dry foam (like the kind on dry cleaning hangers). Alternatively, a pair of pantyhose will work in a pinch. Also: prevent this from happening on the reg by applying your deodorant after you get dressed. 🙂


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Hack #5: Use clear nail polish to stop pantyhose runs + button threads.

By now, everyone knows that to stop a pantyhose run, you should dab a bit of clear nail polish on both ends. But did you know that you can also use clear nail polish on loose button threads to prevent them from unraveling further? New life hack!


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Hack #6: Shine patent leather with Windex.

It’s just as easy as it sounds: shine up your patent leather bags and shoes with a bit of Windex on a paper towel. It restores the glossy sheen without doing any damage to the material.


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Hack #7: Fix an underwire bra with a moleskin patch.

Typically sold as a shoe insert, moleskin actually has a variety of uses. Fix an underwire that’s poking through with a patch and salvage your favorite bra!


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Hack #8: Fix a stuck zipper with Vaseline.

Sometimes all it takes to free the zipper is a little lubrication. Using a q-tip, dab a bit of Vaseline on the stuck zipper and it should free up in no time!


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Hack #9: Shave the pills off of your sweater.

Back in the day, they used to sell sweater shavers (my mom totally had one!). Save yourself some money and just use a regular old razor or blade to carefully shave the pills off your favorite sweaters. Then, use a lint roller to take off the pilling. So easy (and addicting…)!


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Hack #10: The secret formula to remove the toughest stains is…

Using a mixture of 2 parts hydrogen peroxide, 1 part Dawn dishwashing liquid, and 1 part baking soda will remove even stains that have set for over a year. Use a brush to scrub the mixture into the stain and let it soak for 1 hour. Wash the garment regularly and the stain will be gone! We guarantee it.


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Sometimes, your best clothing just needs a little TLC to get it back to looking brand new. Don’t give up on them until you’ve tried these ten tips!

What are some of your best hacks for fixing ruined clothing?