Marisabel asked: How can I clean blue jean dye from my white, rubber watch strap? I just bought a Michael Kors white watch, but my blue jeans, with some contact, have already stained the strap. Is there a way to remove this bluish stain? I’ve tried soap and water, acetone and alcohol. It has removed it a little bit. Is there a way to whiten it completely or at least improve it?
If you’ve tried the usual methods of cleaning a rubber watch strap, most of which include soap and water or alcohol-based liquids, without success, here are a couple of tricks you can try. In most cases, one of these techniques should improve the look of your watch strap if not return it to its former glory.
You Will Need:
- White pencil eraser
- Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
- White cloth
- Safety glasses
Steps to Remove the Stain:
- The easiest thing to try is a regular pencil eraser. It’s perfect for removing marks and smudges from rubber and works like a charm! Use white erasers as the pink ones may leave pink smudges.
- If a regular pencil eraser doesn’t work, try a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser or similar product. Simply moisten the sponge and rub it over the stained area.
- If that doesn’t do it, grab your safety goggles and move on to the next step.
- Mix four parts water with one part bleach in a cup or small bowl. You will need less than ¼ cup of the finished solution, so only mix a small amount.
- Wearing eye protection, moisten a white cloth with the mixture. Do not use a colored cloth. You will likely transfer color from the cloth to the watch band and make your problem worse.
- Carefully dab the bleach against the stain on the watch band. Don’t over apply the bleach or leave it for more than a few seconds or you may damage the rubber.
- If needed, increase the strength of the solution by adding a bit more bleach. Do this in small increments to expose the rubber watchband to as little bleach as necessary.
- Blot and repeat as necessary if you see improvement.
- Once the stain is removed, rinse the band well with water to remove all the bleach residue.
- If the stain remains, mix the Rit Dye Remover with a small amount of water to make a paste.
- Spread the paste onto the stained area and allow it to set for a minute.
- Rinse with water and dry with a soft cloth.
- Repeat if necessary.
Additional Tips and Advice
- Once you have the band clean, treat it with Armor-All wipes made for vinyl car interiors. This easy tactic will help protect the band from stains and smudging. Repeat every few weeks for maximum effect.
- Be careful with acetone on rubber watch bands. It can start to break down the rubber and make the band feel “sticky.” Once done, this can be difficult to reverse.