It's almost inevitable for coffee drinkers, that at some point in the future, that cup of hot liquid you're holding is going to spill.
Maybe it will be just a few drops that harmlessly fall to the ground.
But in the worst case scenario, it's a considerable amount that spills straight onto your clothing, carpet or other valued item.
Coffee looks nice in a cup.
Coffee does not look nice when it's soaking through your white shirt when you're on your way to work.
Fear not though, because if you follow our advice, you'll be well-prepared with the best tips to remove coffee stains.
Along with the much-loved ingredient of caffeine, coffee also contains tannins, which are naturally occurring compounds found in many places in nature, including in plants, wood, bark and leaves.
Other stain culprits like wine and tea contain plenty of tannins, as does chocolate.
If there are too many tannins in coffee, it can cause the brew to taste bitter and leave a dry feeling in your mouth.
Tannins are strong little things and love sticking to places, hence why your dentist can probably tell if you're a coffee drinker or not from a quick look at your teeth.
So now that the science is out of the way, let's get cracking with how to actually remove coffee stains.
The most important step in removing a coffee stain is to act QUICKLY!
As soon as that liquid touches something it shouldn't, start looking for a tap or a way to wash the stain off.
Don't scrub the stain with a paper towel or similar, as this may spread the stain and bind it further with the clothing material.
For a spill on clothing, try the following steps:
This should remove most of the stain, and make your garment wearable for the rest of the day.
Depending on the fabric and extent of the stain, by following up later with a hot water washing machine cycle, your item should be back to normal.
If cold water doesn't work, or the spill has had time to dry out, then it's time to try some more powerful methods for removing the stain.
The easiest solution to remove a coffee stain is to use a stain remover spray or gel, which are available from all supermarkets.
Have a look at the instructions on the back of the product. Generally, you spray these products onto the stain, leave them to soak in, before washing off.
Try the following when removing stubborn coffee stains with liquid laundry detergent:
If the stain is still there after a second rinse, try the below method.
For more stubborn stains, try this:
If you have no laundry detergent or powder on hand, then dish liquid can also get the job done.
Follow the same steps as what was recommended for liquid laundry detergent.
While white clothing makes a coffee spill way more visible, it also makes it easier to remove the stain by using bleach.
Simply try the following:
There's nothing worse than an unsightly coffee stain on your carpet at home, especially if it's a light colour.
Just like with clothing, a speedy response is key to saving your carpet.
For these types of stains try this:
The next step is to either use a carpet stain remover, or to make your own concoction by using one part liquid detergent, one part white vinegar and two parts warm water.
Whether you're a coffee fanatic or just someone who seems to attract bad luck, it pays to have a plan in place for coffee spills.
Keep a change of clothes in your car or at your workplace...you never know when they might come in handy.
And whatever you do, always keep a reasonable distance between your coffee and expensive electronics. Liquids and laptops don't mix well!
Lastly, invest in a quality reusable cup. Not only are they good for the environment, but their lids are more secure than a standard takeaway cup.
With these plans in place, the next time your coffee decides to go for a wander, you can smile and know exactly how to defuse the situation.