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Does Acetone Bleach Clothes? (All You Need to Know)

Our clothes getting stained now and then is a pretty normal activity. Using various products to get rid of the stains.

However, not all of them are good for your clothes. At times we get our clothes stained with nail paint and grease. And we often tend to use acetone to revise such tough stains.

Now, if you are wondering if acetone bleaches clothes, then you are at the right place. Today we are going to have a detailed discussion on whether acetone bleaches clothes or not. So, without making any more delay let’s get into it.

Does acetone bleach clothes?

Acetone does bleach clothes. Acetone is a strong element, it can bleach and also damage the cloth or the fabric. Therefore, try to avoid using acetone on any sort of fabric or clothing. However, nail polish remover can be used if required. Just make sure that it doesn’t contain any acetone in it.

Acetone is a colorless liquid that can be used to remove stains from clothing. However, it can damage some fabrics but it is proven effective to remove grease in colorfast materials.

Acetone can also stain your clothes when mixed with other chemicals. So, avoid mixing acetone with other chemicals.

Black clothes:

Acetone is most likely to damage and bleach your black clothes. However, when acetone is used in the true form it is most likely not to ruin the cloth.

But when it comes in contact with other chemicals it will end up bleaching your black clothes. Therefore, you would want to avoid using acetone on your black clothes.


Using acetone on your denim will make your clothes stain. Additives like conditioners or other sorts of chemicals mixed with acetone will end up causing stains on your denim clothes.

If you plan on using your nail paint remover, know that it will leave residual traces on the denim. Therefore, do not use acetone on your pieces of denim.  

Cotton clothes:

Cotton fabrics are soft and fragile. The usage of acetone on your cotton fabric is most likely to cause severe damage to your cotton clothes.

Cotton fabrics break down more easily than other fabrics. So, the application of acetone mixed with other chemicals will ruin your cotton clothes. However, direct application of acetone can be used on cotton fabric.

Polyester clothes:

Acetone can cause direct damage to plastic and synthetic materials. However, you can use acetone to remove stains from polyester clothes.

Additionally, when you use fabric conditioner and other chemicals it ends up staining your polyester clothes. So, it’s better not to use acetone on your polyester clothes.


Your leggings will most probably get stained if the leggings are made of sensitive fabrics. Also, while using acetone to remove stains or grease, avoid using other chemicals on the leggings.

Also, be extra careful about the spillage of acetone as it may ruin your leggings and leave a bleaching effect.

White cloth:

Acetone should not be used on fine fabrics such as silk or wool. Using acetone on white fine fabric will end up ruining the fabric. Also, rubbing the acetone in the cloth after applying it can cause damage to the white cloth. Therefore, avoid doing these things.

Does 100 acetone bleach clothes?

100 acetone will bleach clothes. Acetone is a colorless yet strong element. It is most likely to end up bleaching a piece of fabric if it is not colorfast. Additionally, it can also leave bleaching effects when acetone is mixed with other chemicals.

In the worst cases, acetone can eat up the weave of the clothing and remove more than just stains and color. Also, the usage of acetone on modacrylic and acetate fabrics will cause severe damage.

Acetone tends to get absorbed in these materials. Therefore, make sure to never use acetone on them.

However, keep in mind that acetone is a powerful organic solvent. It may not actively bleach your clothes which chlorine does, but it will cause some amount of damage to your clothes.

Therefore, give it a think before you plan on applying acetone to any of your fabric.  

Why does acetone bleach clothes?

Acetone is mostly used to prepare nail paint removers. However, it must not be used in clothes to clean them.

Here is the basic reason why acetone bleaches clothes:

Acetone reacts with other additives and ruins the fabric:

Acetone itself is a powerful solvent. Even though it is effective to remove grease and other stains it may end up causing damage to your fabric.

Additionally, acetone mixes with other additives used to clean clothes and reacts with it. Due to the chemical reaction between them, the cloth breaks down and loses its color.

Apart from that, spillage of acetone can also cause bleaching in your clothes. Acetone also tends to get absorbed by fabrics and eats up the weaving when applied to fine fabrics like silk.

Therefore, try using different types of ingredients to getting rid of the grease or stain. Using acetone may not result in something good. 

What clothes does acetone stain?

Acetone will stain almost all sorts of clothes when it comes in contact with other additives. However, the application of direct and pure acetone can be used to remove grease stains. Additionally, make sure the clothes are colorcast.

Acetone can easily stain, eat up and ruin your fabrics. Therefore, while removing the stain be careful about the spillage that may happen. Here is a list of clothes that acetone stain:

  • Cotton fabric
  • Wool fabric
  • Polyester fabric
  • Silk fabric
  • Synthetic fabric
  • Linen fabric
  • Acrylic fabric
  • Nylon fabric
  • Burlap fabric
  • Olefin fabric

What do you do if you spill acetone on your clothes?

There are a few things you can do. However, acetone is not likely to leave a residue if used solely. Acetone reacts with other chemicals present on the cloth and makes it stain.

The first and foremost thing to do to remove the stain is to act as fast as possible. You need to ensure that you start treating the cloth or fabric before it can fully absorb the acetone.

You may need to clean the cloth with lukewarm water and soft liquid soap. If the acetone starts to turn solid you will need to scrape it. And then use the liquid soap to get rid of the acetone.

Once you are done, you would want to rinse it like you wash your other clothes.

How to remove acetone stain from clothes?

Acetone stains can be hard to remove. Therefore, you should be careful or else it may bleach your clothes and make them lose their color.

Here are a few steps you can follow to remove acetone stains from clothes:

Dabbing the cloth with a towel:

The first condition to get rid of the stain or to keep it from staining is to act as fast as possible. As soon as you notice the spillage on the cloth. Use an old towel to dab on the fabric and let it soak the acetone.

You’d want to do this before your fabric or cloth absorbs the acetone and the fabric starts to break down.

Scraping off the solids:

If your acetone has already been soaked up by the cloth, use a spoon to scrape off the solid residues. Make sure to remove as much as possible.

Applying a mixture of liquid dish soap and lukewarm water:

You would want to mix ¼ tablespoon of liquid soap in 1 cup of water. Stir the mixture to mix it well. And then gently rub the mixture. You may wanna work from the outside to the center of the cloth.

Using an old piece of rag, gently rub the mixture in motions. However, make sure you do not rub roughly or use any sort of pressure. Keep doing this until the stain is gone.

Let the rag soak up the liquid:

Use another clean rag and place it over the dishwasher soap mixture on the cloth. The rag should soak up both the soap-water mixture and the acetone. However, if you are working with large pieces of clothes you may need to use more than one rag.

Rinsing with cold water:

Once the rag has soaked up all the soapy water, you can rinse the cloth with cold water. Use another clean piece of cloth to get rid of any moisture. And then wash your fabric like you normally would. This should help you get rid of the acetone stain.

Final Thoughts

Acetone does bleach clothes. However, pure acetone can be used to clean grease marks. And it is proven effective. Additionally, acetone mixed with other elements can leave residue on your clothes. Apart from that, when acetone is used on fine clothes, it may cause severe damage.