We’ve all been there: one minute you’re carrying your coffee through to settle in front of the television or your laptop, the next it’s all over you – and your carpet – because you tripped on the cat, or the corner or a rug, or a step.

Coffee is one of those things that people so often consider to be the number one sin on a pale carpet – never coming out, and always leaving behind a stubborn mark. Well, to those people, we say simply that maybe their cleaning method is wrong.


The types of coffee stains that you may find yourself tackling

Walk into any coffee shop or hot drinks bar and you will see that coffee is not one straightforward beverage. In fact, coffee is a drink that comes with a wide array of different variations and interpretations – ranging from the simplicity of a black coffee to the sweet solution of something with cream and sugar.

Coffee stains are no different, with one of the pinnacle differences in stains being that those that are fresh and still wet, and those which are old stains of dried coffee.
Each of these different coffee types and different levels of staining requires differing cleaning solutions and approaches:

  •  Cleaning with baking soda – 1 tablespoon of baking soda, 2 cups of lukewarm water
  •  Cleaning with dishwasher fluid – 1 tablespoon of dish soap, 2 cups of lukewarm water, 1 tablespoon of white vinegar
  •  Cleaning with salt – 2 tablespoons of salt and water in a spray bottle
  •  Cleaning with lemon juice – ¼ cup of lemon juice and 2 cups of lukewarm water in a spray bottle
  •  Cleaning with shaving cream – shaving cream, ¼ cup of white vinegar
  •  Cleaning with stain remover – carpet stain remover and a vacuum cleaner

NB: If you use a carpet stain remover, pay attention to the information on the bottle and ensure that what you are buying is conducive to the type of carpet you have.

The beauty of working with this list is that you are likely to have at least one of these items in your home at any given time – meaning you are always equipped to deal with coffee stains of some description.

But before you dive into mixing up cleaning solutions and getting down on all fours to scrub and work on cleaning the carpet, you need to prep the stain for removal.

Step One: Prepping the area

If your stain is fresh and still wet, the first thing you need to do is apply paper towels or a dry cloth to the stain and press down hard; soaking up as much of the liquid as you can.

It is important that you don’t scrub at the stain as you can transfer and push the liquid around, expanding the stain rather than stopping it. From there, you can try running cold water through the carpet if you’re able to pull it up to access both the carpet side and its underlay – if not, then it’s time to move on to step two.

If your stain is old and dried into the carpet, you first need to loosen the dried coffee with lukewarm water. The best way to do this and keep the area for cleaning at a minimum is to dip a clean cloth into the lukewarm water and dab at the stain.

Step Two: The cleaning process

This is where our earlier list comes into play, with all sorts of different ways of combating coffee stains on carpet depending on the severity of the stain and the implements you have available at the time of cleaning.

No matter which cleaning solution you go for, the cleaning process remains largely the same:

  1.  Apply the solution to the stain and gently rub at it using a dry cloth
  2.  Continue rubbing at the stain until it lifts – you may see some coffee residue on your cloth which will show it being drawn out from the carpet
  3.  Repeat the process if needed, until the carpet returns to its normal colour
  4.  Rinse the area with cold water and leave it to dry


There are instances where the process is a little more complex – for example if your stain falls onto a wool carpet or a woollen rug. In these cases, the best course of action is to call in a professional cleaning company to use industry-leading tools and techniques in order to restore your carpet to its former glory.

For more information and guidance on how to remove stubborn carpet stains from your carpet, get in touch with us or your local cleaning company today.