How to Remove Chewing Gum from Your Clothes Effectively

Is the tiny piece of chewing gum stuck on your clothes refusing to budge? Try the simple yet effective methods given here.

Updated Reading Time: 5 minutes

How to remove chewing gum from clothes
Comfort Delicates Fabric Conditioner

Once you get chewing gum on your garments, you know the struggle of removing it is real. This makes it important to know how to remove chewing gum from clothes. You have come to the right place.

This rubber-like material once stuck to your clothes will refuse to come off. The trick is to treat your clothes as soon as you spot chewing gum stuck to it. Or else, the gum will penetrate deep into the fabric, and may not come off without damaging it. Here are some tried and tested methods on how to remove chewing gum from clothes. 

Ingredients to keep handy:

a) Paper towels

b) Coconut oil

c) Vinegar

d) Laundry detergent

e) Old toothbrush

f) Iron

g) Cardboard

h) Vinegar

i) Hairspray

Comfort Delicates

Method 1: Using the Freezer

  1. Step 1: Remove the Gum

    Use a paper towel to remove as much of the chewing gum as possible. This will keep it from penetrating deeper into the fibres of your clothing.

  2. Step 2: Freeze the Clothing

    In a biodegradable bag, drop 5-6 ice cubes. Put it on the stained portion of your clothing for 10-15 minutes. This will cause chewing gum to harden. Alternatively, you can fold your garment, put it in a resealable bag and place it in your freezer for 1 hour.

  3. Step 3: Scrape Off the Residue

    The hardened gum will easily flake with a scraper or spoon. Gently remove the residue. Avoid touching the gum, as this can warm it up and make it difficult to remove. Get rid of the leftover traces with a firm toothbrush.


  4. Step 4: Treat with Vinegar

    Directly pour 3-4 drops of undiluted white vinegar on the affected portion of the garment. Gently brush with a firm toothbrush and wait for 10-15 minutes. Then wash as you normally do.

Method 2: Using Coconut Oil

  1. Step 1: Heat Coconut Oil

    Heat some coconut oil in a bowl. Ensure that the oil is not boiling hot but just warm. 

  2. Step 2: Treat Chewing Gum With Warm Oil

    Dip the chewing gum stained part of your garment in the oil. The gum will begin melting. Scrape off the liquid using an old toothbrush. Keep at it until you've scraped off the residue gum from the fabric. 


  3. Step 3: Treat With Laundry Detergent

    Pour 2-3 drops of liquid detergent on the stained spot. You may try Surf Excel Matic Liquid. It is easily available in the market. Check the instructions on the pack before using any product. Scrub gently with your fingertips under cold tap water. It will remove the tiny bits of gum from the fabric. Rinse thoroughly. Let the garment air dry. 

Method 3: Using Liquid Detergent

  1. Step 1: Treat Gum With Detergent

    Cover the chewing gum with generous amounts of liquid detergent. You can try Surf Excel Matic Liquid as it leaves no residue (like powders do) as being a liquid it dissolves completely in water. Read the label on the pack to understand proper usage instructions. Now, gently scrub the detergent with an old toothbrush. It will break up the gum into tiny pieces.

  2. Step 2: Scrape Off the Gum

    Use a butter knife to scrape off the tiny crumbs of gum from your garment. Repeat step 1, if needed. 


  3. Step 3: Wash Your Garment

    Once you've removed all the bits of chewing gum from your garment, wash it like you usually do. 

Method 4: Using an Iron

  1. Step 1: Place a Cardboard on the Gum

    Keep your garment on cardboard such that the chewing gum is between the fabric and the cardboard. 

  2. Step 2: Iron Your Garment

    Now, set the iron on medium heat setting and iron the stained portion of the garment. The heat will cause the gum to transfer onto the cardboard. Keep at it until the gum has transferred onto the cardboard completely.

  3. Step 3: Wash Your Garment

    After the gum has come off, you can wash the garment as you normally do.

Method 5: Using Vinegar

  1. Step 1: Heat a Cup of Vinegar

    Ensure that the vinegar is just below boiling hot. You can heat the vinegar in a microwave or the stove. 

  2. Step 2: Treat the Gum With Hot Vinegar

    Dip an old toothbrush in the cup with hot vinegar and scrub the gum with it. The chewing gum will soften and come off the fabric. Keep dipping and rubbing the brush until all the gum is out. Reheat the vinegar, if necessary. 

  3. Step 3: Wash Off the Vinegar

    Pour 2 drops of liquid detergent on the area affected by the chewing gum. You can try Surf Excel Matic Liquid as it leaves no residue (like powders do) as being a liquid it dissolves completely in water. Gently scrub with your fingertips and rinse off the detergent with cold water. Let the garment air dry.

You can also use a hairspray to remove chewing gum from clothes. Simply grab the patch where the chewing gum is stuck to your clothing item. Spray hairspray directly onto the gum. It will harden the gum. The hardened gum should come off easily. Now, just scrape it off using a butter knife or a spoon. Then wash off the residue hairspray on your garment using an effective laundry detergent.

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The next time you find gum stuck to your child's new shirt, don't panic. You know what you should do. 

Note the type of fabric before employing any of the gum-removing techniques. For example, using coconut oil is the best way to remove chewing gum from synthetic materials. 

Originally published