Watch out for messy eaters at barbecues

Barbecue season is upon us and there is no better way to enjoy a sunny day in lockdown than to fire up the grill, dig out the tongs and get cooking.

However barbecue food can be a messy and sticky affair, causing permanent stains if left untreated.

Here are the top ten stains you are likely to encounter during hot weather and how to deal with them.


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    The most common barbecue stain, ketchup needs to be treated as soon as possible. Carefully clear any excess from the area, being sure not to spread the mark. Gently rub some washing-up liquid into the area, before rinsing with cold water.


    A cold glass of white wine is a required beverage at a barbecue. If you have an unfortunate spillage, make sure you blot the alcohol with a cloth until the liquid is absorbed, then sponge with cold water. Treat the stain with a stain remover.

    Fruit juice


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    As long as you keep it moist, you should be able to shift most fruit juice stains. Simply pop on a hot wash or soak in vinegar if the stain is a dark fruit.


    There isn’t a barbecue without some meat, however red meat stains such as burgers, steaks and lamb kebabs can be a nightmare to remove. Cooked meat produces an oily stain, so make sure to blot repeatedly to absorb as much oil as possible. Treat the mark with a stain remover, leave for up to 15 minutes and then wash.

    Ice lolly/cream


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    An ice lolly mixed with sweltering heat is an episode for disaster. Wash the spilled area with a laundry detergent and water, then use a cloth to help tackle the stain. Rinse the surface thoroughly with water and allow to dry.


    Grass stains can be particularly hard, so you’ll benefit from pre-soaking the area with a mixture of one-part spirit vinegar to two parts warm water for around 30 minutes.



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    When the sun is out, the garden is calling. Playing sports can lead to slide-tackles, diving and falling over, which creates an opportunity for mud to get on your clothes. Let the mud dry, then scrape off the dirt and wash clothes as normal.


    Beautiful plants can leave a permanent stain on your clothes if not treated quickly. Blot the stained fabric with a damp cloth then prepare to wash the garment. Use a stain remover to help break apart the mark.

    Sun cream


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    This oily substance can be a real pain to remove from clothes. Your best bet is to use a stain remover.

    The list was compiled by cleaning and laundry company Dr Beckmann which manufactures stain removers.

    (Photo by kzenon/Shutterstock).