15 of the toughest carpet stains to remove have been ranked, according to the most common pleas by Reddit users. 

From red wine to cooking oil, users of the popular social media site regularly flood the forums with questions on how to get rid of some of life's peskiest stains.

The experts at Online Carpets have taken a deep dive into Reddit to see what stubborn spills users are complaining about the most, debunk some of the advice given in the comments and share some top tips of their own.

The 15 Most Stubborn Carpet Stains

South Wales Argus: Here are The 15 Most Stubborn Carpet Stains. ( Online Carpets)Here are The 15 Most Stubborn Carpet Stains. ( Online Carpets) (Image: Online Carpets)

Here are the 15 most stubborn carpet stains to get rid of, according to Online Carpets.

  1. Ink 
  2. Red Wine
  3. Mud
  4. Coffee
  5. Candle Wax
  6. Pet-Related
  7. Bleach
  8. Cleaning Products
  9. Cosmetics
  10. Food
  11. Cooking Oil
  12. Vomit
  13. Old Carpet Stains
  14. Hair Dye
  15. Chocolate


Ink was deemed the most stubborn stain to get out of your carpet, according to Online Carpets' research.

The carpet experts noted that although it wasn’t the stain with the highest number of individual posts on Reddit, the posts themselves had the highest amount of average upvotes.

This shows that while it may be an uncommon incident, it’s definitely one of the most irritating. 

Online Carpets added that ink posts saw an average upvote of 1,286.6 which is almost double the number of reactions to red wine (which came in second).

How to get rid of red wine out of a carpet

South Wales Argus: Online Carpets debunks carpet cleaning tips from Reddit users. (Getty Images)Online Carpets debunks carpet cleaning tips from Reddit users. (Getty Images) (Image: Getty Images)

With an average of 644.8 upvotes per post, it’s clear that this cleaning cliché is a nightmare that continues to plague wine lovers.

Online Carpets have debunked some of the suggestions in the comments though that it says "sound as though they would make the stain worse".

For example, one person posted: “Spilled red wine on your new carpet? The tannins in wine act like a magnet, so pouring more red wine on the stain will act like a magnet and make removing it easier."

Another user queried “Why when you spill red wine on a carpet do you take the stain out with white wine?”

The carpet experts debunked: "While the former seems to be little more than a hypothesis, pouring white wine onto a red wine stain can actually help you blot out the liquid". 

How to get mud stains out of a carpet

South Wales Argus: Here's how you can get mud out of your carpet. ( Getty Images)Here's how you can get mud out of your carpet. ( Getty Images) (Image: Getty Images)

Coming in third, desperate cleaners complained and pleaded about getting mud out of their cosy carpets whether it is from kids' shoes or soil from potted plants.

The dirty stain saw an average of 304.9 upvotes per post but Online Carpets has a solution.

The experts said: "When it comes to removing mud, unlike other stains you actually want this to dry so that you can vacuum up as much as possible, you can even use a bristle brush prior to this to loosen any additional mud from the carpet’s fibres.

"After removing the excess dirt, you can begin addressing the stain by mixing mild dishwashing detergent with lukewarm water and blotting this into the carpet with a clean cloth. Continue blotting, switching the towel until the stain is gone, you can then dry the area with a clean cloth or towel". 

6 tips to get rid of carpet stains

  1. Remove excess solids or liquids from the stain so that anything that can be cleaned doesn’t turn into a permanent stain 
  2. Work from the outside of the stain inward, using a blotting technique rather than rubbing motions to prevent spreading and carpet fibre damage 
  3. Continue until your cloth no longer picks up any colour
  4. Use a carpet stain remover as per application instructions, or utilise commonly suggest homemade cleaners such as 1 teaspoon of dishwashing liquid and a quarter teaspoon of white vinegar diluted in 1 quart of warm water. Be very careful not to over-wet the stain, and let it sit for 10 minutes
  5. If using a commercial carpet stain remover, be sure to test the product in a non-visible area of the carpet 
  6. Blot the stain away with cold water, and continue until the colour no longer transfers onto your cloth, then blot dry. 


These 6 general tips were gathered by Online Carpets and can be used to help you get even the most stubborn of stains out of your carpet.