How to Remove Wax from a Tablecloth

How to Remove Wax from a Tablecloth

A nice, candlelit dinner party. Your best white tablecloths. What could go wrong? The short answer—everything. Long-time cleaning veterans know that tablecloths bear the brunt of wear and tear, and candle wax is no exception. Cleaning wax from fabric can be a painful process. If you’re not careful, you can even grind the wax into the fabric fibers or cause long-lasting damage. Removing candle wax from tablecloths may be frustrating, but you don’t have to go straight to dry cleaning. With a little DIY technique (and some help from your friends at Charlie’s Soap), your tablecloths can look good as new.


This hack requires a few materials that you likely have in your home:

Brown paper bag

Clothing iron 

Charlie Soap Indoor & Outdoor Surface Cleaner

1. Apply Heat

You may be tempted to remove the hardened wax. With a dull knife or credit card, you might be able to scrape some away, but it’s likely to mash the wax and oils into the fabric and cause damage the delicate fabric. If the fabric is silk or linen, scraping at wax could break the fabric fibers.

The best way to handle wax spills is to reheat the wax. While a hair dryer may work, a warm iron is the most effective way to reheat and remove the wax all at once. First, set the iron to a low-heat setting. On an ironing board or heat-safe surface, lay out the tablecloth, making sure that the melted wax is flat. Position the brown paper bag over the wax. Be sure to use a paper bag, not a plastic bag. Heat from the iron will cause plastic to stick to the tablecloth.

Gently iron on top of the brown paper bag, moving in a slow, circular motion. After a few minutes, lift the paper bag. The wax should have transferred from the tablecloth to the paper bag. If excess wax is still on the tablecloth, reapply the paper bag and continue ironing until there is no remaining wax. This should effectively lift the wax, oils, and additional pigments. However, you may be left with some stubborn residue.

2. Spot Clean

If the remaining candle wax stains are making you reconsider the dry cleaner, don’t worry. You just need a cleaner equipped to tackle tough stains. Charlie’s Soap Indoor & Outdoor Surface cleaner is designed to be gentle on household and outdoor surfaces while targeting grime and grease. The best part? It’s perfect for spot cleaning. If you want to save yourself from an extra load of laundry, you can use this cleaner to remove the residue, no washing machine required.

Start by spraying the cleaner onto the stained area. Scrub at the stain with a soft-bristled brush or a microfiber cloth, then rinse with cool water. Just like that—your tablecloth is returned to its former glory. 

3. Wash—Optional 

Looking to get a full clean for your tablecloths? Just finish up the process with a powerful laundry detergent. Charlie’s Soap Natural Liquid Laundry Detergent is free of fragrances, irritants, phosphates, and other harmful additives. It’s perfect for all your laundry conundrums, from your most delicate table linens to your brightest whites. Warm water, cold water, HE or regular machines—it all works with Charlie’s powerful green cleaning power.

Charlie’s Soap: Clean, for Life

Whether you’re dealing with waxy residue or greasy spills, Charlie’s Soap has what you need. Looking for a powerful stain remover? An environmentally friendly bleach alternative? An all-in-one household cleaner? Look no further. No matter the mess, Charlie’s Soap has the cleaning power to handle it. Explore more Charlie’s Soap cleaning solutions.


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