Checking Dye Stability: Everything You Need To Know About the Fabric Bleed Test

In your illustrious laundering career, it’s highly probable that you’ve come across a big red stain after taking your freshly washed clothes out of the washer. There’s nothing more disappointing than a blotch of red on a beautiful white dress. But it’s important to know how these stains occur so you can prevent them in the future.

Here are two primary reasons:

  1. you aren’t sorting your laundry according to color
  2. the dyes in one of your garments are bleeding onto other clothes

Sorting your clothes is a habit that you need to develop. And if you feel like one of your clothes will bleed when you put it in the washer, it is a smart idea to do a fabric bleed test first.

What Is A Fabric Bleed Test?

A fabric bleed test determines the color staining ability of your new garments. It also checks for the risk of darker colors bleeding on top of others. This test is crucial if you’re fond of dark colors (red, blue, violet, black, and the like).

Not performing a fabric bleed test will not only ruin each of these colors, but it will also affect your pastel-colored garments and delicates.

The following are some ways to perform a fabric bleed test:

Soap And Water

The first step is to submerge a small portion of the garment in soapy water—two-inches of cloth is enough to detect a color bleed. At this point, you should be using the same water temperature and soap that you use while doing your laundry.

Is The Color Changing?

The color won’t bleed right after you’ve submerged the fabric in your soap solution. It’s best if you let it sit for 30 minutes. Even a hint of color change in the solution means that the fabric will ruin your other garments.

The Water Is Clear

If there’s no color change in your soap solution, that doesn’t mean that the fabric can’t bleed. To ensure that the fabric won’t bleed when you wash it with other garments, you need to take out the patch from the water and place it over a white paper towel without rinsing.

Wait for a while until the paper towel absorbs a considerable amount of moisture— this should give the dye enough time to bleed if it is loose or has been misapplied.

You can perform this test several times to ensure that the fabric won’t loosen and bleed after several washes. If the bleeding doesn’t stop even after several washes, you should always wash that piece of clothing separately.

If you’ve been having a hard time dealing with your clothes bleeding, you can get in touch with our experts here at NY Organic Dry Cleaners.


We’re an organic dry cleaning service in New York. We also offer wash and fold laundry services, laundry pickup and drop off and dry cleaning in NYC. Visit our website for more details or get in touch with us at 718-459-7770 to learn more about our services.