A stained neckline on a dress shirt can be removed using household items.

How to Clean the Neck Line on a Dress Shirt

by S.R. Becker

No matter how clean you are, you can still end up with ring-around-the-collar on your dress shirts. A stained neckline comes from a combination of sweat and body oils, and once it's ground in, it can be difficult to remove. However, you don't have to walk around with an embarrassing yellow collar or throw your shirts away. Proper pre-treatment of stains and a trip through the washing machine with the right products can banish ring-around-the-collar.

Pour undiluted liquid laundry detergent containing oxygen cleaner directly onto the stain. Scrub the stain gently with a soft toothbrush, just enough to work the detergent in.

Let the detergent soak into the shirt for 30 minutes, then put the shirt in the washing machine. Set the machine for a hot wash.

Add the amount of laundry detergent recommended on the bottle to the washing machine. If the shirts are white, add 1/2 cup of chlorine bleach to a top loader, or the recommended amount to the bleach dispenser of a front loader. If the shirts are colored, add 1 cup of white vinegar or a scoop of oxygen bleach.

Remove the shirt from the washing machine after the cycle finishes. If the stain remains, repeat the steps above.

Hang the shirt to dry in a sunny area with the inside of the collar exposed. Sunlight can help lighten stains and prevent any remaining ring-around-the-collar from setting in the dryer.

Items you will need

  • Laundry detergent with oxygen cleaner
  • Soft toothbrush
  • Chlorine bleach, oxygen bleach or white vinegar

About the Author

S.R. Becker is a certified yoga teacher based in Queens, N.Y. She has a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and has worked as a writer and editor for more than 15 years. Becker often writes for "Yoga in Astoria," a newsletter about studios throughout New York City.

Photo Credits

  • George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images