Get Bike Grease Out Of Clothes: 5 Easiest Ways!

We’ve all been there: We go out to ride our bikes one time, and we come back looking like Oliver Twist. A bath may get rid of all the grime and dirt off our bodies. But how to get bike grease out of clothes?

These stains can form in a matter of seconds but take hours to deal with. These are a few of the peskiest spots to remedy, and anyone who cleans laundry can vouch for this fact.

We don’t know about you, but bike grease doesn’t really look all that fashionable to us. That’s why we have made a complete guide on removing bike grease from any shorts, pants, or jacket in the quickest way possible.

How Do You Get Bike Grease on Your Clothes Anyway?

You’ve probably heard this phrase: the best way to get out of a sticky situation is to avoid getting into it in the first place.

Don’t punch your computer screen, please. We know how annoying this suggestion can be, but it really is an amazing countermeasure.

If you want to avoid stains, you obviously need to know where you get those stains.

Bike grease or bicycle lubricants or bike oil or whatever you want to call them is a liquid put into the chain of your bike to make sure it can slide easily through the wheels.

This oil is usually black or really dark in color, and some residue is left on various parts of the bike when oiling up the chains, and obviously, a lot of it is on the chains.

When biking, you can get this oil on yourself in various ways; one obvious way is on your pants from contact with the chain. Another way is through residues on the bike seat or handles.

You might be wondering: “If I don’t use bike grease, I won’t get any stains. Problem Solved. Boy, am I a genius or what?!”

Well, buddy, I’ve got some bad news for you. Your bike simply won’t run without bike grease as the chain will get stuck, or worse, it will work but get stuck mid-road.

So, not using bike oil is a total no-no. Therefore, what can we do to stop the assault on our pants and shirts from this annoying mechanism?


The Precautionary Measures

Now that we know how you get the stains, let’s talk about the way to avoid those annoying blotches that every avid biker is plagued by.


The Dry Lubricants

News flash, bike grease isn’t the only way to lubricate your bike chain. You can choose from a variety of dry lubricant that works pretty great in making sure everything is up and running.

  • Step 1: Apply the Lubricant

You start by applying the wet lubricant the night before or, if you are in a time crunch, a few hours before the ride.

  • Step 2: Wait

The next step is all-out patience. Do not take the bike out before it dries completely. Not only you will get stains on your clothes, but the lubricant won’t work its magic.

  • Step 3: Ride

That’s it. It’s that easy: Apply the lubricant, wait, and you are good to go. This is by far the easiest process in this article.

What’s the catch? They wash off pretty easily. You cannot use them when you are riding through wet terrains. Also, it may wash off when it rains. Longevity is clearly not its strong suit.

Another con of using this oil is that it takes a long time to set. You need to apply it at least a few hours before going on the ride. This preplanning can get really irritating.

The Switcheroo

This is a simple three-step method that can help you avoid stains on your favorite clothes. It is literally foolproof and will work 100% of the time.

  • Step 1: Pack Two Sets of Clothes

I think you know where this is headed from here on out. You need to pack two pairs of clothes in a bag which is easy to carry (you are going biking after all); one for biking and one that you’re planning to wear at the destination.

  • Step 2: Change into Your Biking Get-up

When you are about to ride, change into a pair of clothes in a dark color where the stains won’t be evident, or if you feel like spending a little bit of moola, you can opt for one of those oil-resistant outfits. But it will run up quite a tab.

  • Step 3: Switch Back to Your Normal Clothes

Finally, you can switch back to your generic attire. It’s that easy. Zero stains or damage to your clothes

A lot of you must be very frustrated with this method, and we understand why. There are a lot of (valid) criticisms of this strategy.

For one, finding a place to change can be quite a challenge. If you are going biking in a mountain range, you’d be hard-pressed to find a private spot. Even if you do, changing is always a hassle.

Secondly, carrying the bag for those clothes is tedious too. You need to manage bike space accordingly and keep an eye on your bike rack continuously. Carrying a backpack offsets your balance, so we have to suggest against that.

Lastly, remember how we called this method foolproof? Well, there is one way you can mess up. Don’t put the dirty clothes and clean clothes in the same compartments. This is a no-brainer, but you’d be shocked by the number of people to whom it didn’t occur.

So, this isn’t the perfect answer to “how to get bike grease out of clothes?”…Obviously. So, let’s take a look at our final precaution.


The Cover-up

So what do you do to avoid getting the stains if you don’t want to use dry lubricants or have the capability to carry a bag or change in the place you are riding? It’s time to get artsy.

  • Step 1: Find or Carry Something to Cover Your Clothes with

This can be anything. You can use a raincoat, a piece of cardboard, plastic bags, or even paper bags. Anything is good as long as it doesn’t hinder your ability to ride.

  • Step 2: Take Cover

Hide your clothes behind the material, so there is no contact between the grease and your clothes. You can use them as covering or as a sacrificial barrier for your precious clothes.

That is it. Sound simple enough, doesn’t it? But the flaws here are countless. I’m sure you can think of one immediately.

The immediate flaw that comes to mind is the fact that you won’t look very fashionable wearing cardboard while commuting to work or even when going riding around the neighborhood. All eyes will be on you, just not in a good way.

Aside from making an absurd fashion statement, another huge issue with this method is finding the right materials. Not all of us have a raincoat handy, and crafting cardboard or plastic or paper bags to be wearable is no easy task.

Lastly, it will definitely be tough to ride with these things on you. We did tell you to avoid using things that would hinder your riding ability in the first step, but who are we kidding? You won’t be able to do wheelies wearing a raincoat.

The Old-School Methods

Suppose you’ve already gotten the stains. What can you do? Throw away that sleek pair of khakis? Discard that salmon shirt that your ex-girlfriend tried to steal? No way, partner. There are so many ways to salvage those clothes.

We are lucky that this problem has existed for so long because otherwise, we wouldn’t have gotten so many great life hacks. So, without further ado, let’s finally get to the ways you can get rid of these vexing stains.

The Name’s Bond, Gold Bond

That’s right. The powder doesn’t just cure a case of itches, but it also helps you keep your clothes clean or make them as good as new. You don’t have to use the brand mentioned in the title, though. We just saw the opportunity for an awesome pun.

We do, however, highly recommend using a specific type of powder. Baby powder, in particular, is perfect for this method. So, what is the way we turn a common household item into a Mary Poppins’ spoonful of sugar?

  • Step 1: Apply the Powder to the Stains

You start off by applying the powder to the afflicted region. Make sure you cover the entire region as you don’t want to repeat this method multiple times.

  • Step 2: Wait

The name of the game is patience. Much like when we apply dry lubricant, you need to make sure you give it adequate time to rest before moving on to the next step.

  • Step 3: Shake It Off

You know the saying; Taytay always knows best. Once you’ve let the powder sit on the stain for enough time, it’s time to shake off any excess powder.

  • Step 4: Wash the Clothes

Lastly, you need to wash the clothes to get rid of the powder and, hopefully, the stains too. Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions, don’t put suit in the washing machine…Please.

This was pretty easy too. If you can’t source baby powder, there are plenty of alternatives such as washing powder, detergent, borax, cornstarch, or baking soda.

The amount used, the time needed for the reaction to happen, and the washing intensity vary for each of the powders mentioned above.

Whatever powder you use, this method takes a lot of time and effort. That’s a bit of a downside to such an easy and available solution.

Another downside of this trick is storage. You need to store your clothes in a dry place while the powder is soaking up the stains. Also, keep it far away from toddlers as those little buggers eat anything, and chemicals such as borax are lethal.

Soap Is Your Best Hope

Soap is a great common household item. It keeps us clean, deals with our BO, and most importantly, keeps us safe from germs and disease. But it can also be the answer to the query regarding how to get bike grease out of clothes.

You read that right. This blessing can also help us get rid of these horrible stains, and we rate this method to be super simple as well.

  • Step 1: Soap It Up

Apply soap to the stains. Much like the previous method, you need to make sure you miss nothing, as we highly recommend against doing this process multiple times for one stain.

  • Step 2: Let the Magic Happen

Again, we follow the previous method by letting the clothes sit out and soak in the chemicals to fight with dirt and make your clothes as good as new.

  • Step 3: Washing Time

We stick to the step of shaking off the excess because your clothes will absorb all the soap. This final step is pretty standard. You just wash out the clothes.

And voila, soap has worked its magic. You can use alternatives here as well, such as dish soap, shampoo, or vegetable oil. And you can go all-natural with vinegar and lemon.

The cons here are pretty much the same as the method is pretty similar. There is an added pro here, however. The clothes end up smelling good if you use soap.


There you have it; a quick and simple guide for dealing with one of the worst first-world problems our generation faces.

We hope you never have to get rid of another awesome t-shirt or sick pair of pants because you forgot to switch into another pair before going biking.

After reading this article, we hope that you know how to get bike grease out of clothes as well as you know the back of your hand…Do we know the back of your hand all that well?

The point is you can show those stains who’s the boss. Most importantly, we hope you found this article informative and fun to read.

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