How to Remove Shampoo From Your Carpet in 7 Easy Steps

Shampoo and other carpet cleaning products can leave stains and odors on your carpet, which can be tough to get rid of.

With the right procedure, you may still be able to remove that shampoo from your carpet.

Whether you’re cleaning up after a spill or just happen to get some foam on the floor, this post will walk you through several methods, tips, and tricks to get those pesky stains out!


Find And Identify The Shampoo Spill ​

Look around your carpet area and see if you can spot anything that doesn’t belong there, like a white foam line along the baseboards or a giant lopsided stain under the rug. It might take some thorough analysis of the carpet fibers to pick out any shampoo stains from other dirt or debris that has accumulated. The spilled shampoo could be anywhere, so you need to get down on your knees and take a good look at the carpet around you.

Pick Up Remaining Shampoo With A Heavy Book ​

Use a large book, encyclopedia, or any other very heavy type of book to “push” the shampoo out of your carpet fibers. Simply place the book over the stained area and let it sit for about 5-10 minutes to allow gravity to work in your favor. The soap residue will transfer from the carpet to the book, which you can discard later (so don’t use a book you enjoy!) It might seem like a weird tactic, but this works especially well on soapy residue that’s dried onto the carpet.

Soak The Area ​

After you’ve waited for 10 minutes, spray a generous amount of vinegar onto the shampoo stain. Then pour baking soda on top of that spot and let it sit for another 5-10 minutes to soak up all the moisture from the carpet. Make sure to mix the baking soda and vinegar together before applying them to your carpet so it soaks up as much of the shampoo as possible.

Wash The Area With Soapy Water And A Sponge ​

Before you start this process, make sure you have some paper towels on hand to soak up excess water from your carpet or fabric – especially if your fabric is wool. Otherwise, the moisture could cause serious damage to your flooring or furniture.

  • Pour some lukewarm water into a bucket and mix in a couple of drops of dishwashing liquid.
  • Dip your sponge into the water and squeeze out any excess. If you have a sink or hose nearby, you can use those as alternatives to dipping your sponge each time.
  • Squeeze the soapy mixture over the stained area of the carpet.
  • Using a circular or scrubbing motion, work the soap into the fibers of your carpet. It’s important that you use only light pressure when scrubbing because too much force will push the shampoo deeper into your carpet, making it more difficult to remove. You don’t need to apply any real force, either, since the suds will help break up the shampoo.
  • Rinse out your sponge in the bucket and then soak up any soap residue from your carpet with it. Next, use a clean, damp paper towel to remove any left-over bubbles or soap suds on the surface of your carpet. This method can be repeated several times if your shampoo stain is stubborn or if any remnants still remain.
  • Rinse out your sponge with clean water, wring it out thoroughly, and then soak up as much of the sudsy soapy water from your carpet as possible. This will be a “rinse” stage for your carpet because you want to remove all traces of soap from the area.
  • Pour some distilled white vinegar into a spray bottle and saturate the stained area with it. This is an important step because any left-over dishwashing liquid in your carpet could potentially react badly with the vinegar you are about to use, resulting in a chemical reaction that will discolor your carpet! By using straight distilled white vinegar, you break up the soap molecules and lift them off of your carpet’s fibers.
  • Blot (don’t rub) the vinegar into your carpet with a clean cloth to absorb as much of it as possible. The more you blot, the less risk that your carpet will discolor if there are any remaining suds or shampoo bits in it.

Treat The Odor With Baking Soda ​

Pour baking soda onto the stained area in your carpet and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before vacuuming up the residue. The baking soda will suck up any shampoo odors that are left behind in the fibers of your carpet, leaving an even more pleasant smell in the area.

  • After 5-10 minutes, use your vacuum cleaner to remove all of the baking soda from the carpet.
  • After the area is clean, use a fan to circulate air and help your carpet dry faster.

Vacuum Any Loose Dirt And Debris From The Shampoo Spill ​

Using a wet-dry vacuum can help you remove any leftover shampoo from your carpet. Spray a bit of the vinegar mixture onto the stain to break up any last remaining sudsy residue, then vacuum it up before it has time to dry into your carpet. If you don’t have a wet-dry vacuum that you can use, you can also use your vacuum’s hose attachment to suck up any residual shampoo from your carpet. Simply fit the hose attachment over an empty bucket, turn it on, and let the suction do all the work for you.

Let Your Carpet Air Dry ​

Once you blot out any residual moisture, make sure to let your carpet air dry before you continue on with the next steps of this process. Don’t use a towel to blot out moisture, as it might actually push the shampoo deeper into the fibers of your carpet and make it more difficult to remove.

Once your carpet is completely dry, vacuum up any remaining baking soda particles and then treat any remaining stains with carpet shampoo and a sponge or cloth to re-clean your carpet. It’s important that you avoid walking on the area for at least 12-24 hours to give it time to dry.

Final Thoughts ​

Follow these tips and tricks, and you’ll have a clean carpet in no time! Those shampoo stains will be a thing of the past before you know it. While these instructions are written for shampoo stains, you can also use this process to clean out any soap residue that might be left behind on your carpet. When in doubt, it’s always best to consult a local professional. At J&M Reliable, we’re happy to help you with any issues that you might be having with your carpet.

We're Here To Help! ​

If you need additional assistance, we’re happy to help out. Click here to reach out and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible. We look forward to hearing from you and making sure that you have a clean and healthy carpet!

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