If you’re a red fan, you will have to deal with a red wine spill or stain at some point (probably several points, in fact). It’s not the permanent nightmare you might fear, though, especially if you act promptly and you know what you’re doing.

Here’s five (almost) sure-fire ways to become whiter than white again.

Salt – it’s not a myth

You need to be quick off the mark here, but this is great for carpets. Blot out as much of the wine as you can with a kitchen towel, then cover the wine stain with as much salt as it takes to completely obscure the color. Let the salt absorb the liquid and then dry, before vacuuming it all up.

Dawn and hydrogen peroxide

If you’ve spilled red wine on clothes, mix equal parts of Dawn dishwasher and hydrogen peroxide, before pouring the mixture onto the stain. You’ll see the stain start to fade almost immediately. Give it 10-15 minutes, then wash the item of clothing as normal. You should only use this method on lighter colored clothes as hydrogen peroxide has a bleaching effect.

Boiling water

This is useful for tablecloths and table linens. Get a large glass bowl and place the stained portion of the cloth over the bowl and hold it taut with a large rubber band. Pour the boiling water over the fabric from around a foot in height – this should remove a lot of the stain – then launder as normal.

White vinegar and laundry detergent

This is another great method for lighter clothes – douse the stain in white vinegar, which changes the colour of red and purple pigments. Then apply liquid detergent, rub in and launder as normal.

Good old-fashioned bleach

You can’t use this on all white fabrics – make sure the material is tough enough to withstand the onslaught. If it is, then this is the best way to remove a red wine stain. Soak the item in a bleach solution for at least ten minutes then wash it in hot water.