Tide to Go

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Tide To Go The Stains Did Not Go!

May 22, 2005
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:small, easy to carry, looks like a marker, pleasant hardly noticeable smell

Cons:did not work well for me

The Bottom Line: The Bottom Line is stained! And its going to stay stained if this is the only product available.

Have you ever eaten a hamburger or hotdog only to have the mustard and ketchup fall on your clothing? Or eat salad and have the salad dressing liberally decorate your outfit? Tide has introduced a product called Tide To Go that is designed to remove fresh food and drink stains.


Tide to Go looks and “writes” like a marker. The product measures 5 1/4" long and is 5/8" in diameter. The orange cap removes to reveal a white tip, and the cap can attach to the back of the “marker” barrel. This tube holds .338 fluid ounces (10 ml) of Tide to Go clear liquid. Since Tide is known by its bright orange color packaging, this marker is also bright orange with blue and white lettering.

This product comes packaged in a blistercard covered with clear plastic that displays the Tide To Go marker. The package has instructions on the cardboard back as well as an instruction sheet inside with the marker. To help release the product from the packaging, the manufacturer has perforated the cardboard behind the back of the marker.

Instructions for Use

I read all the instructions before using this product. I read them three times! It seemed too easy.

1. After spilling food or drink on your clothing, blot or remove the excess spill.

2. Uncap the Tide To Go marker. Press the marker tip onto the stain. You have to press the marker in order to release the clear liquid. Sometimes it requires several presses of the marker to release enough stain solution to affect the stain.

3. Rub (do not press) the marker tip across the stain. An illustration shows the marker being moved in a circular direction. The stain should remove.

Note: Tide To Go is for removal of fresh stains only. It is not a stain pre-treatment.

In the instructions, it says that Tide To Go works well on: tomato juice, ketchup, BBQ sauce, grape juice and coffee. It is not designed to work on ink, blood or grease stains.

My Experiences

I’ll skip to the bottom line ... it’s a waste of money. Now I’m sure you want to know why.

I wanted to be fair testing this product, so I tried it on a variety of material with an assortment of freshly created stains. My test fabrics include: a 100% cotton white fabric in a floral print (tightly woven), a 100% cotton brown fabric in a floral print (loose weave), a green single knit (such as a t-shirt fabric), and a 100% polyester machine-washable lining fabric in black.

Now for the stains. I tested Tide To Go on: mustard, ketchup, red wine & olive oil salad dressing, sweet & sour sauce, mayonnaise, chocolate soy milk and grape juice.

I spilled all of the above food and drink on the fabrics, not mixing any of the “stains”. As the instructions stated, I wiped away the excess spill. Since I would most likely use this product at home, at work, or in a restaurant ... I wiped the excess spill with paper towels and napkins. Then I pressed the Tide To Go pen against the stain to release the clear liquid stain solution. I rubbed the tip of the pen gently over the stain. When the stain did not release or disappear, I released more solution from the pen ... and then more solution ... and even more solution.

The fabric that cleaned best is the 100% polyester machine-washable lining fabric. I believe it cleaned well because the stain did not absorb into the fabric. The stain lay on top of the polyester and mostly blotted clean before I applied the Tide To Go.

On the other fabrics, none of the stains completely disappeared. In fact, the fabrics look a mess! I would have done better putting a little Dawn dishwashing liquid on a paper towel with some water to rub the stain clean (as I usually do). The grease-fighting formula in Dawn does a good job of emergency cleaning.

However, Tide To Go is meant to fit in a purse, car glove compartment, knapsack, totebag, briefcase, or drawer. It’s small enough to fit in a pocket. The only problem is it does not work when it’s put to the test.

The mustard stain (French’s mustard) is a vibrant yellow blot on the white floral and knit fabrics. It is a little less yellow on the brown fabric, but I think the coloration of the fabric and the loose weave help camouflage most of the stains I inflicted on it. All of these stains are visible even though the stain solution has long dried. Tide To Go did fade the ketchup, salad dressing, sweet & sour, mayonnaise, chocolate milk and grape juice stains. But the stains are still very visible. If I had to choose stains that are less visible than the others, it would be the chocolate milk and mayonnaise stains.

The fabrics I tested did not fade from the Tide To Go liquid. I find it interesting that the product packaging says that if stains do not come out, then pre-treat the stain before washing. The fabrics definitely need pre-treating!

Since Tide To Go is clearly labeled as an "Instant Stain Remover" ... I’m very disappointed in this product. The manufacturer even says that it works well on ketchup and grape juice stains. Not for me.

Cautions & Ingredients

This product packaging contains the usual warnings such as keep out reach of children. In case of eye contact, rinse thoroughly with water and to seek medical attention if eye irritation persists.

The manufacturer states that the product is safe on most colorfast, machine washable and dry cleanable fabrics. The package also states that some fabrics “may be susceptible to color change”. It’s a good idea to test this product an inconspicuous area on fabric before use.

Tide To Go contains no phosphates and is made from biodegradable cleaning agents.


I received this Tide To Go product free of charge as part of a pre-launch campaign. In exchange, I agreed to give my honest no-holds-barred opinion of the product.

This product will sell in a single-pack for $2.99 or in a 3-pack for $6.99.


Do I feel this product lived up to the advertising hype? No. Did it work for me? No. Though I will say some of the stains did fade. Is it better to use this product rather than nothing? That is for you to decide. For me, a drop of Dawn dishwashing liquid and water work well at releasing stains. The only problem is that I don’t usually carry Dawn dishwashing liquid into a restaurant. So I would choose to use nothing. I do not recommend this product and will not buy it.

I hope you found this review useful.

Enjoy your day,

Additional Information

Procter & Gamble
Cincinnati, OH 45202

Toll-free Phone # 800-879-8433

Please read my other reviews:

Clorox BathWand

Clorox Disinfecting Wipes

Windex Wipes for Glass & Surface

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Duo

Mr. Clean Magic Reach Starter Kit

Ultra Dawn Dishwashing Soap – Apple Blossom scent

Hefty Serve’n Store Disposable Tableware

Ziploc Containers with Snap ‘n Seal Lids

Pyrex Digital Timer

Cush Pillow for Comfort & Stress Relief

Curtis Radio/CD Portable Boombox

Copyright 2005 Dawn L. Stewart

Recommend this product? No

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