Dear Sara:

I accidentally washed a tube of lipstick in a load of whites. It is all over everything. I tried rewashing it with OxiClean, to no avail. I tried spot cleaning and gave up because there are hundreds of spots on each article. Any ideas? -- N.M., Wisconsin
Dear N.M.:

Try shaving cream, vodka or hair spray. Blot stains using a white washcloth so you can see how much of the stain is lifting, then launder as usual. If that doesn't work well enough, try blotting with glycerin, rubbing alcohol or denatured alcohol, then apply Dawn dishwashing liquid and launder as usual. A fellow reader, Meg, emailed a tip recently that worked on lipstick. She suggested Carbona stain remover products. Carbona can be purchased online at

Dear Sara:

I once had a recipe for a bread starter that was kept in the fridge and fed with instant potatoes every four days or so, then made into bread. Do you have this recipe or another starter bread recipe? -- Lee, Mississippi
Dear Lee: Here's a link to a potato flake starter recipe:
And here's a recipe for Amish Friendship bread (no potato flakes) that you might enjoy, too:
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar

For bread:
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 small box instant vanilla pudding mix
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins, chocolate chips or nuts, optional

Cinnamon sugar:
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon

For starter:
Dissolve yeast in warm water in a deep glass, plastic container or half-gallon zipper-type bag. Stir in milk, flour and sugar. Beat until smooth. Cover. Your first batch of starter has fresh yeast, so skip 10-day directions and go directly to splitting your starter. Don't refrigerate or use a metal spoon.
Day 1: Begin or receive starter
Day 2: Stir with wooden spoon (or squish baggie)
Day 3: Repeat day 2
Day 4: Repeat day 3
Day 5: Add 1 cup sugar, 1 cup flour, 1 cup milk
Day 6: Stir with wooden spoon (or squish baggie)
Day 7: Repeat day 6
Day 8: Do nothing
Day 9: Do nothing
Day 10: Add 1 cup sugar, 1 cup flour and 1 cup milk
Put 1 cup of starter in each of three containers. Give two away and keep one. This will begin their day 1.
For bread:
To the remaining batter, add vegetable oil, sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, eggs, milk, vanilla-pudding mix, cinnamon and salt. Beat until well blended. Add 1 cup raisins, chocolate chips or nuts if desired. Grease two loaf pans well, and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, coating bottom well. Pour batter into bread pans and sprinkle remaining cinnamon sugar onto tops of loaves. Bake at 325 degrees F for 1 hour. -- submitted by Jeannie, Kansas

photo by mulan