Best upholstery cleaner – 8 brilliant buys to tackle tough stains

Find the best upholstery cleaner to give your carpets, rugs, furniture and curtains a refresh this year

On the hunt for the best upholstery cleaner to add to your cleaning cupboard? Smart idea. Whether it's a muddy pet, clumsy children or for general use for a clean home, a simple spray and wipe of any of these solutions will turn your carpet and upholstery from drab to fab looking. Saving you the need to spend money on replacing your furniture, a rug, some curtains or even an entire carpet, and the environment from unnecessary waste.

Not just for targeting stains including wine, coffee, mud plus more, an upholstery cleaner will also give a new lease of life to your belongings. An upholstery cleaner usually comes in spray form, and some can be used manually whilst others you could use along with a carpet cleaning machine for a deeper clean. Simply spray the area, leave to work its magic, and then wipe it away. In some cases, you might want to vacuum over the stain to remove any residue from the spray, but yes: it's that easy!

So if you want to refresh your sofa, a sofa bed, your favourite armchair, or an area of carpet that's had a spill, just keep scrolling for our five favourite options. There's no doubt in our minds that an upholstery cleaner will soon become a cupboard staple for you, whether you live in a busy household or not. These sprays are undeniably handy when it comes to accidents, and you'll thank us later after buying one just in case.  For more of the best cleaning products, see our ultimate guide to stock your cupboards with the best sprays and solutions in 2024.

The best upholstery cleaners

Why you can trust Ideal Home Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Astonish Premium Carpet and Upholstery Shampoo with Ideal Home approved logo

(Image credit: Astonish)

1. Astonish Premium Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner

The best upholstery cleaner you can buy

We've tried, tested and we love this upholstery cleaner. You can use it on pretty much anything from long-pile rugs to short-pile rugs, linen sofas, clothes and more. It also boasts odour-neutralising technology, should you be cleaning something that's smelly. This upholstery cleaner is, in our eyes, a cupboard staple and we use it at least once a week. It really is impressive.Simply spray it on the area you need to clean, let it soak in and dap it with a cloth. Then, if you have time, vacuum over the area to remove any excess to protect pets or children.

This spray upholstery cleaner is vegan and cruelty-free, while it comes in a recyclable bottle.

Dr. Beckmann Carpet Stain Remover

(Image credit: Dr. Beckmann)

2. Dr. Beckmann's Carpet Stain Remover

The best upholstery cleaner for carpets

Dr. Beckmann's Carpet Stain Remover, hence the name, is our top pick of cleaner for carpets. Why? It features a built-in brush for targeting tough stains and specific areas, while the solution itself is both odour neutralising and powerful, so it can tackle anything from red wine to pet urine and more. The built-in brush makes an easy job of banishing both new and dried in stains, while it's surprisingly soft on your carpet – and upholstery. Not just for use at home, but you could also use this for car cleaning, or you can obviously put it to use on a sofa, armchair or whatever else.

This upholstery cleaner will start working its magic after just three minutes. To use, shake the bottle, place the head firmly on the stain, squeeze until liquid comes out and lightly scrub. Leave to work for 3 minutes, then pat dry with a cloth. Simple!

Ecover Stain Remover

(Image credit: Ecover)

3. Ecover Stain Remover

The best eco-friendly upholstery cleaner

The Ecover Stain Remover is our top eco-friendly pick. This stain remover boasts a built-in applicator to make removing stains an easy process, while it can be used on everything from upholstery to rugs and clothing.

This eco-conscious spray requires you to dampen the area before use, but other than that it's easy to apply – squeeze some of the solution out through the brush head, work it into the stain and then wash away or clean with a damp cloth.

The Ecover stain remover is plant-based vegan and cruelty-free. It's also made using biodegradable ingredients. The bottle itself is made of 100 per cent recycled plastic, too. It's not recommended for use on wool, silk and other delicate fabrics.

Vanish Carpet Cleaner + Upholstery

(Image credit: Vanish)

4. Vanish Carpet Care

The best upholstery cleaner for large areas

The Vanish Carpet Cleaner + Upholstery is our top pick if you are cleaning or reviving a large area – perhaps an entire rug, a whole sofa – since it's a large bottle and it's very easy to use. You can use this cleaner on carpet and upholstery, while it's recommended for use in high-traffic areas such as hallways. It also works to neutralise odours at the same time.

How to use this powerful spray? Simply shake well and spray on the area you'd like to clean, work it in with a brush, then get your vacuum out to remove any dried powder.

This Vanish upholstery cleaner comes in a large bottle that ought to last a while, and this bottle is even widely recycled, too.

Stardrops White Vinegar with Ideal Home approved logo

(Image credit: Stardrops)

5. Stardrops Vinegar Spray

The best cheap upholstery cleaner

White vinegar for cleaning upholstery? Stay with us on this one. Yes, white vinegar is pretty versatile so can be used around the home to clean anything from surfaces to windows, and now, to clean upholstery. It also works to neutralise odours and it can work on the toughest of stains – especially those made from pets. Also, since it’s just vinegar, it’s safe to use around children and pets. You might want to open a few windows, though.

To use this vinegar spray, dab the area in which you are cleaning to remove any excess liquid or debris, spray an ample amount of vinegar on it and leave it to do its magic. You may want to dab dry but it should dry on its own. Obviously, you can then spray it with some sort of air freshener to remove the slight vinegar smell.

Simple Solution Extreme Pet Stain and Odour Remover

(Image credit: Simple Solution)

6. Simple Solution Extreme Pet Stain and Odour Remover

The best upholstery cleaner for pet owners

One for all of the pet owners out there, this spray can tackle stains and banish odours within minutes. It's obviously safe to use around your furry friend, while you can spray it on anything from carpets to upholstery, clothes and even bedding and blankets. Use it to give a new lease of life to items areas of your home that your pet enjoys a little too much, and to prevent them from going back and repeating the behaviour.

Target the area you need to clean and switch the nozzle to what you desire. From foam for tough, embedded stains, steam for odours and mist to cover a large area and clean surface stains. For urine and faeces stains, use the foam setting and leave for 5 minutes to dry, then blot if need be and vacuum the area. For odours, use the stream option and cover the area 2x, vacuuming afterwards and once dry. To tackle a blood or vomit stain, use steam or mist and generously cover the area. Blot to remove the stain and repeat if necessary, before vacuuming once dry.

Ecozone Carpet Shampoo Solution

(Image credit: Ecozone)

7. Ecozone Carpet Shampoo Solution

The best gentle upholstery cleaner

Use this Ecozone solution to give your carpet(s) or rug a gentle – yet new – lease of life. Use it manually or with a machine, and it can also be used to target spot stains. It's cruelty-free and vegan, as well as anti-bacterial for your peace of mind. This plant-based formula will be kind to your surfaces, all whilst removing surface stains with little elbow grease required.

For gentle spot stains, dilute 10:1 and apply directly to the stain. Lightly scrub with a cloth and wipe residue away once the stain has disappeared. To use with a carpet cleaning machine, dilute the solution 8:1 and follow your machine's instructions.

HG Stain Spray Extra Strong

(Image credit: HG)

8. HG Stain Spray Extra Strong

The best tough upholstery cleaner

What this upholstery cleaning spray lacks in looks it makes up for in power. Great for cleaning anything from red wine to coffee, mud and even grease, it's aptly called 'Extra Strong Spray' for a good reason. As always, make sure you do a patch test somewhere inconspicuous before use, but most of all: prepare to be wowed.

Simply just spray this solution on the spot that needs to go, and leave it to work for around 5 minutes. Wipe the released dirt off with a clean cloth and ta-da!

What is the best upholstery cleaner?

The best upholstery cleaner you can buy is the Astonish Premium Carpet and Upholstery Shampoo. You can use it on everything from carpets to sofas and even clothes, plus it's vegan, cruelty-free and comes in a recyclable bottle. It also smells lovely and banishes odours – a handy bonus. Just remember to always test an upholstery cleaner on an inconspicuous area first, just in case.

Read next: How to clean upholstery? our top tips...

Annie Collyer
Deputy Ecommerce Editor

Annie is Ideal Home's Deputy Ecommerce Editor. With four years of eCommerce experience under her belt, you can find her shopping words of wisdom on Real Homes, Gardeningetc, Livingetc, Homes & Gardens and Woman & Home. When she's not planning ahead or curating deals for Amazon Prime Day or Black Friday, you can find Annie testing a range of products in her South London home, from reed diffusers to candles, BBQs, mattresses and even a few vacuum cleaners.