How Tos & Expert Tips

How to Clean a White Christmas Tree

A white Christmas tree adds an interesting and unique element to your holiday display. However, its immaculate color means you need to take care of it with meticulous attention for you to enjoy it for many seasons.

Cami of Tidbits' Denali White Christmas Tree
Photos from Cami and Marci of Tidbits

Find out what can cause discoloration on your white Christmas tree, how to prevent it, and what to do in case it happens.

Why Did My White Christmas Tree Turn Yellow?

There are several factors that might have contributed to your white artificial Christmas tree turning yellow. It could be that the tree wasn’t cleaned and packed properly before storing, or it was kept in a location that accumulates dust and moisture.

Photos from Courtney of French Country Cottage

Natural fading of white plastic also occurs due to a chemical reaction, or it could simply be a result of normal wear and tear when used over the years.

How to Prevent Your White Christmas Tree from Yellowing

One of the best ways to help keep your white Christmas tree pristine is to clean and store it properly at the end of every holiday season. This will reduce the amount of dust it can accumulate and ensure that the tree is protected from any damage.

Photo from Erin of My Texas House

  • To clean your white Christmas tree before storage, go over the tree and its branch tips with a feather duster or a damp rag.
  • You can also use the vacuum to get some dust off, but be sure to use a soft attachment and use a low setting to prevent accidentally removing any needles.
  • Once the tree is dry and clean, wrap it up in gift tissue paper.
  • Keep your tree in the storage bag it came in. If it does not have a bag, a Balsam Hill tree storage bag is extra convenient.
  • Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for storage if there are any.
  • Choose a cool, dry area in your home where you can store your tree.

How to Remove Yellowing From a White Christmas Tree

If your tree does become discolored in storage, there are still ways to bring back its beauty. Designer Dagmar Obert recommends the following tips on how to clean a white Christmas tree turned yellow.

  1. When it comes to cleaning a white Christmas tree that has turned yellow, it’s always best to check the care instructions that came with your tree. Otherwise, the safest option would be to reach out to the customer service team of your tree manufacturer.
  2. A simple trick is to leave out your tree in direct sunlight for a few hours. If the discoloration is subtle, a bit of sun can be enough to bleach the stains out and return the tree to its former glory. Note that this can be most easily done during the sunnier days of spring or summer.
  3. If sunshine alone doesn’t do the trick, mix 3 parts white vinegar with 1 part water in a large spray bottle and spritz it on the affected branches of your tree. Then, leave your tree in direct sunlight for at least 12 hours. The vinegar will react with the sunlight and help bleach the branches back to white. A brief word of caution on cleaning methods though: Most stores void the warranty when a Christmas tree is intentionally altered or gets damaged due to misuse. Do not bleach your tree while it’s still under warranty.

As with any other home décor, prevention is the best step to maintain the beauty of your white tree so you can enjoy it for many Christmases to come.


  1. Is there something you can spray on the tee like a clear coat leave the tree together wrap and store it

  2. Hi Sarah,

    Is there a spray paint you can get to just spray on the white specifically safe for artifical trees ?


    Just stick with the green trees, my daughter white tree is Always stored in its original box, and still has dirty greyish branches on a couple of leaves, we spray with white spray paint, and white snow, that did trick.

  4. Kristy Batdorf Reply

    I purchased a white Christmas tree several years ago. There are two types of branches. One seems to have glitter, these are turning yellow. I do dust and store tree in the tree bag it came with.
    What can I do two yellow branches? I believe it is out of warranty.

    • Thank you for reaching out to Balsam Hill, Kristy. We are sorry to hear about the discoloration of your white Christmas tree. For us to properly assist you with your concern, please send us an email at so we can pull up the order details for the tree and see if it is still covered by warranty.

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