How To Remove Permanent Marker Marks from Household Surfaces

Permanent markers are meant to stay permanent on any surface. Your children can get excited and use these markers on your walls, tables and sofas. It is simply their way of exploring and being creative. It will take some patience on your part to teach them where they can write and probably more patience to remove the permanent marker marks in your home. Give yourself time and try these various ways.

  • Use rubbing alcohol and dry paper towels. Place a few drops of regular isopropyl alcohol on the household surface. Use your disposable kitchen towel and place it on top of the area. The permanent marker ink should slowly transfer to the paper towel. Get as much as you can on the paper towel before you even try to rub it. Rub a small part, but if it starts to spread, then try another option. Rubbing alcohol may not get all of it out, but it can get rid of most of it.
  • Spray hairspray on affected walls and fabrics. Hairspray also contains alcohol along with other chemicals. Use the extra hold version of any brand of hairspray. Let it set for a minute or two. Rub it with a clean white rag. Keep doing this until you get the permanent marker mark out.
  • Try acetone or paint thinner. This is even a stronger chemical that almost guarantees the removal of permanent marker marks on any surface. However, it can also ruin the surface by discoloring it. On sofas, a white spot may appear exactly where you placed the acetone or paint thinner. On walls, it may also remove the paint on the wall. Wallpapers are safe with acetone and paint thinner. Never use thinner on marble or granite since it will ruin the surface.
  • Combine toothpaste and baking soda to remove marks on marbles. Create your own paste with toothpaste and baking soda in a shallow container by mixing them thoroughly. Apply the paste on the affected area and leave it for a few minutes. Wipe it off and rub the area. Clean it with regular marble cleaners afterward.
  • Mix 1 part distilled white vinegar and 1 part distilled water and spray on glass. Use a newspaper to clean the glass with this mixture and scrub hard. The permanent marker mark will eventually get out. You can also use this mixture on tiles and kitchen sinks. Try it on small parts of the sofa before you apply it on the affected area. It may leave stain but it will get the permanent marker mark out. You can address the vinegar stain with other cleaning agents for the sofa. Vinegar should not be too difficult to remove.
  • Add some lemon juice on your regular cleaning agent. Whether you clean a carpet, wall, sofa or kitchen counter just add some freshly squeezed lemon juice. Clean the surface as you normally would but scrub with a little more pressure on the affected area.

The best way to avoid having to clean permanent marker marks is to keep permanent markers away from your child’s reach. Keep them in drawers and provide your children with an area where they can freely write or draw anything.


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