How to Remove Nail Polish Stains - Save your Clothes

How to Remove Nail Polish Stains - Save your Clothes


4 minute read

How to Remove Nail Polish Stains

You've just finished doing an at home manicure and your nails look fabulous - and that's when you notice. Your favorite pair of jeans have a bright nail polish stain! Yes, it's happened too many times to most of us and the anguish of ruining your favorite clothes is all to familiar. But fear not - We've got the cleaning tips you need to help you get that pesky nail polish stain out of your favorite clothes, couch, or any other fabric.

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Lift Away the Excess

To remove nail polish stains, you should start by removing any excess that hasn't soaked in. To do this successfully and without pushing the stain deeper into your fabric use something dull like cardboard or paper to gently lift as much off of it while not scrubbing which will make removal harder for yourself!

Test the Fabric First

Before you begin scrubbing away at a nail polish stain, always test on an inside seam to make sure it won't harm the fabric of your favorite clothes. Delicate fabrics can usually tolerate cleaners, but find scrubbing difficult and may cause damage. Here's how to go gentle while getting rid of all that pesky stain from hems down deep in those seams where nothing else seems able to reach - with just some supplies around our house: laundry soap(s), cotton swabs for reaching into tight spots like underneath buttons/studs as well nail polish remover.

Start with Soap and Water

It's a good idea to treat any remaining spot quickly with stain fighter or an oily soap before it has time to spread. Gently work the solution from outside edge toward center, replacing swab when full of color and getting rid if possible without making situation worse! This is a good start if you've stained any fabric such as cotton, linen or denim.

how to remove nail polish stains soap

After you rinse the stain off, it's important to make sure that all of the solution has been removed from your fabric. To do this efficiently and ensure nothing remains behind in case more problems arise later on down the line with future cleanings. 

Bring out the Acetone - with Caution

If you’re still finding stubborn marks remaining after treating the stain with soap and water, it may be time to pull out the nail polish remover (acetone). Place some paper towel on the underside of the stain and use a cotton swab to gently dab on nail polish remover. The paper towel will absorb the polish color and stop the stain from spreading when the acetone touches it. Dab at the stain with the nail polish remover until it is gone, and then treat the stain with soap and water again. 

IMPORTANT - If you’re cleaning delicate fabrics such as silk, it may be a good idea to use a non-acetone polish remover in order to prevent any damage to the fabric.

Chill and Dry

In case the fabric is delicate or there's a lot of polish, use tweezers to gently lift it along edges and avoid tearing. How much you can remove depends on the type of fabric and size of the stain. If you're worried about the stain spreading, take extra caution in removing any unwanted blurs with this simple trick - an ice pack will help chill the stain area fast and drying it will allow you to contain the spill while also minimizing further damage.

Nail Polish Stains on Carpet

When you notice a stain on your carpet, the first thing to do is blot it with some rubbing alcohol or cotton balls. You can also apply detergent and lukewarm water using paper towels so that all signs of this unfortunate occurrence are removed from sight! As for any methodical removal system; stay away from scrubbing as this may cause fibers within carpets to break down too much without necessarily getting rid of the stain and holding on to the polish permanently. 

Nail Polish Stains on Leather and Suede

Got a nail polish stain on your favorite leather bag or jacket? Odorless and colorfast vinegar or rubbing alcohol work well for removing nail polish on leather as it won't damage the material like other solvents might. Avoid using acetone as this can damage leather or fabrics made with acetate.

how to remove nail polish stains leather

Bring in the Pros

If you’re still having trouble getting out that nail polish stain, or are afraid of damaging your favorite clothes, it may be best to take them to your local dry cleaners for some professional help. Most dry cleaners deal with spills and stains of all sorts and will most likely be able to save your favorite piece of clothing and have them looking good as new. 

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