So you or most likely your kid got dry erase marker all over your favorite clothes, and although it may sound like a nightmare, we are here to tell you that you are not alone, it has happened before and you there’s still light at the end of the tunnel. You are in the right place cause we’ll be sharing all we know on how to get dry erase marker out of fabric.
You’ve probably used your erase marker hundreds of times, but there’s always that one time that without even notice all of the sudden, you have a stain. And no matter how much you love your dry erase marker, it’s a whole other story when we get it stuck on our clothes or other surfaces.
Normally you want to avoid this at all costs because although is not an impossible task, you’ll be spending minutes of your precious life scrubbing and washing it off. If it already happened then welcome to the club. Luckily, there’s a number of removal methods/techniques that will help you get rid of annoying dry erase marker stains stuck on your fabrics.
What is a dry erase marker?
More likely thank not, we’ve all used at some point a dry erase markers in the past, the first time it feels like magic; a marker that erases like a pencil, what a delight right! That’s until it gets on your clothing.
First, a little history, dry erase markers and boards became popular in the mid-1990’s, and were created as an alternative to the chalky, messy blackboards we used for over a century. Dry erase markers are better than chalk in a number of ways.
Dry erase markers were made for non-porous surfaces, which is why they work well on mirrors, metals and glass. The ink in dry erase markers is very similar to the ink in permanent markers and unfortunately it can stain porous surfaces just as easily, if you aren’t careful.
What is the difference between dry erase markers and permanent markers?
The ink is made of color pigments, a chemical solvent and a polymer or “release agent.” The difference between dry erase markers and permanent markers is the kind of polymer used. Permanent markers use an acrylic polymer that helps the pigment stick to surfaces, while dry erase markers use an oily silicone polymer.
The silicone polymer makes dry erase marker ink slippery and prevents the colored pigment of the marker to come in direct contact with the surface. This is why dry erase markers can be wiped off of non-porous surfaces so easily. Also, the solvent in the marker (usually an alcohol) helps the ink dry quickly, which attaches the ink to the surface, not absorb it. As a result, dry ink is easiest to wipe off, since the ink is in place.
Ways to remove dry erase marker from clothes
Although dry ink from your dry erase marker is the easiest to get rid off, is different when you have to deal with it being on fabrics.
With the following cleaning methods, you’ll surely be successful in removing annoying dry erase marker stains without much hassle.
For stubborn stains
Murphy’s Oil Soap
- Begin by folding the towel and place it so that the marker stained area is resting above the towel. The towel will help to keep the liquids from draining through to the other side of the garment, and to provide a surface for the marker to transfer to.
- Apply a small amount of Murphy’s Oil Soap onto the marker stain area.
- Blot the area with a clean cloth. As you are blotting, the marker should transfer from the peace of fabric to the cloth.
- Turn/fold the cloth often so that a clean surface is always being used. It may be necessary to turn the cloth inside of the shirt as well.
- Use an old toothbrush, or other soft brush, to gently scrub the area.
- Once the stain is completely gone, wash the garment as you would regularly.
Find Murphy’s Oil Soap on Amazon.
How to get dry erase marker out of fabric – For light stains
If the dry marker stains aren’t too intense, then instead of oil soap, you can use hand sanitizer or alcohol. Just follow the same steps.
- Place several paper towels on a table. Place the stained clothing, stain side down, on the towels. The stain should be directly on top of the paper towels.
- Apply rubbing alcohol around the stained area that you see from the back of the clothing, using a sponge. Then dab alcohol straight onto the stain.
- Continue rubbing the stain, change the paper towels when you feel this are dry. What you want it for the paper towels to completely absorb the stain. Continue until you can’t see the stain any more.
- Rinse the garment thoroughly with clean water.
- Wash and launder the garment as usual.
Find rubbing alcohol on Amazon.
The same hairspray you use for your hair, has proven to be successful in removing dry erase marker stains from most fabrics.
- Spray a small amount of hairspray on an edge of the stain and make sure the stained area isn’t touching the unstained area as you don’t want to spread the stain.
- Use a clean white rag to wipe away the ink. It may take to put on some effort, but it usually removes the stain.
- Wash in a regular wash when done to get spray residue out.
You may want to use a cheaper hairspray for this. Find hairspray on Amazon.
For this method it is recommended to use white vinegar.
- Get an absorbent towel and place it under the stained clothing.
2. Dab a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a clean sponge. Then, dab the sponge on the stain. Blot at the stain until it has faded and be careful not to smear the stain.
3. Mix warm water and a cup of white vinegar in a bowl big enough to submerge the garment.
4. Leave the garment in the sink for about 15 minutes. After this point, the stain should not be visible anymore.
5. Wash in the laundry as usual.
Find white vinegar on Amazon.
How to get dry erase marker out of fabric -Tips to keep in mind
- You can sometimes remove dry erase marker by pre-treating the garment with a stain remover, and then washing the garment as per usual.
- When using alcohol on a stain, rubbing the stain could cause it to smear.