Removing Permanent Marker

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated June 5, 2017)

Have you ever walked into your kitchen one day, to find your beautiful wood table (or cabinets) marked up with permanent marker? If you have children, then chances are you have at least once in your life. This common problem no longer needs to be a death sentence for your favorite wood table, countertops, or cabinetry.

Removing permanent marker, while sometimes a little difficult, doesn't have to be impossible. All you need to do is use one of these methods, and pretty soon you will have a marker free surface once again.

  • Hair spray. If you have a little hair spray around the home, then you can quickly remove a permanent marker stain. All you need to do is spray a little bit of the hair spray onto the permanent marker, let it sit for a minute, and then blot it off. You may need to repeat the process to remove all of the marker, but you should begin to see immediate results.
  • Soft Scrub. Surprisingly, Soft Scrub cleanser can help remove permanent marker. However, this cleaning material should only be used on a laminate, or stone countertop, as it may remove the paint or finish on a wood based material. Follow the directions as listed on the back of the bottle, and do not press too hard when scrubbing. Otherwise, you may end up with a "shiny" spot.
  • Rubbing alcohol. Rubbing alcohol, also known as methylated spirits, can help remove many kinds of stains. However, care should be taken when using this cleaning solution. Since the rubbing alcohol may remove some paint or finish on wood, you should only use it when mixed with another material. Try creating a mixture of 1 part rubbing alcohol to 3 parts water to begin with. Test it out on an inconspicuous location first, and if there is no adverse reaction, begin to use like any other cleaner. Never pour the methylated spirit directly onto a painted, or finished surface, unless you are wanting to remove that paint or finish. Instead, place a little bit onto a sponge, towel, or washcloth and gently rub out the permanent marker.
  • Magic Eraser. Mr. Clean has a wonderful product called the Magic Eraser which can remove just about any kind of stain, from just about any kind of surface. All you need to do is get it a little damp, and begin scrubbing away. It may require a little bit of elbow grease, but you can quickly remove the permanent marker. Best of all, this product will not remove any paint from your wood work while you use it.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...



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