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How to Remove Old Ink Stains

Ink stains happen when a pen breaks or leaks onto a porous surface. Sometimes this goes unnoticed until after the stain is dry. Although this makes the stain more difficult to remove, it can be cleaned using household items. Hairspray is an effective method of removing ink stains.

Ink stains happen when a pen breaks or leaks onto a porous surface. Sometimes this goes unnoticed until after the stain is dry. Although this makes the stain more difficult to remove, it can be cleaned using household items. Hairspray is an effective method of removing ink stains. Avoid drying the stained material in a hot dryer until you are sure the stain is completely gone.

  1. Place a towel under the fabric.

  2. Saturate the stain with an alcohol-based hairspray. Do not use an aerosol hairspray. It is better to use more hairspray than less. Let the hairspray sit for five minutes.

  3. Blot the stain with a clean cloth until the stain is removed.

  4. Wash the stain in cold water with your usual laundry soap.

  5. Hang the fabric to dry.

  6. Check the fabric for any signs of ink. Repeat the treatment if necessary.

  7. Tip

    Catch stains as soon as possible to prevent permanent stains.

About the Author

Shara JJ Cooper graduated with a bachelor's degree in journalism in 2000, and has worked professionally ever since. She has a passion for community journalism, but likes to mix it up by writing for a variety of publications. Cooper is the owner/editor of the Boundary Sentinel, a web-based newspaper.