Clean the wood with a high-quality wood cleaner. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for using the product as application directions will vary between products. Cleaning with a wood cleaner may lighten the permanent marker slightly.
Rub a pink art eraser over the permanent marker stain. Rub gently in the direction of the wood grain until you notice the marker lifting. Avoid rubbing too hard or the finish on the wood may become damaged. Wipe down the affected wood with a slightly damp rag.
Spread a moderate coating of plain white toothpaste over the stain if the marker is still there. Rub the toothpaste into the wood with your finger. Avoid using gel toothpaste or those with any abrasives or bleaching agents. Let the toothpaste sit on the wood for a few minutes.
Rub the toothpaste into the wood with a soft rag, working in the direction of the grain. Apply moderate pressure and continue rubbing until the marker has lifted from the wood.
Wipe down the wood with a slightly damp rag to remove the toothpaste residue. Allow the wood to air dry.
Use white spirit as an alternative method for removing permanent marker from finished wood. You can buy white spirit at most home improvement or grocery stores. Moisten a paper towel with white spirit, and rub it onto the marker stain. Allow it to set on the stain for about five minutes. Rub the stain with a soft rag to lift the marker stain. Wipe down the wood with a clean rag dampened with water to remove the white spirit.
Use rubbing alcohol or hairspray as yet another method to remove permanent marker from finished wood. Apply the alcohol or hairspray to a soft rag, and rub it over the marker stain. Follow up by cleaning the wood with a rag dampened with plain water.