How to Get Pen Ink Off the Walls

living room

You probably encourage your toddler to get creative and do some hand painting in their craft book. Unfortunately, when you are not looking, your child could use your walls as a canvas, leaving an unsightly stain on your walls. Instead of digging deep in your pockets to buy paint and spending a few hours repainting your walls, there are ways you can get pen ink off the walls. We have researched for you, and here are a few readily available materials you should consider.

1. Rubbing Alcohol

One of the easiest methods of eliminating that ink mark from your wall is applying rubbing alcohol (isopropyl alcohol), an ingredient in sanitizers. According to Hunker, you need a white cloth to clean the area; if you do not have a lint-free or microfiber white cloth, you can use cotton wool. Colored towels can transfer color from the fabric to the walls. As a result, they will double your workload as you have to get rid of the new stains they leave behind. Pour some rubbing alcohol onto the white cloth and squeeze out the excess amount. Do not rub the mark because the ink will spread further onto the wall, worsening the problem. Instead, dab at the stain until the material you are using absorbs the ink. Once the cloth or cotton wool has absorbed enough ink, get a clean piece of cotton wool or the clean side of the white cloth, dampen it with rubbing alcohol and dab at the mark. Repeat the process until the ink disappears.

2. Toothpaste

SFGate enlightens us that you should not use any toothpaste; it has to be white, non-gel. Apply only enough to cover the ink mark, and leave it for about ten minutes to allow the gentle abrasives in the toothpaste to work their magic. Once the ten minutes are up, use a white damp cloth to dab at the mark and gently wipe, being careful not to rub. If the stain is large such that dabbing at it will take ages to clean up, you can clean from the outside towards the inside until the wall is ink-free.

3. Baking Soda

Dilute baking soda with water because using undiluted baking soda can be harsh on the paint beneath the ink. Rubbing hard can remove the color off the wall; therefore, it is recommended that you rub gently using the diluted mixture. The ideal ratio is a quarter cup of baking soda to a bucket of lukewarm water. If the ink mark is on a large surface, scrub gently from top to bottom once the stain disappears, rinse and clean using a dry, clean rag.

4. Vinegar

Vinegar is acidic, and this property makes it one of the best household cleaners. According to Kitchn, distilled white vinegar has a pH of 2.4, making it perfect for cleaning stubborn stains. To get pen ink off a wall, soak a piece of white cotton cloth in a cup of vinegar and use it to rub gently over the ink mark. If the ink stain does not come off, you can make a stronger cleaning agent by adding baking soda to the vinegar. Use the same method of rubbing gently over the stain. As always, you should start from to bottom to avoid leaving drip marks on your wall.

5. Hairspray

It was thought to be a myth, but hairspray can indeed get rid of ink marks on your wall. Most likely, those who believed it to be myth used the wrong kind of hairspray since the only effective hairspray is alcohol-based. All you have to do is spray directly on the ink mark and allow it to sit for at least half a minute. You can then use a damp white cloth to wipe off the ink. It can take few repeated moves to eliminate the stain. So be patient, but remember to use a clean part of the white cloth always when wiping the wall.

6. Nail Polish Remover

Nail polish remover contains acetone, which is good at removing ink. However, note that in its pure form, it cannot cause stains or damage synthetic materials. When mixed with other additives, it causes chemical reactions that cause stains. Therefore as Mom Informed published, 100% acetone nail polish remover will have you redoing your paint job. It is so strong that it not only gets rid of the ink mark on your wall, but also the paint. Apply some nail polish remover to a piece of cloth. Gently rub from the outside towards the inside to get pen ink off the wall. If you apply too much pressure when rubbing, you will cause the acetone to react more with the stain on your wall, and you will be left with an unpainted patch on your wall. Also, if you apply the nail polish remover directly on the wall instead of onto the cloth, the acetone will react and cause the paint to run.

Can You Paint Over the Ink on Wall?

Sometimes, you might feel that you were thinking of repainting the room anyway so why not just paint over the ink and kill two birds with one stone? Unfortunately, that is not the best way to deal with the ink mark. Ink usually bleeds into the paint, and the stain you were trying so hard to cover up will resurface with time. If you do not want to use the above methods to clean the ink but still want to paint, you can use a primer before applying paint. Water-based stain-blocking primers effectively block ink, crayons, grease and other stains from bleeding through the paint. These primers are great because they also provide easy clean-up, are odorless and have no volatile organic compounds. Be careful and go for water-based stain-blocking primers because a latex-based primer will still have ink bleeding through it and onto the paint.

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