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Remove Nail Polish from Clothing, Rugs, and Other Surfaces

Home manicures are a boon for the budget - until you stain your favorite jeans or coffee table with nail polish. Since nail polish is formulated to cling to surfaces, it’s notoriously difficult to remove where it doesn’t belong. But before you angrily toss all your nail polish and the stained item in the trash, read this. Chances are, you’ll be able to remove the stain and salvage the stained piece, after all.

Can you remove dried nail polish?

How to Remove Nail Polish woman painting nails
The short answer is - it depends on the surface. Generally speaking, fresh stains are easier to get rid of than older ones. While dried nail polish may be possible to remove from hard surfaces like tile or wood, dried nail polish on clothing is quite tough to get out at home. Our advice? Take the garment to a dry-cleaner - a professional may be able to help.

Remove nail polish from fabrics

How to Remove Nail Polish nail polish spilled on carpet

First and foremost, examine the label on the article of clothing. Garments made of acetate fabrics, for example, should never be treated with nail polish remover. Other fabrics may also be bleached or degraded by nail polish remover, so consult the garment label before trying to clean it on your own.

If you’re dealing with a small stain, dip a cotton bud in nail polish remover and dab the fresh stain until it’s slightly damp. Work the liquid into the fabric until no stain remains. Replace the cotton bug with clean ones to prevent the nail polish from bleeding into the fabric.

For bigger areas, dampen a clean cloth in nail polish remover and rub the area until no more color is coming off.

How to Remove Nail Polish cleaning a carpet

After using the nail polish remover, rinse the stained area thoroughly under the faucet with some tepid water. Trying to avoid spreading the stain and let the water run right through the fabric.

Then proceed with one of the following scenarios:

  • Clothing
    When you have cleaned away as much nail polish as you could, launder the article of clothing as usual. If the fabric can handle it, you may pretreat the stained area with a gentle stain remover before throwing it in the wash. Dry clean only clothing should be cleaned professionally.

  • Carpeting and upholstery
    If traces of nail polish remain after using nail polish remover, follow up with a carpet stain removal. In case it doesn’t help, take a pair of small scissors and carefully snip off the tips of carpet tufts to remove traces of dried nail polish.

Remove nail polish from hard surfaces

How to Remove Nail Polish spilled nail polish bottles

If you’re dealing with a fresh stain, dampen a white paper towel in some nail polish remover and wipe off the stain until it is fully removed. Be extra careful when dealing with painted wood or stone because the nail polish remover could damage the finish of the surface. Whenever hesitant, test on an inconspicuous area first.

For dried nail polish stains, you can try and pick off dried nail polish flakes using tweezers. For bigger stains, you can try and remove the nail polish with a metal scraper. After removing the majority of the stain, follow up by cleaning and rinsing the surface with soap and water.

H/T: Good Housekeeping

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