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How to Get Paint Out of Clothes and Stop Throwing Them Away

If you’re like most people, you’ve probably had the misfortune of getting paint on your clothes at some point. It’s an all too common accident that can happen when least expected. But don’t despair!

We’re showing you how to get paint out of clothes so that you don’t have to throw them away.

How to get paint out of clothes tips

You can get paint on your clothes when using nail polish, painting a room, upgrading a piece of furniture, or in any other situation. It’s also possible when you’re near a paint job and the fumes drift over to you.

Paint stains are unsightly, but they fade and wash out of clothes easily if you know how to get paint out of clothes. The paint can be oil-based or acrylic.

The essential thing to remember is that it doesn’t automatically mean that your clothes are ruined. Instead, you can try several solutions to get the paint out without damaging the garments or drastically changing their color.

How to Get Paint out of Clothes in 9 Easy Steps

Ways to get paint out of clothes

If you’re wondering how to remove paint from clothes, you should know that it’s not that difficult and doesn’t require much effort. Just follow these steps:

Step 1: Try to remove any wet paint

It’s essential to act quickly, so try to remove any wet paint from your clothes. Don’t let the paint sit on the clothes since it will dry and be more difficult to remove. Besides, the stain could transfer to other clothes.

To remove the paint, scrape it off with a butter knife or putty knife, provided that scraping won’t damage your clothes. Otherwise, you can use any old rag.

After getting rid of as much paint as possible, rinse out any residue and throw away anything that you can’t save (like old rags).

Step 2: Moisten the stain with water

Before pulling out any chemicals that could damage your clothes, you should moisten the stained area with water. It will make it easier for you to fully cleanse your clothes without leaving lumps behind.

Step 3: Tackle the stain

After moistening the stained area, use your hands to rub it gently; it helps to further loosen up the paint residue. In case you’re dealing with dried-up paint stains, you might need to let them soak for a few minutes before removing them.

Worth mentioning is that if you’re working on tough or delicate materials, you should be careful not to stretch out of cloth shape when applying pressure.

Step 4: Apply dishing soap or mild laundry detergent

Once you rinse away all free dye with plain water, work some dishing soap or laundry detergent into the dampened area before proceeding. This will improve your chances of eliminating tough stains.

While working the detergent into a foam, be sure to protect your hands by wearing rubber gloves. Keep working on the paint stains in the soapy water until they disappear. Don’t let them dry on your clothes; it will be harder to remove them later.

Step 5: Rinse your clothes

When the paint is gone, rinse out all dishwashing soap or detergent with clean water. Keep in mind that if you leave any residue, it could attract dirt and other stains.

Rinse clothes remove paint from clothes

Step 6: Wash your clothing properly

The next step is to add your clothing to a washing machine and fill it with cold water. It’s critical to avoid hot water since it can set stains on the fabric.

Some people also advocate using distilled white vinegar to help remove stubborn paint stains – just pour some into the wash cycle along with your laundry detergent to obtain the best results.

Step 7: Tackle any leftover stubborn stains

After washing, most paint should come out without too much difficulty. However, there could be stubborn bits that refuse to budge.

If you notice any such stains, add a bit of laundry detergent directly to the affected area and let it soak for a few minutes before washing. This should help remove them without any further problems.

Step 8: Rinse and dry your clothing

If you have a front-loading washer, run your clothes through 1 to 3 rinse cycles as well as a wash cycle (no detergent).

In the final step, you’ll need to dry your clothing in an automatic drier, although it’s better to let it air-dry. Don’t try ironing or drying your clothes over open flames since this could damage the material.

Step 9: Hire an expert cleaner

If you cannot get the stains completely removed using these methods, take your garments to an expert cleaner. They have access to professional cleaning products that are safe on most fabrics, including wool, silk, and cotton.

More Ways to Get Paint out of Clothes

Removing paint from clothes

Discover more ways to remove paint from your clothes!

How to Get Acrylic Paint Out of Clothes

Acrylic paints are water-based and will come out easily if you follow the above guide. However, if the paint has been dry for a while, soak your clothes in warm water to loosen up the stain before washing as usual.

If you’re looking for additional advice on how to remove acrylic paint from clothes, you can add dishwashing soap or Boraxo to the wash cycle for better results. If all these methods fail, take your clothes to a professional cleaner who has access to industrial cleaning supplies that might be more effective on tough stains.

How to Get Latex Paint Out of Clothes

Latex paint is water-based, so you can remove it by following the same procedures as above.

However, if you’re having trouble removing dried latex paint out of your clothes or fabrics that cannot get wet, try using rubbing alcohol to dissolve the paint:

  • Pour a bit of rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball and place it over the stain.
  • If any color transfers to the cotton ball, replace it with another one until no more stains are absorbed.
  • If it doesn’t work after at least 10 minutes of waiting, soak your stained clothes in lukewarm water with laundry detergent overnight and then launder as usual.

How to Get Oil Paint Out of Clothes

For oil-based paints and stains, you may need to take additional steps:

  • Try adding baking soda to your hand-wash mixture (about 1/4 cup per sink full) and allow it to sit on the paint stains for 10 minutes before washing them out with cold water.
  • Dilute Boraxo with glycerin or use any powdered hand-dishwashing soap instead of liquid dishwashing soap if you can find it.
  • You can also use gasoline or kerosene if nothing else works. But it’s not recommended on any dyed fabric since it may ruin the color forever. Avoid open flames or potential sparks because it could result in a fire.
  • Mix one tablespoon of dishwashing soap or Boraxo with two tablespoons of gasoline, kerosene, turpentine, or lighter fluid in a glass jar, then cautiously pour it over the paint stains. Soak your clothes for an hour, then wash them as usual.

How to Get Dried Paint Out of Clothes

Check out the following tips to try and remove dried paint out of clothes:

  • If the paint is only on the surface of your clothing, try scraping it off with a plastic spoon.
  • Fill a bucket with cold water and add in some gentle laundry detergent. Soak the clothing for about 30 minutes and then launder as usual.
  • Try scrubbing your clothes with white vinegar or full-strength ammonia.
  • Use a soft cloth or sponge and rub gently to avoid damaging the clothing fibers.

How to Get Nail Polish Out of Clothes

If you’re wondering how to get nail polish off clothes, the best way is by using nail polish removers. These products contain acetone, a powerful solvent that can dissolve the fragrant oils found in many nail polishes.

Acetone breaks down the nail polish quicker, making it easier to wipe it off with a cotton ball or to remove it using water and soap.

If it doesn’t work, try adding your regular laundry detergent to the wash cycle instead of using dishwashing liquid. And, if there’s any residue left, soak your stained clothes in lukewarm water with a bit of powdered laundry detergent overnight, then launder as usual.

Removing Paint from Clothes FAQ

Find out more details on how to get rid of paint from clothes:

How to get bleach out of clothes?

You can remove dried bleach stains with baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, or ammonia. Just mix a tablespoon of one of these substances in a gallon of water and apply it to the affected area with a spray bottle for at least 30 minutes before washing your clothes as usual.

How to get paint off your skin?

Try scrubbing the area with water and dishwashing liquid to see if the two chemicals will dissolve or soften the paint enough for you to wipe it away.

If that doesn’t work, place a wet cloth over the affected area of your skin, cover it with plastic wrap, and use a hairdryer to heat the paint and loosen it.

You can also pour dishwashing liquid or white vinegar over the paint and cover the area with plastic wrap. When you remove the plastic, it should take the dried paint away with it.

Another method is to apply mineral oil over the affected area of your skin, allow it to sit for 5-10 minutes, and scrub it away with a soft-bristled toothbrush. You can also use olive oil for this purpose.

Repeat the process if necessary to remove the paint completely. And when you’re done, wash your skin properly to get rid of any residue.

How to get oil out of clothes?

Mix dishwashing liquid with cold water and soak the paint-stained clothes for 30 minutes before washing them as usual. If your garments have been stained by cooking oil, use a cup of ammonia to a bucket of water.

Does acrylic paint wash off?

Acrylic paints are water-soluble, so they should come out easily in the laundry.

How to get paint out of your hair?

You can remove dried paint from your hair by mixing a tablespoon of dishwashing liquid with an egg white and applying the mixture to the stained area. Rinse with lukewarm water after you let the egg sit on the affected area for about 15 minutes.

How to get dried paint out of the carpet?

Try spraying the paint-stained area of your carpet with a mixture of one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and two cups of hot water. Next, use a wet/dry vacuum to suck up all the water.

You can also try mixing one cup of household ammonia with one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and one teaspoon of salt. Apply the mixture to your carpet, allow it to sit for 20-30 minutes, and then vacuum it away to remove paint from carpet.

How to get paint out of jeans?

How to get paint out of jeans

Try scrubbing the paint stains with dishwashing liquid and cold water. If that doesn’t get rid of it, pre-treat the area with a mixture of dishwashing liquid and vinegar. Then you can wash your jeans normally using cold water and bleach-free laundry detergent.

How to get paint off shoes?

First of all, try scraping as much paint from your shoes as you can with a spoon or a dull knife. Then pre-treat the stained areas with a mixture of dishwashing liquid and vinegar before washing them in cold water on a gentle cycle.

How to get pink out of white clothes?

You can use a mixture of two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide and one tablespoon of ammonia to whiten the clothes stained by pink paint.

How to get gas out of clothes?

Place your garments in a bathtub and fill it with cold water. Soak the clothing for an hour or two before rinsing each piece individually.

Don’t wring out the clothing, but squeeze the excess liquid into the tub. Place each garment on a paper towel to blot the stain. Repeat the procedure if necessary.

Does acetone remove paint?

If you’re wondering if acetone will remove paint from clothes, the answer is yes.

Acetone is a colorless liquid used as a solvent, and it’s available at hardware stores and paint shops. Use rubber gloves to protect your skin and dab the acetone on the paint stain using a clean paper towel.

Dabbing will force the solvent into the fabric fibers, allowing them to dissolve the paint that has seeped in.

If you don’t have acetone, you can use nail polish remover instead. It usually contains a mixture of acetone and ethyl acetate.

Use a clean paper towel to blot the stain until the paint comes out. Then wash your clothes as usual with cold water and chlorine-free laundry detergent.

How to remove paint from leather?

You can use water or mineral oil to remove paint from leather items. If the surface is oily, use a dry cloth instead of wetting it.

First, try dabbing the paint-stained area with a paper towel moistened with water or mineral oil, using gentle pressure to absorb as much of the color as you can. Then wipe the area with a clean cloth dampened with mineral oil or water to remove the rest of the paint stain.

Clean your leather items regularly to prevent new stains from forming. If you get another stain, try mixing one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid with two cups of warm water and applying it to the affected area before wiping it off with a clean cloth dampened in mineral oil or water.

How to get wood stain out of clothes?

To remove wood stain from clothes, soak your garments in a mixture of one teaspoon of dishwashing liquid and two cups of water. After 10 minutes, rinse the clothes under cold, running water.

How to get stains out of polyester?

Mix a tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and a cup of hydrogen peroxide to remove stains from polyester clothing.

First, soak the stained garment in cold water to loosen the stain. Then rub the mixture into the material with your fingers or a clean cloth until you see it coming out of the fabric. Let it sit for half an hour before washing the item with warm water and laundry detergent.

How to remove paint from clothes with baking soda?

You can remove paint from clothes by mixing equal parts baking soda and water. Apply this mixture to the stained area and leave it for a few minutes before rinsing with cold water.

How to get dye out of clothes with vinegar?

To remove dye from clothes with vinegar, soak your garment in a mixture of one part cold water and two parts white vinegar for 10 minutes. Then wash the item as usual.

How do you get wax out of clothes?

It’s challenging to remove wax from clothes, but not impossible.

First, put the stained garment over a heat source and use a standard iron to melt the wax. Once it has melted into the fabric, turn off the heat source and let everything cool down before peeling away as much of the solidified wax as possible by hand.

Cover the remaining wax with a paper towel and use an iron on low heat to make it melt. Repeat the process until the wax is no longer visible.

Then wash your garment using chlorine-free laundry detergent, but don’t dry it in the dryer. Instead, hang it to air-dry or lay it flat on a towel before brushing off the fabric fibers.

How to remove paint from cotton?

How to remove paint from cotton

Use a paper towel moistened in water or acetone to clean the affected area. If the spot has hardened, soak it with warm water overnight before scrubbing it with soap and a toothbrush.

If the stain remains, apply hydrogen peroxide to the fiber using a cotton swab, allowing it to soak into the material. Then wash the garment with chlorine-free laundry detergent.

How to remove ink stains from clothes?

To get rid of ink stains on clothes, start by blotting up as much of the stain as you can with a paper towel or clean cloth. Then mix equal parts dishwashing liquid and hydrogen peroxide to form a paste.

Apply this mixture to the stained area with a clean cloth and let it sit for 5 minutes before rinsing with warm water. Finish by washing your garment with chlorine-free laundry detergent in the highest temperature setting allowed to set the dye in place.

Does acetone stain clothes?

Yes. Acetone can be a tough stain to remove from clothing. If possible, lay the garment over a heat source and let the acetone evaporate naturally before laundering it with chlorine-free laundry detergent in the hottest water setting allowed for that type of fabric.

If you don’t have any luck removing an acetone stain by letting it sit overnight, try applying hydrogen peroxide to the fiber using a cotton swab, allowing the liquid to soak into the material. Then wash your garment with chlorine-free laundry detergent in hot water.

Final Thoughts on Getting Paint Out of Clothes

As you can see, getting paint out of clothes isn’t so challenging when you know what to do. Most cases involve just water, without any harsh chemicals. Of course, there are exceptions.

For example, you’ll need a more complex paint removal process if the damaged clothing is made from silk or has a dark color In these cases, try looking for professional help.

Otherwise, always follow the steps outlined in the article above to ensure safety and efficiency when removing paint from your clothes.

Do you have any tips on removing paint from clothes? Share them with us in the comment section below!