How to remove paint stains – Ranging from the renovation and having stains on wooden flooring or doors and metal handles to the daily usage of fabric-based furniture, paint stains are a complete worry. 

While it is best to ensure and keep fabrics and materials well maintained and away from stains, still it is practically impossible to avoid any stains. 

Today, there exist many methods to remove paint stains from different materials and get rid of them, making your materials look shiny and beautiful, yet again.

How to get rid of paint stain from different things - Sheet1
Paint Stain on Sofa ©

Paint stains can be due to water-based (latex, craft paints) or oil-based paints(enamels). It is usually hard to remove paint stains and shall be kept wet immediately until treated to avoid absorption. However, it also depends on the type of material. Paint stains if left unattended can cause damage to the aesthetics of a product. 

So here are a few ways to remove paint stains from various materials.

Removing Water-Based Paint Stains

These paints are designed to dissolve in water. They can be removed easily if handled the right way.

How to get rid of paint stain from different things - Sheet2
Water-Based Paint Stain ©

1. Fabrics (Carpets or Upholstery) | How to remove paint stains

For any small portion of a paint stain, scrape off using any blunt dull knife or plastic card edge, the paint as much as possible, and then blot it with an absorbent towel.

Try to keep it moist.

In case it dries, use a brush to brush off the hardened paint. Apply soap and water solution or pant/varnish remover. Scrape off any remaining hardened paint. Spray with water and blot with rubbing alcohol. Use the cleaner areas of the towel to keep removing until the paint is gone.

For larger paint stains, soak the stain with water and put towels over the stain to blot and repeat the same.

For a soft, unhardened stain, apply turpentine, soap, and water to remove it.

How to get rid of paint stain from different things - SheetHow to get rid of paint stain from different things - Sheet3
Things Needed ©

2. Wood

Use a soft water-soaked rag and gently remove the paint stain. Use warm water for soaking. Rinse and re-soak the rag and repeat the steps until the paint gets removed.

Denatured alcohol may be used in case water does not work. The method is very suitable for wooden floorings and frames.

3. Metal | How to remove paint stains

Acidic concentrations may be used for removing hard paints from the metal surfaces. It is easier to remove oil-based paints from metals and hence chemicals are used for hard paints like acrylics in this case. The acid peels off the paint layer and evaporates. This removes the stain in no time.

Removing Oil-Based Paint Stains

These paints are oil-based, hence harder to remove as they try to stick to the material surface.

Oil-Based Paints ©
Oil-Based Paints ©

1. Fabrics(Upholstery or Carpets)

Scrape off all the excess paint. Water spray the stain. Alternately blot with the turpentine and clean water until the stain is gone. Use a lukewarm detergent mix on the stain by a sponge and blot until the stain gets removed. Use clean water for blotting and let the carpet or upholstery dry. Use a vacuum cleaner afterward.

Blot with a clean cloth or paper towel to absorb the paint. Do it with a light touch to avoid pushing paint deeper into the upholstery. A steamer may be used to soften/dampen. Use a paper clip to separate fabric fibers. To blot away the remaining paint, use nail paint remover/paint thinner or turpentine dipped in a clean cloth.

Professional drycleaning may be used for larger stains that are oil-based.

2. Wood

Use a soft rag dabbed in mineral spirits for oil-based paint stains. They cannot be removed through water on wood.

Heat guns may also be used at a distance to dry and harden the stain and later remove it through scraping.

Chemical paint strippers or sandpapers may also be used for the same.

3. Metal | How to remove paint stains

Baking Soda may be used to remove paint stains whether oil or water-based from a metal surface. Baking soda and hot water are used and the part of the surface is immersed in it to let the stain vanish. Usually, after an hour, it strips off.

Paint Stain Removal Tips

Here are a few things one must follow while removing a paint stain from different materials.

  • Don’t leave paint stains unattended. The quicker you remove it, the more easily it will get removed. This happens as the paint has just started to get absorbed in the fibers.
  • Try the cleaner first in a hidden, less visible spot to ensure that it does not discolors/removes the color of the product.
  • Do not use liquid paint remover for wet stains.
  • Cold water is best for rinsing stains.
  • Keep changing the sides of the clean towel used as it soaks the paint. Also, use a separate dry rag for drying an area.
  • Don’t rub the fabric too hard. It may lead to fading or harming fibers and affect the quality. 
Paint Stains ©
Paint Stains ©


Remove Paint Stains from Clothes and Furniture (

How to remove paint stains from kids’ clothes and furniture – Kidspot


Shivani Chandra,a student of Bachelors in Architecture,is an eager reader and observer. The variety of users and perspectives,& the fact that architecture has solutions for all is what intrigues her. She firmly believes in the strength of healthy architecture in making the world a better place to live in.