It’s Not Permanent- Tips to remove permanent marker

Let’s continue my efforts to look on the bright side, shall we?

Recently, my son found his way to the only permanent marker yet to be banished from our home.

Upon finding said marker, he feverishly decorated my kitchen and himself.

After weeks of tweeting, googling and testing products, I have ultimately gotten the marker out of everything. AND due to his efforts, I now have a nice little (and pin-able) list of how to get permanent marker out of pretty much anything in your home.

How to remover permanent marker from anything in your home


From clothing and pretty much everything else: hand sanitizer

and if that doesn’t work…

From painted walls: toothpaste or hairspray (hairspray works best but will begin to remove paint if you have to scrub hard) or my best friend, Mr. Clean and his Magic Eraser.

From carpet: white vinegar, pour on area and cover with a towel, gently blot with towel, do not rub (courtesy of @stayathomebabe)

From wood cabinets: rubbing alcohol

From a stove: white vinegar

From a wood floor: took lots of work but I used rubbing alcohol to take out most of it, then tea tree oil took out more, then toothpaste got the last of it out.

Here’s the tea tree oil I like best. It’s gentle enough to use on skin but also works great on household surfaces.

From a 3 year-old: tea tree oil worked instantly and is non-toxic so I was able to use it to remove the marker on his face (he drew “tiger eyebrows” of course).

Now for How to remove the urge to draw all over your Mom’s kitchen with a permanent marker from your child? I’ll have to let you know when I find the answer to that one.

Don’t hold your breath.

What’s your best stain removal tip?



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  1. says

    I do consider all the ideas you have presented on your post. They are really convincing and can certainly work. Still, the posts are too brief for newbies. May just you please lengthen them a bit from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.

  2. Melissa Taylor says

    Of all things, who would have thought a baby wipe would take off permanent marker!! My daughter marked all over her sisters face and my husband grabbed a baby wipe, worked like magic!

  3. Silvia says

    Hi Jessica,
    I hope you or one of your readers can help me. My daughter was drawing with Sharpies, but some of her drawings ended up outside the paper and on the tablecloth. This is a printed green synthetic fabric tablecloth (maybe acrylic or something like that), and it has some permanent stains on it. I’ve tried all the tips: alcohol, but I only have 70% alcohol, maybe I should buy a 90% one?. Also, WD-40, hairspray, hand sanitizer and nothing has worked. The alcohol worked at the beginning when the stain was still fresh, but then nothing else came out and the stain is really visible. Do I have to apply one of the solutions and wash the tablecloth immediately, and then see if it comes out, or the stain is supposed to come out almost completely before the wash?
    Thank you very much for your advice.

  4. says

    HERE IS A CHALLENGE FOR YA’LL (and NOT for the faint at heart DIY selfers!)
    *Please Note*
    You should prepare yourself for dissapointment without losing your motivation if that’s possible :-p
    Try this:
    Removing marker from stuffed animal tags (ie; compliments of Goodwill’s tacky pricing method) W/O compromising the tag or letter…making it appear as though the marker never happened as much as possible.

  5. says

    HERE IS A CHALLENGE FOR YA’LL (and NOT for the faint at heart DIY selfers!)
    However…you should prepare yourself for dissapointment without losing your motivation if that’s possible :-p
    Try this:
    Removing marker from stuffed animal tags (ie; compliments of Goodwill’s tacky pricing method) W/O compromising the tag or letter…making it appear as though the marker never happened as much as possible.

    I think the person who can achieve that deserves a medal of Internet honor, wouldn’t you agree? I will create a badge, trophy and or framed certificate, maybe a special dedication page~who knows! I’m going do some-thing amazing for whoever can achieve this~that’s for sure!
    Best of Luck! XO:)

  6. says

    This is a very good tip particularly to those fresh to the blogosphere.
    Short but very precise information… Appreciate your
    sharing this one. A must read article!
    Fiberglass recently posted..Fiberglass

  7. says

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  8. Abigail says

    Thanks so much! There was Sharpie dots all over the back of one of my CD’s from decorating the sleeve! I took a little Germ-X to it and it came right off!

  9. T Schmitz says

    I was a little skeptical. but the sanitizer actually worked. probably have to do to it one more to get it off totally but. you can barely see it.

  10. Terri says

    Rubbing alcohol (90%) worked wonders on our apt bathroom door!! It took some paint off but it’s a white door and you can’t tell. Thanks for the info everyone!!

  11. says

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    wait to take a look when I get home. I’m amazed at how fast your blog loaded on my phone .. I’m not even using
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  12. Renee Barnhart says

    I would like to know how would someone remove a hot pink highlighter marker from leather cowboy boots? Please even email me. I have a pair of little girl’s pink cowboy boots that have been scribbled with a pink highlighter,

  13. sarah says

    THANK YOU!!! Hand sanitizer did the trick on my couch. For butter or oil stains, sprinkle the area with baby powder. Wait overnight (or longer) and wash normally. Repeat if necessary. For berry stains, pour boiling (not just hot) water slowly over the item.

  14. rose says

    re… how to stop your kids drawing all over mummy’s kitchen etc
    Right from an early age i have always let my kids use numerous art materials including permanent markers in a supervised free art play… lots of paper cardboard wood and fabric to draw on. while drawing with them we always talked about where it was ok to draw and where it wasnt. constant reinforcement of this fact and when the found a marker / crayon/ pen etc and wanted to draw.. the answer would always be “yes… lets get the paper out and draw on that” … works even when they are not talking… just see their interest in the pen, provide paper and encourage them to draw on that. My kids are now 4 and older but have complete free access to art materials now, as they know they can use these for their creative outlet whenever the desire arises. we have jars of permanent pens, paints, glue, pens, pencils and lots and lots of paper. They know what they can use and where.

    similier thing also works for buttons, switches, and electronic equipment that you dont want the kids to play with. ie the dishwasher… if they play with the buttons, stop them and tell them that when its full they can help you turn it on then… my then 2 yr old loved this, so everytime the dishwasher is full, i get it all ready and he rushes over and presses the buttons for me. never ever played with after that as he knew he would get to turn it on for mummy when it was full… same applied for washingmachine, light switches, vacumn cleaner, stereo, remotes etc. Now my kids love to help! yay.. long may that last! :-)

  15. says

    Love your tips, really helpful as I also have a little artist who has drawn on our walls, fireplace, carpet with permanent marker and have yet been successful in removing it all. Will give your tips a try! No more permanent markers in our house! (he’s also drawn with crayon and chalk on our walls but that’s easier to remove! They’re very quick these wee boys!)
    Sam McEwan recently posted..Single Income Family – 10 Money Saving Ideas

  16. Patty says

    Wish I knew this after I painted my condo and used almsot all the paint. Then the marker came. U used the VERY last worked hard to get teh last drops out to repaint. Yikes the next day was a hammer to teh wall. Had to buy new paint.

  17. says

    So glad I found this on Pinterest! My sister’s 4 year old just took one to their van – the seats, doors, everything! Going to call her right now!

  18. camille says

    I just tried your tip for walls. I used hairspray and it worked right away. It does begin to take off the top layer of paint if scrubbed hard (just like you said) but it still looks a lot better than the nice little artwork my little one left behind.

  19. Bethany says

    My aha moment was when my 3 year old Autistic grandson decided to color my barstool’s cloth seat with a purple crayon! He didn’t just “color” it, he scrubbed that crayon into the fabric with every bit of strength he could muster & anyone who has an Autistic child in their family, knows just how intense that can be! Needless to say, I thought it was a lost cause until I came across a suggestion I found online. I laid a brown paper bag over the fabric, then topped that with a towel & used a medium heat iron on it. This warmed the wax & the paper sack wicked it up & out of the fabric. I repeatedly changed out the paper, to maximize the process. When the majority of it was out, I scrubbed the fabric with Dawn dish soap & warm water. To this day, I cannot tell which chair he colored on!

  20. Paul Wiggins says

    I’m having trouble removing names wrote in permanent marker from kinder mats. They are kinda like vinyl but just won’t let the marker go. Any advise?

  21. Kim says

    My granddaughter used a permanent marker on a baby doll and we still haven’t found anything to get it out. We tried just about everything we could think of. If anyone knows of something please let me know.

  22. says

    Thanks so much! My 2 year old and 1 yearold are now starting to team up on finding markers and coloring all over my stuff when daddy is on duty! LOL!

    • Debby says

      My two puppies got on my husband’s night stand and got hold of the permanent black marker and it got on our light colored tan carpet in two places. I already tried the vinegar and it didn’t work. Any other suggestions for carpet? Thank you so much.

  23. LISA H says

    Has anyone found a solution to get permanent sharpie marker off a leather sofa. It does fade over time but I have tried EVERYTHING AND I MEAN EVERYTHING to get it off my sofa. I have googled every website and solution. Has anyone had this happen to them?

  24. Stacey says

    To get marker off of my daughter, who used to draw pants on herself, I put her in the tub with colgate shaving cream. It took a few tries, but she loved playing with the shaving cream in the tub. Be sure to rinse you child thoroughly afterward though! She’s 12 now, and I don’t have to use this tip anymore…

  25. Akhira says

    I suggest that you may use borax to effectively get rid of those mark over your wall and rest assured that the solution is totally safe and won’t inflict any harm. All you have to do is spray over the solution and rub it with a piece of cloth.
    Akhira recently posted..tea tree oil acne treatment

  26. Lita says

    I have permanent marker on my vinyl table. I have tried alcohol, vinegar, baking soda, Mr. Eraser and hydro peroxide and nothing has worked, do you have any tips on how to remove it? Oh maybe I should use Tea Tree Oil.
    Thank you for your assistance.

    • says

      I would try tea tree oil or hand sanitizer. Some people recommend writing over it with a wipe-off marker and then wiping them both off. Good luck!

  27. says

    These are great tips. My 2 year old did this JUST last week on 3 walls, a TV, baby gate, himself, couch, carpet and dining room floors. Only place I haven’t been able to get out the stain is the couch and carpet. Now, I know what to try. :)
    Kristen White recently posted..Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

  28. Gail says

    OMG, I was laughing so hard when I saw your son with all the marker on his face and body! My granddaughter did the exact same thing a few years ago. Some day we will laugh about this!

  29. Kallie says

    I use nail polish remover on skin. Fastest thing to get permenant marker out. I havent tried it on anything else just yet. Also if you have polish on your nails WEAR GLOVES!

  30. sam says


  31. Chetori says

    here’s how i just cleaned permanent marker off my husbands new LCD flat screen t.v.

    Your going to need to get a microfiber cloth. If you don’t have a microfiber cloth, you can use any kind of soft cloth to use instead. Microfiber is highly recommended though, so you don’t scratch the screen on your TV or computer screen.

    Next you will need toothpaste. You can use colgate, or really most brands will work. You want a paste without gel. For some reason the paste has a better cleaning agent when it comes to permanent markers.

    Dampen your cloth with a little bit of water, and add a pea size amount of toothpaste. Lightly smear it around the cloth.

    In small circles wipe the screen with the toothpaste on it to remove it. As soon as it’s removed use a clean part of the cloth to continue wiping off the toothpaste from the screen.

    Rinse the cloth well, and wipe over the area.

    Next spray down the screen with an electronics surface cleaner. Make sure it’s safe for your screen an monitor.

  32. Lauren says

    Thank you so much! My 18 month old was running around with a sharpie yesterday. The cap was on, thank goodness, but I know I’ll be needing this post in the near future!

  33. Juliet Weber says

    Nice tips! The pictures made me anxious enough to almost spin into panic mode for you! Baby wipes will also remove permanent marker from skin (but not from walls). oh, and it’s an AMWAY product, so you can get it from an AMWAY distributor.
    Juliet Weber recently posted..Many Mops

  34. Amy Waters says

    My son used red sharpie on our dishwasher and I too googled solutions. After trying EVERYTHING, the ONLY thing that removed it was OFF Skintastic Spray. Yes, bug repellant! crazy but it worked!

  35. Kristie W. says

    My daughter had the same mission with a permanent marker in my kitchen,my bedroom and her bedroom. I used the Magic Eraser for the majority of the clean up but I could not for the love of me get the marker off of my brand new refrigerator. So I called my brother who works with children at a private daycare and he suggested spray suntain lotion. I had a can left from the summer and was desperate so I sprayed it on the mark and it wiped away completely. Spray suntan lotion is definitely stocked in my house.

  36. says

    Any thoughts on getting Sharpie off a porous stone fireplace hearth? I’ve scrubbed with Acetone, but you can still see the red marker & there is a noticeable lighter shade of grey where I scrubbed with a brush.

  37. Jacquelyn says

    What about the inside of a garage door?(The actual garage door.) Just walked out into the garage and my 3 year old son was hiding in the corner because he knew he had done something naughty. Tried Protek, bleach, hand sanitizer, and hairspray, and still looking for the cure.

  38. Anne Lake says

    A friend that teaches first grade had students that used permanent markers on her white board easel during indoor recess. I suggested hair spray to remove it when the white board cleaner wouldn’t work. It did work. It saved her having a “PINK” white board.

  39. Lindsey Brown says

    How about permenant marker out of my microfiber furniture? As many markers that i have thrown away my 3 year old daughter always seems to find one! She drew all over my furniture and walls! So frusterated till i found this!

  40. Amanda says

    My daughter got a hold of one of these vile markers and drew all over our vinyl climbing blocks. I have tried everything I can think of including hairspray, rubbing alcohol, nail polish remover, baking soda and a magic eraser. Do you or anyone have any other suggestions or ideas?

  41. Violet says

    Unfortunately my son had done the same thing…on everything. Walls, furniture, cabinets, doors, floors, and toys. I did try the hairsprat and it didn’t work to well. I can’t remember what website I got the “magic cleaner” from….but it is baking soda and water. Make a paste out of both ingredients. Does wonders!!!!

  42. Deborah says

    I’ll be pinning this for future reference! Any chance anyone knows how to get permanent marker out of a leather couch?

  43. Lisa Graham-Garza says

    Hi there. I think you and I need to be computer friends! I love your four and an angel – my best friend from college is mom to 7 and an angel. I’m going to share that line with her! I found you on Pinterest through a friend helping me figure out how to get permanent black sharpie ink off our new white shutters in our formal dining room of our nice new house! I have two boys and my younger son Tyler has autism and yes, he is the artist. I made the mistake of trying to take a shower with just me and my boys home alone (I have two sons ages 9 and 11) and had left the only permanent marke we own in a drawer his radar for destruction led him to…
    I will use your tips to try to remove it all so thank you and I’ll think of you as I look for Starbucks with drive-throughs…

    • says

      Sounds like we have the same life. My son too has permanent maker radar and I can’t remember the last time I took a shower by myself. Just yesterday they got ahold of my makeup bag when I thought they were playing alone quietly… things did not end well.

  44. Jenn says

    Brake Cleaner works to remove sharpie from clothing. Spray once, launder, repeat if needed. Scrub treated area with Dawn dish soap, launder again.

  45. Eurika77 says

    Fingernail polish remover works great for removing permanent marker from non-porous surfaces too!

  46. says

    Baby wipes also work well! I used baby wipes to remove sharpie from my computer monitor at 5am one morning after my then 3 year old got a hold of it! :)

  47. Julie says

    Toothpaste gets it off of pretty much anything. Especially appliances like my refridgerator

  48. says

    does anyone know how to get nail polish off a blanket my child and her little friend got nail polish all over my daughters baby blanket (im more upset than my daughter about it) but shes had it since our first mothers day together and i want to be able to salvage it!! PLEASE help!!

  49. Cassi says

    My son LOVES sharpies and seems to have them hidden all over the house. When he went to town on our tan leather sofa, I tried everything I knew of and heard about. The only thing that worked was undiluted Tea Tree Oil. I have since used that on hard surfaces as well. It gets up about 95% of the marker, and the rest fades away on its own.

  50. Jay Treadwell says

    Tell me how to get it off the red brick around our fireplace?

    Yeah, I didn’t think so?

    I have heard it said, “there is a special place in hell for people who paint brick”, but it may just come to that.

  51. says

    Thats Awesome… good tips to know because I love Sharpies….and every now and a then I find that they have gone missing from my art drawer.

    ps. toothpaste also removes ground in lipstick from leather/vinyl couches, kids and mummies make-up sigh.
    megan recently posted..The Candy Train.

  52. Robin says

    Sharpie does not come out of white swiss flannel. I tried everything… I am saving the dress that was fully smocked and almost completed (needed sleeves and buttons/buttonholes/hemmed) to give to my son’s wife when they marry. Will advice her to keep sharpies out of the hands of any of their children. :)

  53. Maureen says

    Method Le Scrub got sharpie off my bathroom linoleum. I woke up to find a purple flowered path from the bathroom door to the toilet.

  54. Kiki says

    Just so you all know…. Permanent marker does not come out of yoga mats. I tried everything, with no luck. Gaiam says that it doesn’t come out as well..

  55. Tanya says

    sunscreen will remove permanent marker from whiteboards, laminate floors and other various hard surfaces. Seems really odd, but totally works

  56. rebecca says

    Thank you so much for this. My 3 year old got hold of a bright purple permanent marker and decorated her bedroom wall about 2 days ago. I have been stressing about how to get the darn stuff off! Thank you for the answer :)

  57. jan says

    This is almost unbelieveable BUT my 12 year old daughter taught me this to remove permanent Sharpie marker – mark over the permanent marker with an Expo dry erase marker and permanent marker wipes right off. Amazing! (we have never tried it on skin, so i don’t know if that would work, but it is amazing on hard surfaces.)

  58. says

    After finding out that tears will not remove sharpie marker from brand new Saltillo (spanish clay) tile, we tried everything. Finally, automotive break cleaner wiped it right off. No damage to the tile, no visible marks left. Whew!

  59. Mona Joy says

    Jessica, I agree on the toothpaste, but I found out that if you use Arm & Hammer Toothpaste that contains baking soda it removes it off of everything and won’t damage the carpet either. I tried it on a year old red soda stain on carpet and it vanished.

  60. Peggy says

    My grandson covered his face in red permanent marker after watching a spiderman movie. I contacted the sharpie company and they said rubbing alcohol will take it off. It worked really well. No scrubbing and no sore skin.

  61. Anjie says

    Dry erase marker will take permanent marker off of any non-porous surface! It’s easy too! I let my daughter use sharpie to practice letters on a dry erase board and we use dry erase marker to remove it and start again. My 10 yr-old Daughter loves using sharpies on her mirrors…she changes her sentiments often and loves this trick!

  62. Kelley Browning says

    You can also remove permanent marker from your skin using baby wipes. My children were competitive swimmers growing up and always wrote their events on their arms or legs…cleaned up easily with baby wipes!

    • Jessica says

      Will have to try baking soda if there is a next time (although I\’m hoping there isn\’t). Thanks!

  63. kc says

    When I was little, I drew on the wall and then said, “WALL, MOMMY! WALL!” They didn’t even have to guess who it was. Luckily though, it was pencil. I’m sure we drew on the walls though; I know we at least fingerpainted the kitchen once.

  64. says

    Best tip I’ve learned in a long time. Removing rust from metal with tin foil and a little warm water. Fold over tin foil so no rough edges are showing, dampen with a little water and rub back and forth. I’ve done a vintage tin, shower head and bike fender this way, it’s magic!

  65. Donna says

    I work with a special needs child and because he is visually impaired we often use permanent markers so he can see what we are writing. More than once he has accidently written on my clothes. Hand sanitizer will take it out. Pour it on and rub with your thumb nail. It does take some work, but it’s worth it to save your clothes.

    • says

      Wish I had seen this a few days ago before throwing out all my Son’s uniform shorts. I had tried every stain remover I could think of it didn’t even LIGHTEN.

  66. Teresa says

    To remove permanent marker from laminated surfaces, trace over the marks with a washable marker, then simply rub off. Great idea for teachers!

  67. Sarah says

    I heard if you paint below a chair rail or full wall in a Childs bedroom with chalkboard paint and tell them this is your special wall to color/draw wall and tell them all the other walls without the special color are your walls helps to fix the coloring urge. Heard it works 100%

  68. Amber says

    When my daughter was 2 we had a “Sharpie Massacre” she was supposed to be asleep so I didn’t think anything of how quiet it was. I went to my room and there she was with a red sharpie…not sure where it came from! My walls, bed spread, sheets, pillowcases, headboard everything was red she even did her finger and toe nails and lipstick! I got it off the headboard with the magic eraser, and for the beding WD-40 just srayed it and threw it into the wash and not a sopt on it when all was done. I didn’t have time to research the non-toxic methods so I also used WD-40 on a rag to get it off my daughter of course after that she took a 45 min bath to make sure everything was off but when she went to school the next morning no one could even tell!

  69. Sarah says

    I’m a teacher and came across this…. Perm. Marker on a white board or student desk or any slick surface similar to it can be effortlessly taken off with dry erase marker. Just color over the mArked area with the dry erase marker and Tadaaa it’s clean. Who says kids can’t teach their teacher something!

  70. Jessica says

    Thanks so much. Leave a two year old alone for a second and oye… I thought for sure the markers were out of reach but when I got to her she proudly showed me her latest piece of artwork, on the wall, in the hallway! The hairspray+the magic eraser worked like a charm, I thought for sure I was going to have to paint this weekend!

  71. Carrie mcClung says

    hey, great ideas! forgive me if this is doubled with someone else’s but there are soooo many comments, I don’t have the time to check them all. LOC (Liquid Organic Cleaner) is also GREAT in getting Sharpie off of kids and furniture and is not toxic. It also won’t harm painted walls. (it is an oil based soap, so carpets don’t work as well). It did wonders when my daughter painted her body in war paint last year (Rust colored rustoleum). oh, and it’s an AMWAY product, so you can get it from an AMWAY distributor.

    as far as not coloring on self… my two year old looked like “Lydia the Tattooed Lady” for a few days when last seen with a Sharpie… sigh. I just keep reiterating, “We color on PAPER! not on furniture, not on Zoe, ONLY on PAPER!!” she now tells her little brother the same. we’ll see if that works. 😉

    • Jessica says

      I have never heard of it but now MUST by it. Thanks for the tip. One of these days our kids will grow out of this phase, right?

  72. says

    My little neighbor took a sharpie and colored my grand piano up and down the keys. We inherited this piano from my mother in law. I tried motsenbockers graffiti eraser and it took it right off. I didn’t even tell my husband.

  73. Jessica G. says

    We recently had an incident at college where they got it on the new tables, the student colored over the permanent marker with dry erase marker and right away wiped it away with an eraser, it all came up really easy. It was sort of amazing! You can’t let the dry erase marker dry before you wipe it though, it has to be wet still. So color over a small part and then erase it away.

  74. Amanda Elmgren says

    Legacy of clean All purpose cleaner takes it right out of everything…used it at home plenty of times (unfortunately) part is its all natural biodegradable and phosphate free

  75. Erin says

    Hairspray. My son had Sharpie drawings on our new hardwood floors and I sprayed the marks with hairspray and they wiped right off.

  76. Mary W. says

    Tea tree oil removed it for me from 1) child, 2) tv screen, 3) formica countertop, 4) white carpet, 5) real wood coffee table, and 6) fake wood paneled door.

  77. Carolyn says

    “Pink solution” from Canada has gotten Sharpie out of carpet. It took most of the Sharpie out of my dd’s white hoody, but I’m going for sunscreen and vinegar next.

    Of course, stretching the stain over a coffee mug (to catch the water) and then pouring scalding water through might remove some as well.

  78. Trish says

    Another hint on removing permanent marker on many surfaces is to use a wipe off marker. Simply cover the permanent with the wipe off marker and wipe off. I have used this method on wood, fridge, wipeoff board and even my nintendo DS. Thanks for the other tips, with a whole new generation of grandkids exploring with markers it is very good to know. Thank you.

  79. says

    I learned the hard way this summer that permanent marker on fabric (in my case an acrylic blanket) can be gotten out with hand sanitizer continually blotted on it and dabbed off with paper towels. My dachshund had found one to chew on one morning before I woke up…but as I’m due any day now with our first I guess the lesson might come in handy some day!
    Kate recently posted..Last Minute Whirlwind

  80. Kendra says

    I am sooooo glad I found this! My girls “colored” with a sharpie all over my blinds and walls. I didn’t have a clue how to get it off…now I do. So relieved. Thank you!

    • Jessica says

      Someone else commented that writing over the sharpie with a dry erase marker and then wiping it off worked well too. Good luck!!

  81. Kari says

    THANK YOU!!! My two & a half year old’s favorite activity is coloring on things that aren’t meant to be colored on. :)

  82. Lisa says

    A pencil eraser took Sharpie off of my flat panel monitor (after I had a heart attack!). It works on many hard surfaces–just “erase” over the mark until gone.

  83. Kelley says

    Baby wipes will also remove permanent marker from skin (but not from walls). I have kids that are 10.5 years apart and both of them have managed to draw on their face (and walls and floors) with permanent marker.

  84. Wendy says

    Actually, the best thing I’ve ever found to remove Sharpie from everything is…sunblock. I worked for over 10 years in daycare, and every bottle ever brought in by a parent and labelled with permanent marker was without a name after the first application. It even works with aerosol sunblock. My son also likes to color on everything with Sharpies. And only when I’m not home! So I feel your pain! :)

    • Jessica says

      I haven\’t heard that one until today. Even though I am hoping there isn\’t a \”next time\” I will have to try it if there is one.

      • Katie says

        Sunscreen works great! I would just caution you to not use it on any finished surface. Have you ever noticed how it takes the shine off your nail polish after applying? It will do the same thing to anything plastic, wood, etc.

  85. Pamala says

    to remove sharpie from skin you can also use any creamy kind of sunscreen… the spray kind won’t do it, but any of the rub on kinds seem to work :)

    • Rhonda says

      Actually, both of my boys are on swim team and we have to write on their arms with permanent marker for the swim meets. We use spray Coppertone to take it off!

  86. Jesse says

    My son “accidentally” wrote on our kitchen table with a Sharpie. My husband remembered that when he was an instructor if someone “accidentally” used a permanent marker on a white board, just rubbing a dry erase marker over the permanent marker would remove it. Worked on the table too! :)

    • Jessica says

      That is a great tip. I had heard that before too about a dry erase board but never thought of it working on wood too.

  87. says

    Someone shared this on facebook a few weeks ago. My 20 month old got a hold of a permanent marker and colored the carpet and kitchen cabinet. And my 3 year old colored the bathroom countertop! Thanks for sharing these tips. They really came in handy!
    Amy Marshall recently posted..Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing

    • Jessica says

      Oh good, I\’m so glad that you could use them although sorry that you need to. What is it with kid and markers??

    • Jessica says

      The vinegar does work great for carpets, nice to find something that gets it out completely!

    • Jessica says

      I was shocked and showed him in the mirror, saying \”look what you did!\” he smiled and said \”now I\’m a tiger.\” So he wasn\’t remotely concerned. We were actually heading out the door so I had to take him on a playdate that way. I think everyone at the park was scared.

  88. says

    I just bookmarked this because although we haven’t had an “incident” yet, I know it’s only a matter of time!

    BTW, I have zero tips to share on removing anything, although I did discover Goo Gone many years ago and it’s a go-to for removing sticky stickers/price tags from just about everything.
    Tonya recently posted..Riding In Cars With Boys

    • Jessica says

      We did good for a little while and then right around age 3 he started coloring on everything in sight.

  89. Lane says

    Oh my goodness! I definitely need to bookmark this post! My daughter colors on EVERYTHING, ALL THE TIME! She hasn’t used a permanent marker yet, but she has used crayons, pencils, pens and markers, so I’m sure something like a permanent marker isn’t far behind. I have blogged so many times about the stuff she’s colored on, including todays post. lol I guess all kids do some of the same naughty stuff.

    My one tip for stain removal is to have microfiber furniture. So far everything wipes right off of it, including black pen!

  90. says

    I’m also impressed by how much effort it must have required to get it all out. Good for you! But dayum–that sounds like a lot of work!

    Great tips though :)

  91. says

    My sister’s kids colored on the walls of my house a couple years ago. They then continued to color themselves. I don’t remember what I used to get it off the walls and the kids but it worked.
    Jessica recently posted..When I Am Drowning

  92. says

    Thank you for sharing the tips! Top two…Mr Clean’s Eraser rocks and tea tree oil. I will admit, I giggled seeing the tiger eyebrows, my little artist here, has done the same thing. Except she didn’t do it with PERMANENT MARKER! Ack Mama!
    Erica recently posted..It Hurts

  93. The Anecdotal Baby says

    I like that you’re looking on the bright side! Thanks for the tips… I’ll have to keep these handy for when Lovebug reaches that stage if I forget to put up the markers!
    The Anecdotal Baby recently posted..Tuning In At An Early Age

    • Jessica says

      If you have tiger eyebrows in your next blog post I will know exactly where you got them from (and I will ship you some tea tree oil).

  94. Courtney @ The Mommy Matters says

    My kiddo got ahold of permanent marker in my MIL’s house last summer (her fault…) and drew all over her white cabinets and stove. After I got over laughing at him, the toothpaste and magic eraser did most of the work.
    Courtney @ The Mommy Matters recently posted..Rockabye Baby…

    • Jessica says

      This is one of those laugh-so-you-don\’t-cry messes. The best part is he did it right as we were heading out the door so I had to take him somewhere looking like a tiger.

    • Jessica says

      The vinegar worked instantly, just soak it really well then throw a towel over it and step on the towel, it lifts the marker right out (but smells!).

  95. says

    well good to know for sure. I wonder if some of these would work on nail polish, as child #2 decided to decorate the carpet and walls with that the other day.
    once when I was still running an at-home art business, that same #2 child took a Sharpie and scribbled all over a completed custom painting. I hate permanent markers!
    Jeanette recently posted..Iphone Photo Phun – In Which I Show Favoritism

    • Jessica says

      Oh my gosh, a custom painting? That is awful. I bet the alcohol would work on the nail polish, or hair spray.

  96. says

    Awesome tips! I usually use the magic marker, when an “accident” occurs. lol I use tea tree oil in my daughter hair once a week as well. It’s an old wives tail that it keeps lice away from a childs head. It has worked so far!!

    A Mother’s Thoughts recently posted..Is Shivery Dead?

    • Jessica says

      I don\’t know, mine is almost 4 and I\’m still waiting. He just can\’t seem to stay out of trouble.

  97. says

    My best stain removal tip is to replace the carpets, which we just did, because I’m not as patient as you are with the white vinegar, tooth paste, and Mr. Clean! (-:
    Ado recently posted..A Work of Art

    • Jessica says

      You know what works great? Any kind of laundry stain remover. I found marker on a white dresser yesterday and sprayed it with Spray and Wash and it worked better than anything else.

    • Joanne Jones says

      Try a product called Googone. It takes crayons of in a snap, might work for wax too. Just spray or wipe on and wipe off.

  98. Sarah says

    Husband got a good laugh out of this one. I on the other hand know we may need these tips one day.
    Tip to get nail polish out of white carpet: DO NOT USE nailpolish remover. Go straight for warm water, bleach and dish soap in a spray bottle.

    • Jessica says

      Yep, I showed him in the mirror and said \”look at your face!\” He, of course, smiled and said, now I look like a tiger.

      • Joanne Jones says

        To remove perment marker from a child skin is easy with whitening tootpaste. Smear the toothpaste on so that you cover the spot completely, wait a couple of minutes and wipe off with a warm very wet rag. I have never had to do more than two applications. I am comfortable using this on small children. They think it is funny.

    • kdc says

      try covering it with a paper towel and heat with an iron…this draws the crayon into the paper towel…I had to use this method on candle wax

    • Joanne Jones says

      To remove crayon from almost any hard surface use a product called Googone. you can buy it almost everywhere. It is mostly orange oil. works on painted surfaces too; just spray it on or put it on you rag and it wipes right off no scrubbing required.

    • Gail says

      I had a home-daycare for years. One day after a budding artist put a “mural” on my wall my daughter age 6 at the time said, “Mommy just erase it” and it worked!! After that, art work was removed by a simple pencil eraser! Works on walls and on wood.

    • Tammy says

      On a smooth shiny, surface color over permanent marker with a dry erase marker. It works like magic.

      Also, nail polish remover works great too,