12 Ways To Remove Ink Stains | Proven methods

A leaking rod, as well as an accidentally left mark from a fountain pen or print on clothing, can become a serious problem – removing ink stains is very difficult. But only if you do not know how and how to display them. There are many ways to remove this kind of contamination in books on home economics or on the Internet. But not all of them show good results. Our experts have tested each of the existing methods. We suggest that you familiarize yourself with the results of their verification to find out the most effective ways to remove ink stains.

Basic rules for removing ink

Basic rules for removing ink

Ink in fountain pens, seals or stamps is produced on a water-glycerin basis or a dispersed medium with a solvent and alcohol. Contains a color pigment that is insoluble in water. The ink tends to penetrate strongly and quickly into various surfaces (they have strong adhesion to materials), so it is so difficult to get rid of them. Conventional detergents (soap, powder, washing gel) cannot remove them – it is necessary to use substances that dissolve the base and the pigment.

Most fountain pen ink is water-soluble, so contact with water can cause the ink to spread over the surface. Therefore, it is not recommended to wet clothes stained with ink.

You must follow the rules:

  1. Sprinkle the ink stain with starch, chalk or talcum powder. The powder not only absorbs some of the pigment, but also prevents it from spreading.

  2. Before washing, be sure to remove dirt, otherwise the ink will spread over the surface of the clothes.

  3. It is advisable to remove spilled ink from clothing immediately. Old traces are much more difficult to remove.

  4. Clean the contaminated area from the edges to the center. This will help avoid divorce. To prevent them, you can also sprinkle talcum powder or starch around the edges.

  5. When removing ink blot, put a napkin or rag folded several times under the treated area of ​​fabric. The rule must be observed when removing dirt from trousers or sleeves, otherwise an ink print will appear on the other side.

  6. Test the cleaning agent on an inconspicuous area of ​​clothing. If the color of the fabric or its structure has not changed, you can use it to clean clothes.

  7. When applying dye-dissolving cleaning agents in ballpoint pens, there is no need to wait – remove the stain immediately without allowing the solvent to dry.

  8. When removing contamination with aggressive agents, gloves and a respirator should be used. Protect children and allergy sufferers from inhalation of these substances. It is advisable to carry out processing with an open window or in the fresh air.

Compliance with these rules will protect clothes from damage during processing and preserve health.

12 ways to remove ink stains

12 ways to remove ink stains

The staff of our magazine found 12 ways to remove ink stains. We decided to test them to name the most effective remedy for removing this kind of dirt.

Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide solution 3% is a versatile agent that removes contaminants of various origins. As our experts have found out, the product also copes well with ink stains. You need to apply a few drops directly to the ink mark and rub the stained area with a cotton swab or swab until it disappears completely.

Advantages of the method:

  1. removes fresh dirt well;

  2. inexpensive and affordable (you can buy at any pharmacy at a price of 12-18 rubles per 100 ml);

  3. odorless, harmless to health.


  1. not suitable for colored items (hydrogen peroxide has bleaching properties);

  2. copes poorly with old tracks.

Hydrogen peroxide has shown a good result – it can be used to remove ink.


The most popular remedy for ink blotting is alcohol. Many ink in fountain pens and seals are alcohol-based, so any product that contains alcohol will dissolve the pigment and easily remove the stain. It must be applied to the contaminated area and rubbed with a cotton pad or stick. The ink will begin to fade before our eyes, and after a few seconds, there will be no trace of it.


  1. dissolves the ink trail in a matter of minutes;

  2. available – can be bought at any pharmacy;

  3. can be used on both white and colored items;

  4. copes with old stains.

Disadvantages: not found.

To remove ink from clothes, you can use any alcohol-containing agent: eau de toilette, hairspray, vodka, various tinctures. It is convenient to wipe off stains with alcohol wipes.

Stain remover (like 'Vanish', ACE)

Stain remover Vanish

Stain removers remove stains of different origins. Do they remove ink stains? Our experts have tested their cleaning properties on fresh and old fountain pen marks.

The method of application is the same – apply the product to the stain and rub with a cotton pad. If necessary, leave it for a while – 15-20 minutes and thoroughly clean it again.


  1. removes fresh ink stains well;

  2. has a pleasant smell;

  3. sold for both white and colored items


  1. poorly removes old dirt;

  2. expensive (120-700 rubles per 500 ml);

  3. may cause allergic reactions;

  4. use with caution on synthetic fabrics.

Special household detergents remove ink stains, but only fresh. Compared to home methods, it is much more expensive for the price.

Vinegar and vinegar essence

On the Internet, we came across recipes in which ink stains are advised to remove 7% with table vinegar. We checked – vinegar does not remove such contamination. Even after prolonged exposure to the stained area (after 1 hour) and subsequent intensive cleaning with a toothbrush, the stain remains. Maybe it just brightened a little.

Experts decided to test also the effectiveness of vinegar essence 70%. She, compared to vinegar, coped well with the ink blot.


  1. the essence removes ink well;

  2. affordable and affordable;

  3. can be used to clean colored and white items.


  1. not suitable for delicate fabrics;

  2. unpleasant odor;

  3. working without gloves can burn your skin.

Vinegar essence can be used to treat ink marks if no other remedies are on hand anymore. The vinegar will not remove the stains left by the ballpoint pen.



Ammonia (ammonia) is also widely used in everyday life to remove various contaminants. Our experts applied a few drops to the ink stain and rubbed it with a cotton swab. The blot slowly but surely began to fade, leaving blue streaks, which also had to be processed later. Ammonia could not cope with old traces from a fountain pen.


  1. removes fresh ink blots;

  2. affordable and inexpensive (can be purchased at any pharmacy for 15-20 rubles).


not suitable for removing stains from delicate fabrics;

has a specific pungent odor;

leaves streaks.

The ammonia removes fresh ink stains, but leaves behind streaks and an unpleasant odor.

Micellar water

The method of removing various stains with micellar water among the people is not yet as common as hydrogen peroxide or vinegar, but in vain. The special substances in this cosmetic cleanser are excellent at attracting impurities, as it turned out, not only on the face. A few drops of micellar water dripped onto the ink trail dissolved it without difficulty, like alcohol.


  1. quickly dissolves ink without leaving any residue;

  2. can be used for white and colored items, for delicate and natural fabrics;

  3. almost every girl or woman who uses cosmetics can find at home.

No flaws were found.

Glycerin and sodium tetrarborate

Since some ballpoint pens are water-glycerin-based, glycerin may remove marks from them. This method of removing impurities is found in books on home economics. But glycerin did not work on the ink that was used in our experts' experiment. The stain did not go away even after half an hour of contact with it and thorough cleaning with a toothbrush.

Glycerin does not help remove marks from a regular ballpoint pen. The product based on it, sodium tetrarborate, also showed no result.


On the other hand, solvent 646 is very effective for removing ink blots. Dissolves them quickly and without streaks. The only drawback is that it cannot be used for cleaning colored fabrics, synthetics and delicate items.

Toothpaste or shaving foam

remove ink with toothpaste

There is always paste or foam in the house, so they can be used in an emergency if there is nothing else. But neither the one nor the other will completely get rid of the marks of the fountain pen – the spots will become lighter, but still noticeable.


  1. are found in every home;

  2. absorb pigment, making the stain less visible;

  3. Helps prevent ink from drying out to make it easier to remove with other means.

  4. can be used on all fabrics.


  1. do not remove traces left by fountain pens to the end, require additional cleaning methods.

  2. Toothpaste or shaving foam can be used as an emergency remedy to remove ink spills on clothing. They do not completely remove stains.

Dishwashing liquid

'Fairy' or 'Sort' perfectly removes fresh traces and blots. The liquid must be dripped onto the stained place (you cannot wet it or dilute with water), wait 3-5 minutes and rub it – the ink will dissolve. All that remains is to rinse the area with clean water from the foam or wash this thing.


  1. found in any home;

  2. effectively removes fresh ballpoint pen marks;

  3. safe for all fabrics, for white and colored items.


  1. requires subsequent washing or rinsing the foam thoroughly with water;

  2. poorly removes old dirt.

Dishwashing detergents work great on fresh ink stains, but removing old ones will take time and considerable effort.


Whiteness removes almost any stains from the surface of clothing. Ink is no exception. The main disadvantage is that it can only be used for cleaning white and cotton fabrics. Colored things, as well as synthetic, woolen or silk, whiteness will spoil irrevocably.

Fermented milk drinks

Fermented milk drinks

To remove ink blots, you can use milk serum or kefir (yogurt). They contain lactic acid, which has whitening properties. It is recommended to soak the soiled item for 1-2 hours in a fermented milk drink (or pour it on a dirty place), then rub it with a toothbrush. The stain will not come off completely, but after washing with powder, there will be no trace of it.

Advantages of the method:

  1. safe for tissue and health;

  2. suitable for delicate fabrics.


  1. does not remove stains without a trace, requires additional cleaning methods.

Soaking a soiled item in kefir or whey can be considered an emergency method in case of spilled ink, which will prevent them from being deeply absorbed into the fibers and facilitate further removal.

Expert opinion

Examination has shown that not all of the 12 found ways to remove ink stains from clothing are effective. Some, for example, glycerin, vinegar, sodium tetrarborate, showed no result.

They weakly remove ink marks and require additional processing:

  1. Toothpaste;

  2. shaving foam;

  3. serum;

  4. kefir.

Fresh dirt can be successfully removed with:

  1. dishwashing liquid;

  2. stain removers;

  3. vinegar essence;

  4. hydrogen peroxide;

  5. ammonia.

Best for removing ink stains:

  1. alcohol;

  2. alcohol-containing liquids;

  3. solvent 646;

  4. micellar water;

  5. white.

All of the listed products are suitable for removing marks from white and cotton items. Colored items can only be cleaned with alcohol and micellar water.

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