Nail polish remove can stain your wooden furniture if it gets spilled. Because it may have attacked the finish, it can be difficult to remove the stain. This is a guide about fixing a wood table with a nail polish remover stain.
Regarding nail polish remover spilled on real wood table. Yes! The hot iron with white washcloth worked WONDERS! I was stunned!
By Jojo from Texas
My daughter spilt nail varnish remover on our small table. The stain is white and very rough; what can I do to put it right? The table is made of yew, and highly polished.
January 11, 2012
Since this was nail polish remover, it has done to the table what it was meant to do to your nails; removed (or at least ruffled) the finish. So the sanding and refinishing will be necessary. Probably the whole table top since you will probably never be able to match the refinished area to the rest of the tabletop.
An alternative to consider is painting instead of staining the wood. Being sure to sand with the grain of the wood, get the roughness restored to as smooth as possible. If you have to spot sand too much, you may create a dip of sorts in the surface. So sand the rest of the tabletop as well, at least the surrounding areas...always with the grain, never against. Then paint the table top with a complimentary paint color. Painting is much easier to do as well as it covers the affected spot better than any stain would especially since you may not be able to sand far enough down to get all the original stain/finish off.
January 11, 2012
I just reread your post that the table is yew. Painting is probably the least desired effect you are wanting. The high polish is just a very thick layer of clear varnish. The whiteness is the result of the remover trying to break it down (so it could be removed).
Sanding will work, but a faster solution might be to strip the entire surface of the table chemically with a paint or varnish stripper product available most anywhere. Then redo that thick coat of clear varnish.
It may be worth it to seek out a professional furniture refinisher to do this work to get the best result for the beautiful yew wood.
How do I remove nail polish remover from a wooden table?
By Mary Lou D.
August 21, 2012
Polish remover actually eats through the finish of the wood so there is no "removing" the spot. You can probably camoflauge it with something like Old English.
I spilled finger nail polish remover on my wood table. Is there anything I can do to restore the finish?
August 10, 2012
Really, the only thing you can do is to refinish the whole top. Sand it down good and reapply some polyurethane. Being the klutz that I am, I have now refinished my coffee table 3 times! LOL
August 11, 2012
If your top is veneer, please do not sand your table. You could ruin it completely. Carefully remove the finish on the table top with one of the commercial products offered at the hardware or other stores. DO NOT let it drip on other parts of the table or you will end up having to redo the whole table. Your best advice will come from the store personnel who know "how to" restore your table.
You will have several other steps to this process to return your table to useable condition.
My little girl spilled nail polish remover on our big new wood table. Now there is a big white bumpy spot on the table. She spilled almost the whole bottle! Our grandma is here; our dad is on vacation! What is he going to do? What should we do about our brand new table, to make is just like we just bought it?
February 9, 2014
There is no option for this but to strip the whole area wether it is a leg or a top. Then you will have to decide how to refinish the item. Proffessionally is the best solution but is the most expensive as many of these finishes are french polished which tales some considerable skill to do. others are a lacquer sprayed on in layers.
The main problem is in colour matching and may require mixing different shades to get the desired effect. If yuo are determined to DIY then please got to your library get some books on the subject then practice on some similar timber or veneered woods. starting French Polishing is simple and just requires brushing but the hand finishing takes a delicate touch and some practice to achieve that glass like finish. Best I can offer in the circumstances . good luck. john m.
I dropped a bottle of nail polish on our tile floor and it splattered on the leg of our table. My hubby used nail polish remover before I could tell him no and now there are dull lighter white spots, almost like a water stains, on the wood and the varnish is gone. I called Pottery Barn and of course nobody can remember the name of the varnish since it is an older piece.
Should I just varnish it with clear and leave the spots? I have heard about the iron method, but I am scared. I feel so horrible I want to cry about my floor and my table! Thanks for all your help!
By lacullinane from Omaha
August 6, 2010
You have stripped the stain with the nail polish remover. Look for products in the paint store for spot touch ups. They may have something that will fix the spot. Sadly, I think you are going to have to refinish the whole table top to get a good match.
How can I remove a nail polish remover mark from my table?
By Palika from Rancho Cucamonga
July 18, 2013
In my experience nail polish remover takes off the finish of things, so you don't want to "remove" the mark, but to cover it or restore the original finish. We would have to know what your table is made of in order to help you with that. It may not be possible to repair it. I dropped some nail polish remover on the waistline of fake suede dress; there was no way to fix the mark as it removed the fuzziness. A friend suggested I tie the belt in the front and put a broach on it to cover the mark. Worked well. Otherwise, the dress was ruined.
How do you remove a nail polish remover stain from a dark wood kitchen table?
November 9, 2014
I have found it impossible to remove it. The chemicals dissolve and dry with the finish on the wood. So you need to refinish the table top, removing the current finish and restaining and refinishing. Or just learn to live with it. It is a real job, but wood refinishing is a rewarding if messy hobby.
I have spilt nail varnish remover on my mum's oak table and it has left a big white mark down the leg. Any suggestions?
January 5, 2014
Well I got told to put mayonnaise and ashes on the table and let it sit for 5 minutes, then gently rub it into the stain with a cloth (which should also help to remove the ashes and mayonnaise.
Next wet a cloth and put some soap on the table, then rinse the table and let it dry well.
Then pour 4 Tbsp's of wood oil onto the stain, then rub it all in. Then it sit for 10 minutes, and wash the table again with the soapy cloth.
Then get another cloth and dampen it slightly and put it over the stain. Put an iron onto the cloth (using high heat) and rub it in a slow circular motion, keep checking your stain. DO NOT let the iron sit or it will burn it more!
Hope it helps xx
How do I get nail polish remover off a wood table? It took the finish off, how do I get it?
By Jessica S.
April 25, 2013
I'm sorry to say, there is no 'getting it off' because the nail polish remover has removed the finish on that surface. You're going to need to re-stain and then re-varnish at least the spot that has been stripped by the nail polish remover.
There are several products in the paint aisles of any big-box store (WalMart, Target, Home Depot, etc) or you can go to a dedicated paint store (Benjamin Moore, etc). Staff at any of the stores should be able to help you match the stain and find the small cans of the stain and varnish.
The stores will also have free info and instructions brochures to help you get a good application that will last a long time.
What can I do to fix where I spilt fingernail polish remover?
How do I repair the mahogany wood table? I spilled nail polish remover on it.
By Tina D
So I spilt a small amount of nail varnish remover on a light oak dining table. The patch went really pale. I read up on here about mixing mayo with ash so I did that, left it overnight and now it';s gone really dark and into the grains and is looking worse than before! Any ideas how I can fix this?
I spilled half a bottle of nail polish remover onto the dining table. I tried to get it off by wiping with paper towels. Some stuck onto the surface. Then I tried scrubbing it off which made marks and scratches on the surface of the table. Any easy way to fix this?
I've got several drops of nail varnish remover with one large one on my oak table. Any ideas on how I can treat this? Thank you. Maria
By Maria M. 1
How long do I apply hot iron with white cloth to wood table?
By Maria M. from Asheville, NC
By M Lees 1
How do I fix a varnished table with a nail varnish remover stain?
M Lees from Cumbria
My daughter spilled nail polish remover (acetone) on my kitchen table, and then wiped it up. My table now has a large cloudy, rough area where the remover ate through the finish on the wood table. Are there any ideas on how to fix this, or am I stuck replacing this table or having it refinished? Help, the table is only 1 1/2 years old!
Try rubbing cigarette ashes with a dab of mayonnaise on it. (06/22/2005)
I have a bedroom dresser that also has nail polish remover damage on it. I called a furniture refinisher, who came to my home & he said that he would have to wet sand it & then refinish the top of the bureau so as to make it all the same color @ a cost of $150. I decided to put a bureau scarf on the area. Can you use a tablecloth? Or do you have a lot of elbow grease to sand the top of the table? In any event, good luck (06/22/2005)
Let mayonnaise sit on it for about an hour, wipe off and the put 2 or 3 paper towels folded in half on top of the mark and then run an iron over top a few times. Lift the paper towel to see if there is any change. If it is just starting then continue ironing and after about 4 strokes over the spot look under the paper towel to check progress. (11/30/2005)
I just split nail polish remover on my boyfriends coffee table! I am trying the mayo trick ..Hope it works! I hope he still has some Christmas spirit left. (12/26/2005)
I just used the ashes with a dab of mayo and it looks 100% better, it's not completely gone but it's also not completely noticeable like it was. Thanks for the tip. (08/18/2006)
Hi I was wondering if anyone knew the history of Nail Polish remover, like when nail polish remover was first used, and what was the reason for using the product.
Editor's Note: Nail polish remover is made of acetone or a non acetone solvent. It was first developed (polish remover) to remove nail polish but the chemicals in it have been used as solvents for much longer.
I'd look up acetone and the other ingredients in nail polish remover and look them up individually. (12/03/2006)
Where do you get these ideas? ashes? (12/16/2006)
By You people
I accidentally spilt Nail Polish Remover on my moms dresser which is wood, and she was so mad, and I don't know what to do. Please Help Me (03/12/2007)
Oh my gosh, I was freaking out but I just tried the mayo and ashes trick on my coffee table because I spilled nail polish remover at it is already making a difference after a few minutes. Thanks so much! This is the only place I found that had any advice other than getting the table refinished. Its amazing! (06/16/2007)
Try washing it with hot water and soap a few times so the remover doesn't sink farther into the wood. If that doesn't work than try mayo. (06/20/2007)
Can someone clarify the cleaning of the nail polish remover from the surface of a wooden coffee table. I read above to use mayo and ashes, but how EXACTLY do you use it?
PLEASE, someone help me. This seems to be the most useful website I have found yet. (07/09/2007)
Hello my daughter spilled nail polish remover on my 6 mos. old wood table help (07/10/2007)
Oh, oh. I should have looked at this site first. My daughter spilled nail polish on the table, and I used nail polish remover to remove it. It removed the nail polish and the finish, now i have a huge cloudy stain on my table, and still hiding it from my husband. HELP (08/28/2007)
I have accidentally put Nail Polish Remover on my Microwave Oven. It formed white cloudy patches on the black plastic as well as silver colored body. How do I remove them? Does someone has any tip?
My Mom bought a brand new white gloss table which cost in and around £500. I actually put pen on it before, and I panicked and put white nail tip nail polish on top. I'm scared to try anything else, and after many attempts to cover it up, my mom found out and I'm grounded for two weeks. (09/16/2007)
I also have nail polish remover damage on my kitchen table. how can I touch it up? (10/08/2007)
I have nail polish remover damage on my table. I need help touching it up. I called a professional, too expensive.
Linda from Fort Worth
I used nail polish remover to clean the stains my daughter left behind with nail polish. I got a huge area of cloudy white stain. I followed the advice here - put a dab of mayo and rub in some ashes and just use a sponge to rub into the stain. It sure looks much better.
Thank you so much! I couldn't sleep all night because of my stupid mistake. (10/20/2007)
I was just soaking my nails in nail polish remover to get my acrylic nails off. and I just spilled the whole bottle on my mom's wooden table, I quickly tried to get if off w/ a towel, and it ends up taking the finish off of the wood. I panicked and waited for my parents to leave and I went to go get wood re finisher and lightly dabbed some on the spots. It looks a LITTLE better, still noticeable though. (12/05/2007)
We put mayo just let it sit there. Your table might smell like mayo, but it gives it a glossy shine and it works. (01/05/2008)
Mayonnaise doesn't work. I tried 'colron repair, ring remover'. Leave on for about half an hour and it works. Stain is totally gone. (01/29/2008)
Mayo worked for me, left it on 30 minutes, wiped it off, and presto, the mark is gone. (03/07/2008)
Use mayo! (06/14/2008)
By random guy
Here is what worked for me after I spilled nail polish remover all over my beautiful wooden table:
First, I mixed ammonia with hot water and washed the table with it, squeezing extra water over the stains. Then, I used a steel wool pad to scrub the stains, which seemed to help clear them up. After everything had been scrubbed well, I cleaned the table again with the ammonia and water. Once it was dry, I dribbled baby oil over the places where the stains were and let it sit there for an hour before wiping it up. The table looks great, and I thought it had been ruined.
I hope this helps someone else in that situation.
I put a bottle of nail polish remover on the dining room table earlier and it made a mark and I panicked and put it on another part of the table and it made another mark.....bad. I tried the mayo and it worked. Though it has not got rid of the mark completely. Oh well. My mum is cool with it. Try the mayo trick though. IT WORKS! (10/26/2008)
How do I remove a nail varnish remover stain from a varnished table?
Last time one of my girls did that, I just sanded the table top and re varnished it. It's not that hard to do! (11/04/2008)
I've just spilled nail polish remover over my 'rents wooden coffee table, trying the mayo trick as we speak. Hope it works! (12/11/2008)
Does anyone know how to get nail varnish remover out of an oak veneer table?
Susie from UK
My parents had gone out to dinner and sitting at my dad's beloved finished wood computer desk, I was removing my nail polish. Accidentally, the nail polish remover was knocked over, onto the mouse, onto my cell phone, onto the mouse pad and most importantly the desk. I quickly grabbed a roll of paper towels and wiped off the remover from the desk.
**NOTE: DO NOT WIPE! Dab it up, because wiping it spreads the stain and removes MORE of the finish. After getting most of it up, I wet down some paper towels and cleaned it off the best I could. Like the other responses say, I slathered mayo all over the desk. My parents got home and I explained what happened. The mayo I used was low fat.
We decided the fat was what helped so we added olive oil and, like the other responses said, ashes (from the fireplace). We mixed it all up on top of the stain and left it for about an hour. After wiping up the mayo-olive oil-fireplace ash mixture, the desk looked much better. Less noticeable, but not gone. (01/02/2009)
Thank you so much, mayo kinda worked. Tip: Do not try scratching it off first. Once the stain is gone, the scratches will remain! I learned the hard way. (02/20/2009)
I am trying the mayo and ash trick as I type, I'm desperately hoping it will work. There seems to be a lot of positive feedback on this site. My fingers are crossed. (02/22/2009)
Use an iron over a paper towel for 10 seconds and it will be gone from your wooden table! Mayo did not work for, me but this did. (07/22/2009)
We had permanent marker on our expensive oak tabletop. My wife used nail varnish remover to remove it, but it's now left 3 dull marks on the table. How do we repair this to make it look right again?
By GAZB from UK
A professional would sand it down to bare wood and start over. If you can't do that, then first you have to find out if the oak is oiled, varnished, lacquered or has a plastic / epoxy coating.
If it is oiled, get some Swedish Furniture Oil and let some soak into the dull spots, then wipe the whole table down with it.
If it is varnish, you will need to find some old fashioned, turpentine based spar varnish. Dab some on sparingly and wipe it with a cloth. Repeat the next day and the day after. The trick is to build it up slowly to the right level and shine.
It probably is not a lacquer or a two component epoxy, but if it is, it will always look a bit different, no matter what you do. In that case you might as well rent a belt sander and sand down the top. Never move the sander in the direction of the belt. It will gouge! Always move it at a right or almost right angle to the belt, and if possible in the same direction as the grain of the wood. Then use an oak filler and lightly sand it after it is dry, and top it with your choice of finish. My personal choice is old fashioned spar varnish. Have fun! (08/26/2009)
My daughter got nail polish remover on our cherry wood table and it removed the finish. What is the best way to get the finish back? Are there any cleaning supplies that will bring the finish back or make it not so obvious?
By andreandave from Lancaster, PA
I once spilled some isopropyl alcohol on my tabletop and it messed up the varnish :-( I washed the entire table vigorously with soap and water and then used a rag to wipe a good amount of sesame oil on and around the spot, let it sit until the oil completely soaked in to the damaged portion and then lightly wiped the table with a soap and water rag. You can still see the damage, but it's very faint.
About the only other thing you can do is sand and re-varnish. There are lots of other ideas in the ThriftyFun archives below. (03/25/2010)
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By Jojo from Bouctouche, NB
There are oodles of suggestions and ideas in the archives below. Sadly, it's going to take some type of refinishing to repair. :-( (08/06/2010)
You have stripped the stain with the nail polish remover. Look for products in the paint store for spot touch ups. They may have something that will fix the spot. Sadly, I think you are going to have to refinish the whole table top. to get a good match. (08/06/2010)
To whoever suggested mayonnaise with ashes, thank you! I just created an account to post my testimonial. I spilled nail polish remover on my deceased father's desk four years ago and have always just put a cloth over the surface. I finally found this tip and it drastically reduced the cloudy white stain. I smeared mayo over the surface, sprinkled ashes from the fireplace over the top, and then buffed until it was dry. Thank you so much! (08/19/2010)
Forget about mayo or refinishing your table.
I just figure out the easiest most affective way to do it (and believe me, I tried it all).
Here is an explanation of why it works: the heat of the iron dilates the wood grain, and also evaporates the nail polish which is very volatile.
Don't let the iron sit on top of the wood for too long, it will damage the wood grain and burn your table.
I hope it works on tables with different finishings. I know it worked on mine.
Hope that helps lots of people staining my table with wood polish was so frustrating! (02/01/2011)
fetafonseca's suggestion with the dry iron worked great for me. I spilled some candle wax on a laminated chocolate brown table and tried some nail polish remover to get ride of it. What a mistake! The stain was still there plus, now, a god awful white stain.
Following fetafonseca suggestion, I used a dry iron over a clean cloth and and the white stain (and the wax!) disappeared.
Note: I first used a facecloth with a line-texture in it and it imprinted the texture on my table. I then switched to a clean plain tea towel and everything was fine! (02/14/2011)