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Removing Ink from a Table


I am looking for information for removing permanent ink mark from wood/finish coffee table.

By Marlene from Kauai, HI


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By Karen 1 04/01/2010 Flag

Try using a cheap hairspray, like Aquanet, works for getting ink out of clothes, might work on wood.

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By Maddle 1 05/20/2010 Flag

Baking soda! While I was on the phone with my sister reading to her the different responses, she was trying the baking soda and she interrupted me with, "Oh, M, this is amazing the ink came right up!"

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By Lisa 1 06/24/2010 Flag

Wow it worked! I was upset that my kids got marker on my wood (finished) dining room table and I tried the baking soda that was recommended. I made a paste and rubbed it on the areas and wiped with a paper towel and it came right up. Thank you for the suggestions.

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By Angela 1 12/31/2010 Flag

Thank you for the suggestion everyone! The baking soda worked!! An ink pen exploded on our brand new wood table, it set overnight (the pen must've exploded in the middle of the night) and the baking soda paste took it right out! We just used our fingertip and rubbed with the grain of the wood, it got lighter and lighter and eventually came out!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

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By James 1 02/01/2011 Flag

I couldn't see the feedback which stated how to use the baking soda. But I read through some of the rest of the feedback and tried using deodorant. Which was to take pink permanent pen off of bedroom furniture including wood and metal. This worked a treat! Phew!

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By Redcat33 1 10/19/2011 Flag

I discovered that a red ink pen had exploded in one of my wire pen holders. It was sitting on my light oak desk and the ink had been there for so long that it had dried. I tried to get it up with alcohol and some of it did come off but it was all soaked down into the varnish and just as red after the alcohol as before. I kept wiping till the rag came back clean but the ink was firmly set. I then tried hydrogen peroxide-nothing. I tried dishwashing soap suds. I tried practically everything I could get my hands on except gasoline. Nothing!

I even put mayonnaise on it and let it soak for 10 days-nothing! By this time I am eying the gallon of mower gas. I saw this site and said " What the heck, I'll try their ideas. I really have nothing to lose." So I went into the kitchen got down the baking soda, made the paste with water and began scrubbing. Right away the baking soda turned pink! I added more and scrubbed more and the ink was, in fact, coming up. I couldn't believe it! So with much elbow (or finger actually) grease the red ink is gone. Now I just have what looks like a water ring on the wood. But like I said this ink had been on there since the dinosaurs. The water ring is much preferable.

I am going to let it dry overnight and see what happens. If it is not gone by morning. I think the actual wood got wet from the thinning of the varnish and that this is now indeed a water mark-then I will treat it as a water mark and see if the ring goes away. Stay tuned for further developments. I did not try the miracle clean sponge. I did try the toothpaste before with no results.

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By Aliceh 1 01/01/2012 Flag

Baking soda is amazing it totally works. I used it because someone spilled a drink on the table and then put a newspaper on it and it bled in to the table the ink. So I tried the alcohol and the the baking powder. Thank you.

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By agichu 1 09/15/2012 Flag

My daughter and her friend stained my table with craft paints. I tried several things to remove. Baking soda did not work for me. However I tried an air freshener. Sprayed over the stain and rubbed and this actually removed the stain totally. Thanks all for your tips!

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11/27/2012 Flag

OMG! Hairspray, it works perfectly. I tried everything on this list and nothing worked except hairspray. It literally makes it disappear. Thanks guys, now my parents won't kill me!

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Archive: Removing Ballpoint Pen Ink from Table

I am trying to remove ballpoint ink from kitchen table that is either white wood or white corian? What should I use not to destroy the white finish of the table?


- - 03/18/2003
Readers always say that hairspray is the best thing to remove ball point pen. I don't think that would destroy your top but you could try it first in an out of the way place to make sure. Also rubbing baking soda into it with your finger is a safe option. I'll post this to the site and see if anyone else has any ideas.

Best Wishes,

By Thrifty_Fun
- - 01/16/2005
Just had this problem with a ballpoint pen that leaked all of its ink onto an oak table top. It had been there for at least 48 hours before we discovered the mess. Read your feedback above and choose to go with Bold. I put it on and let it soak for 5 minutes before rubbing off. It took 4 applications but it ALL came off. Be careful to not rub so hard as to remove the finish. I did not, but came close.
By Cary Anthony (Guest Post)
- - 11/13/2005
When I got blue ball point ink on my father's new desk I looked on this website and tried baking soda, then experimented a little and added methylated spirits (rubbing alcohol) to it and the stain is nearly invisible.


By Sam (Guest Post)
Removing "Sharpie" Permanent Marker from dark wood table 11/29/2005
I suggest to you use baking soda alone with a drop of water on affected area. Rub it with cloth, it really works! I just removed the ink on my dark wood table today.
By Lea (Guest Post)
- - 12/04/2005
I just used baking soda with a little water and rubbed the ink spot with my finger and out it came off of my new oak table. It worked for the green marker that was on the table also! My kids were doing their Christmas cards when they got ink and marker on the table. I found this site as nothing else I tried would get the marks out. And I can't believe how the baking soda worked! I am so lucky I found this website. Have a Merry Christmas!
By Kaitlyn (Guest Post)
- - 12/11/2005
Thank you for all your help. I thought our $5000 Corian countertop was ruined when my 4 year old daughter took a "Sharpie" permanent marker to the countertop. Well after trying everything other than sanding it down, I saw the suggestion here about Baking Soda. It really did the trick. There isn't even a hint of the marker left now. Thanks again.
By Hunt (Guest Post)
Removing kids paint from the dining room table 12/14/2005
I am in dire need of a solution on how to remove this paint from my dining room table. It looks like I started to rub a little too hard and I don't want the varnish to come off. Any suggestions?
By Lisa (Guest Post)
- - 12/15/2005

It depends on what type of paint is on the table. If it's a kid-type paint, like tempera or basic finger paints, plain old soap and water should take it up. It may require some elbow grease and time. Or you could try a multipurpose cleaner, I love the Fantastic OxyPower, it's nontoxic and pretty cheap and works. I would also try rubbing alcohol, it seems to work on just about everything ink or paint related. If it's an oil based paint nothing but a paint remover will take up the stains and that will remove the varnish.

If its an older table you may just be getting up all the layers of buildup that seem to accumulate no matter how much we clean and not effecting the varnish at all. And one more bit ... if it's a wood table and older, why not try stripping it and refinishing it when you have the time, we ended up doing that with our bathroom cabinets after the shaving cream my daughter painted on left marks on the 75 year old cherry wood!

Good Luck!

By Madelynnsmama
- - 12/20/2005
This is a little off subject but my two year old daughter wrote on my $600 monitor, which has a very delicate surface. I freaked out and went online and read the comment that said use hair spray to remove pen ink and it worked perfectly. I thought for sure it was ruined but the hair spray took it right off with no damage to the surface at all. Not sure if it would work on a table but I wanted to say THANKS!
By adam (Guest Post)
- - 12/24/2005
My daughter used some sort of ink to paint her toy and some got on oak kitchen table. I tried using oxy clean with orange but didn't get 100% - then used baking soda with warm water and it worked.
By DB (Guest Post)
- - 01/07/2006
My son drew with ballpoint pen on caramel color maple desk. Tried WD40, no luck. Tried hairspray, no luck. Then read advice here and used baking soda. I put baking soda in small bowl with a little warm water. I dipped my finger in bottom of bowl and used my finger to put on baking soda and GENTLY wipe off pen.
By Erin (Guest Post)
- - 01/28/2006
Wow, just have to say thank you for the great baking soda tip. My husband was furious at himself for allowing a wet magazine to stain our lovely dining room table, but warm water and baking soda took it right off. He's so relieved.
By longrunner (Guest Post)
- - 02/19/2006
Hairspray was the only thing that worked and completely removed without effort, also left furniture in perfect condition.
By B Saxon (Guest Post)
- - 03/28/2006
My three year old son wrote on our brand new cherry kitchen table with a ballpoint pen. Hairspray didn't work, but the baking soda took it right off! I was completely amazed and very happy.
Thanks for the great tip!
By Dianna (Guest Post)
- - 04/12/2006
THANK YOU SO MUCH for the tip about baking soda! My son drew on our monitor and computer desk with a black sharpie and the baking soda took it all off.
By Stacey (Guest Post)

Archive: Removing Ballpoint Pen Ink from Table

How do I safely remove ball point pen ink from a oak table? My daughter scribbled on our oak end table.

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