Paint stains can be difficult to remove, especially if they are allowed to dry. Depending on the type of paint stain, you will want to use different stain removal methods. This is a guide about removing paint stains from clothing.
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To remove oil based paint off clothing spread margarine on spot and scrub with a toothbrush. I was amazed!
Source: Parent from work
By Darlene from Keswick, Ontario
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Here are questions related to Removing Paint Stains from Clothing.
I am a therapist that works with children and have ruined clothes due to the children painting with tempera paint. The children also have ruined clothes. Is there a way to remove the dried paint from clothes?
Alice from Cleburne, TX
When my husband was getting his undergraduate degree he worked at the campus daycare. What they did was add dish soap to the liquid tempura it would come right out. I think baby laundry soap added to it would work as well.
By (Guest Post) 09/14/2006
Before I get the paint out, I put on a smock. The kids wear smocks, too. Liquid soap added to the paint does help, but isn't foolproof. I ruined a lot of good clothes in the classroom before I became consistent with wearing a smock!
How do you get pink paint out of a blue sweatshirt?
By Holly G.
Chances are you can't get the stain out. Unless it was textile paint that sets with heat. Any other kind of paint is permanent. Don't throw the sweatshirt away though, find a great applique at your local craft store and put it over the stain. If that looks off-center, add more stuff to the sweatshirt to make it look trendy. You can find all kinds of books in the library on re-making clothes. Also, there are lots of books on making sweatshirts into jackets.
Even if you don't sew, use the iron-on appliques you find and you can add lots of other embellishments by using products such as Steam-a-Seam 2 that permanently bond fabric to fabric. It also will bond appliques that aren't iron-on. One book I saw for non-sewers uses a glue gun to put on the embellishments. It even uses it to keep seams together if you don't have a sewing machine.
In most of the other questions about grease stains, nacho cheese stains, orange stain, salad dressing the answer is the same. I have successfully removed stains using a product that is made to take grease off car mechanics hands. One of the ones I have used is called Go-Jo, but there are lots of others. You find those in the car department at Wal-Mart or Target and you can find them at your local car parts store. I have even found them in the dollar store. I use this product often to get the stains around my husband's shirt collars off. You just rub it in thoroughly and then throw it in the wash with the rest of the laundry. Don't put it on and let it sit, put the article in the washer immediately. There are lots of books about cleaning that mention this product.
I have a good sweat shirt that I got paint on. What is a good remedy for removal? The shirt is white and the paint black.
By Linda L. from St. Cloud, MN
If the paint is wet, you may be able to get it off with water (latex or acrylic paint) or paint thinner (oil based). If it is dry, there is nothing that I know of that will remove either kind of paint. Paint is made to be non-removable. If it came off, we wouldn't use it on our walls or paintings.
I had my favorite white t-shirt on and I got some blue paint on my collar. I then by mistake put it with the laundry and I'm not too sure how to get it off, does anybody know how? Thanks.
Normally everyone will tell you it can not be taken out and for the most part that is the way it is, except for this one little product that has been around for over one hundred years. It is called," Sav-a-Brush" made by Red Devil Paint. It is no longer sold in stores and must be ordered directly.
It is a powder you add to water and soak your clothes in. Made for painters when throwing away drop cloths or painter's overalls were just plain not done. It costs about $2.99 Order at Red Devil Paint.com or call 1 800-423-3845 ext 3036
I got green matte emulsion paint on my best white interview blouse. I've tried bleaching it several times but it won't wash out. Any suggestions?
Soak the blouse in white vinegar for several hours. Then use the back of a "butter" knife to scratch off the paint. If there's still paint residue, repeat process. My husband got white latex paint on his favorite Camo shirt and let it dry before he told me about it. I couldn't believe it when this method got it out. Good luck!
I just would like to know how I can get white paint off of a black work shirt and pants. I have been told that I can use laundry soap, but I would really like to know. I hope that you can help me.
By ladyhawk13 from Guelph, Ontario
Hi, I do not know how wide and thick the paint stain is. I usually get mine off with cut-zit or any paste paint remover for furniture and wood. I use a very small round scrubber paint brush. I paint it on and wait about 10-15 minutes and go and use a plastic spoon or stainless and scrape it off. I do this a number of times.
Only thing black can look very worn looking when you do this over and over. However if the paint stain is real heavy (I mean thick) and wide it may not be worth it, but when I have small paint stains I test the fabric and do this. I have never bleached the fabric with it. Even black jeans can look worn in a spot you rub and rub to get out oily spots. Hope this helps.
I wore my favorite jeans when helping my girlfriend paint her front room bright yellow. I got paint all down my pant legs. How do I get it out? Please help.
I don't think you can get this out, sorry. I have never been able to get paint spots out of clothes. You might have been able to wash this out if you had tried immediately when the paint was wet, but after it has dried, I know of nothing that will remove paint.
I got white masonry paint on my partner's black t-shirt. Could somebody please advice me on how to remove it? Advice much appreciated.
By Claire from Scotland
Is it a latex paint? If it is, you might stand a chance by going to a home improvement store and asking for a product that removes paint when you have painted walls at home and got some on the woodwork. It might work the same on clothing. I cannot remember the exact name of it right now but if you tell them what I just said, they will probably know. If it is an oil paint, I think there probably would not be much luck in getting it out.
I got white latex paint on my favorite blue crop pants. I tried scrubbing with several stain removal products. It still is in the fabric. Is there any hope left? The pants are still wet from scrubbing if that helps any.
By urban farm girl
I got dried paint and a mud splatter on my spandex bike pants and don't know how to get it out.
By Grace R.
I was helping my friend paint his room, then I got paint all over my Under Armor Jacket. Does anyone have a solution to get the paint stain off?
I got some tempera paint on my Rodgers jersey in art, how can I get it out? Any suggestions?
How do I get dry latex paint off a cotton jacket?
Ordinarily, I would have said you can't. However, I have seen a product advertised called Motsenbocker's Lift Off for artist's acrylic paint, which should work as well on latex -- very similar stuff. I haven't tried it. Here is the website
How to get oil paint out of white sweater?
I would try dish detergent, but I doubt there is much hope. I'm going to say you're not going to get it out, so you will have to cover it up somehow. Appliques, patches, or embroidery may be the way to go, but can get seriously expensive quickly. You probably are further ahead to wear it for painting or schlubbing arround the house and purchasing a new one for wear in public. You can find some great things at thrift stores for next to nothing!
We were painting our walls when we were moving and my daughter got white paint all over her new jeans. Is there anything I can do to save her jeans? I thought about dyeing them. Please help.
By Trina from Richmond, VA
I had a black pair of skinny jeans that had about 4 spots of white (very) on it. A couple of spots were from the entire paint brush as well. All I did was spray shout triple acting onto all the spots, rub it in, wash it in cold water. Took it out of the wash, and the paint was gone. The paint had been dried on there for about 8 or 9 hours before it caught my eye. Maybe i got lucky? I don't kno, haha, but it worked for me! :)
My daughter got black paint on her lilac winter jacket and it's a real mess. I tried the rubbing alcohol, the hand sanitizer and the Goo Off. Nothing is working. Please help. She also got some on her jeans and I have tried all of the above without any luck too.
Marion from Chicago, IL
If your daughters jacket is made from a synthetic material then acetone, nail polish remover, and many other chemicals will start melting the fabric. Any oil based product such as WD-40, will leave an oil stain in the material leaving you with two things to try and remove.
When Latex or oil based paints dry on material, there is only one product that will truly remove it. Using anything else is a waste of money, time, and effort.
This product was first made for painters about one hundred years ago, to remove dried paint from their painting overalls and brushes. Back then, throwing them out and buying new ones was unheard of.
Unfortunately, this product is no longer sold in stores and needs to be bought directly from the manufacturer.
The product is called, "Save a Brush" made by Red Devil,Inc.. Phone # 1-800-423-3845 Ext. 3036 cost $ 2.50 a bag
How do I get an indoor, white paint stain (now covered by black permanent marker) out of my daughter's black polyester, crinoline and nylon dress?
By Stephanie from St. Louis, MO
I used the hand wash that you don't need water for (the smell of it is enough to strip paint). Put a little bit on and rubbed in with a hard toothbrush. Just kept reapplying and brushing till it was all gone then washed as normal and all is well. Good luck.
How do I remove off white paint from black pants?
I brushed the back of my Eddie Brauer down feather long coat on flat finished white paint 7 months ago. It's made of 52% nylon, 32% polyester, 15% cotton. I used shout triple action, it's a stain remover. I did a section at a time and it worked. Don't saturate or put too little just enough to cover the stain. Wait a few seconds then use a dry paper towel with pressure and wipe back and forth. I noticed it somehow turned the paint into a chalky substance that it was easy to scrape off when somewhat dry using my finger nail. In some areas you will have to repeat the process especially heavy stain area. Note: the bottle will state "Dry paint may be impossible for any stain treater to remove." I tried it anyway based on recommendation from another user on this website.
I just received a beautiful black hip length jacket made of Polyurethane. I tried it on and it looks killer on me if I do say so myself! That's when I noticed on the left shoulder a thin vertical line of silver metallic paint about 1/4" to 1/2" in width and about 1 1/2" long. Also there's another 2" long, 1/4" wide streak directly down from the shoulder!
Do any of you have any ideas on how I might be able to clean this and remove the metallic paint? The outer shell of the jacket is made of 100% polyurethane and the INSTRUCTIONS FOR CLEANING on the inside tag read: CLEAN WITH DAMP SPONGE, WIPE DRY, DO NOT DRY CLEAN, DO NOT IRON.
This has got me severely stumped! Any suggestions? I'd be forever grateful. Thank you so very much.
You could try a tiny bit of acetone nail polish remover on a q tip. BEFORE you try it on the paint, try it on an inner hem to be sure it doesn't alter the fabric itself. If it remains unchanged, do a tiny amount at a time, only adding more remover as needed to do the job. Change q tips frequently. After you are done clean the areas with mild soap on a damp sponge to remove any residue. Not much to lose at this point, unless you would wear it with the paint on it if you cannot get it out.
I have got some dried emulsion paint on a lovely new duvet cover (cotton). How can I get it off? What is Goof Off?
Janine from Great Britain
By patsand31 (Guest Post) 08/29/2008
I have used mentholated spirits and it works, test small area for colour fastness. Use in a well ventilated room. Dab on, work in then wash in usual way. Hope it works for you.
I got this pair of blue jogger pants and I wore it during a rave party. I didn't know that what there was a "paint war" so everybody was drenched with paint. They say it is only waterbased paint. I didn't wash it for few days and when I did, the paint wasn't removed. What should I do? Thanks.
By Jack DLP 
My boyfriend went to a paint party in Magaluf and has wrecked his trainers. The bright UV paint won't come off the white fabric areas. I've tried carefully bleaching the white parts, but I'm not seeing much result. Should I try white spirit? or does anyone have any better suggestions?
How do I remove dried paint from clothes?
Oh lord, please do not use Goof Off- Goo Gone on your clothes. That is a oil based product similar to WD-40 and yes,it might take paint out but you will then be left with a big oil/grease stain to try and remove. Go on-line to Red Devil Paint.com and get a small bag of "Save a Brush". This is the only thing I have ever used that actually will take dried paint out of material. It was first sold to professional painters to remove any paint from their very expensive paint brushes and painters over-alls. Back then people did not throw away their tools/clothes.
They had one pair and had to take care of them. That was something my great grandfather and grandfather used and is still made today. Very inexpensive also. Get it at ,"Red Devil Paint Company.com" Do not use an oil based product they do not work.
How do I get paint off of Under Amour clothing?
Charcelia from The Woodlands, TX
There is a link with your post. Most are using hand sanitizer and or rubbing alcohol with success and some are using nail polish remover. I have used Goop hand cleaner on fresh paint and saved the clothes but I'm not sure it would help an older paint stain. Hope you can save the jersey
How do I get acrylic paint off of a ski jacket?
Laurie from Ironwood, Michigan
Can you get wet paint out of a swimsuit? I have pool-side paint on a spandex suit.
Stephanie from Seattle, WA
The tag says 86% polyester and 14% Spandex. My little brother, being the impatient kid he is, decided he didn't want to wait a day for me to get off work to help him with his Spiderman costume my mom just spent 80 dollars on. Somehow he managed to get white paint spots on it, following up with red paint trying to cover it up. So I'm trying to save him from getting his Halloween for the next hundred years from being taken from him by trying to get it out. Help!
By Koda M. 
How do I remove house paint from dark black pants?
How do you remove paint from light colored denim after it has been in the washer and dryer?
How do I get white paint stains out of black dress pants.
By Shawna from Indianapolis, IN
Prom night prank! Bright orange/green luminous paint apparently from "glow sticks?" spilled on the shoulder of a brand new suit jacket from Reiss in navy, 100% cotton. Any ideas how to remove? It is well and truly dried on.
I got spray paint on my hoody. How do I get it off?
I got a small white spot of paint on my basketball shorts and black t-shirt and I forgot about it. It was sitting in my room for a couple of days and the paint has dried. Is there anyway I can get the paint off?
By Alliyah X
I've tried rubbing alcohol and several types of stain removers, and thus far, nothing much worked. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for all the help.
How do you get black paint out of 100 percent polyester sweatpants?
I picked up a white, oil based, paint stain on my navy blue rain proof polyester Gore-Tex jacket. It has been on the jacket for a couple of days, so it is nicely dried to material.
By Neil from Croydon, UK
We had a party today and we had to take white shirts to spray paint. Now little did I know that the paint would seep through onto my new Lycra swimming costume. How can I wash this out? Please help!
By Anna R
I got a small line of white paint on my black baseball (varsity) jacket. It's not a thick line and I already scrubbed at it and put it through the wash, but the stain is still there. Is there anyway to get rid of it? To make it worse the black also faded were I was scrubbing at the jacket, is there anyway to get rid of this? Thanks.
By Jordan T.
I had to paint my room last month. I was wearing my only and favorite tutu because I just got back from my little sister's bday party. (I may be a teen, but I love tutus.) I didn't think I would get paint on it, but I did. I have white paint on a black tutu. It is dry now and I need to get it out fast! Tomorrow is my picture day and I really want to wear the tutu. How can I get the paint out?
I got white paint on my dark grey sweat pants. How do I get the paint out?
How do I get dried up black acrylic paint off of polyester gym shorts?
By Scott P.
How do you get glow in the dark/black light responsive paint off of a cotton white and grey maxi dress?
How do you get powder paint off of white Nike Air Forces (shoes)?
I was painting at school and forgot to take off my sweater and got paint all over it. My mom also washed it. Any tips on getting it out?
By Brooklyn J
I was at a party and someone threw a bottle of paint which hit me and stained my hat and clothes. I believe it is some sort of body paint because it is neon green. It' embedded in the hat pretty badly. I'm not sure there's much hope.
By Dan R. from New York, NY
I was painting with my sister and I got red paint on my black sweater. Do you guys have a way for me to get it off?
I have a fav pair of brown moleskin pants. I had my apt painted this week and accidentally hit the wet wall. Any hope?
How do you get primer out of clothes?
How do I remove Behr paint from my son's cotton school uniform?
How can you get paint off of a shirt without removing the color?
How do you get brown paint out of a child's blouse?
By M. Limauge
How do I remove papier mache paint from clothes?
I got red paint on my fab white top. I have tried everything I can think of. I put it to be washed, but it wasn't washed. It has been 4 four days. How do I get it out? Please help!
By Shannon H
How do I get brown fence paint out my Lacoste shorts?
How can I remove Kilz paint primer from my cotton Dickie pants?
I have dried paint on a down-filled white jacket. How can I remove it?
By Gail from Weymouth, MA
How do you remove gloss paint from denim?
By Karen from England
How do I remove enamel paint splashes from a corduroy shirt?
Keri from Johannesburg, South Africa
Thrifty Fun has been around so long that many of our pages have been reset several times. Archives are older versions of the page and the comments that were provided then.
Is it possible to remove old water based paint from mainly cotton clothing without causing too much damage?
Frank from Australia
I just removed a couple of very old white paint stains from a pair of blue jeans. I had tried rubbing alcohol and nail polish remover, and neither worked, so I randomly decided to try a product that I had around, called "Scrapper's Solution" by Un-du. It's designed for fixing scrapbooking mistakes (if you've glued something in the wrong place). I scrubbed the stains with a toothbrush, adding another drop of the solution every few seconds. I scrubbed for about 5 minutes, and the paint stains are gone! (09/09/2006)
Definitely USE ALCOHOL! I'm so glad I didn't listen to the nay-sayers who said old dried paint simply won't come out. After reading these postings, moments ago I applied rubbing alcohol to old (I'm talking years) paint stain on the sleeve of a favorite sweater. This was an open knit sweater so it took extensive rubbing to work out all the 3-D paint, but it worked! Admittedly, all the rubbing did fray the sleeve a tad, but this is waaaay better than a ghost of light paint all along a dark blue sleeve. Thanks! (10/19/2006)
Checked your website immediately and tackled my sweatshirt with alcohol as suggested. It took quite a bit of scrubbing with a cloth and a toothbrush but the paint is gone. My sweatshirt is red, the paint was white. There is no fading at the stain sight or damage to the fibers. THANK YOU! (12/04/2006)
We have been painting one of our children's homes and got paint on my favorite shirt. My first thought was ThriftyFun. Bless everyone who posted how to remove the paint, I now am able to wear my shirt again. (12/06/2006)
On my daughter's black polyester workout pants horribly marred with dried yellow paint. All I can say is that rubbing alcohol and scrubbing like a banshee with a nylon Dobie potscrubber worked PURE MAGIC! (12/29/2006)
How do I get paint off of jeans? How do I remove gloss paint from clothing (i.e. jeans)?
With any stain, you want to treat it as quickly as possible. If paint is allowed to dry on your clothing it will be more difficult to remove all traces of the stain.
The lady I work for does oil paintings. The other day she dropped and I caught it getting paint on my uniform.
How do I get dried "water-soluble" wall paint spatters off my knit shirt? I washed it and the paint is still there. Thanks.
By cindyluhu from Melbourne, FL
I have had great success using Murphy's Oil Soap. Wet the paint spot with water, apply Murphy's, let it sit a few minutes. I used a soft toothbrush to lightly scrub. I use this product to clean my decorative painting brushes. If this doesn't work, try 91% alcohol. Let it soak as well. It will dissolve the water-based paint. I've also heard of using oven cleaner on oil-based paints. Before you try any spot cleaning, check for color-fastness on the inside hem if possible. Would hate to ruin your clothes. Good Luck. (06/18/2009)
Mommy was a hero. Mineral spirits worked wonderfully to remove oil-based wood stain from a 100% polyester futbol jersey (Barcelona). It also had water-based paint on it. I chose to use the mineral spirits first to treat the wood stain by simply pouring a little on each spot and let it sit or apply more until it faded.
I then washed in cold with regular laundry detergent. I then went to work on the paint by scrubbing with an abrasive soap bar I have (called Hog Wash) that is for scrubbing stains. Using that and warm-hot water, the paint came out too. One more wash as normal and you can't tell it was ever stained. Both were fresh stains although the paint had dried, but it was only about 2 hours old. (07/05/2009)
How do I get dried paint and plaster out of black cotton?
I bumped into a door with wet paint and got paint on my jean dress. How can I get it off my dress?
By Rosrich from Baton Rouge, LA
The rubbing alcohol did the job. Thank God for the ability to read and access to the internet. Was packing for vacation when I realized my favorite pair of black shorts had white paint on them, ugh. Read about using rubbing alcohol and gave it a try. Happened to have an old spin toothbrush handy which made it even easier. Boy am I a happy camper now. Ready for V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N!