Removing Permanent Marker on Wood Cabinets?

Cleaning Wood Cabinets
There are many recomenations for different products to use for remedying this mishap. Read on to decide which one sounds best to you. It is a good idea to make sure the product used will not damage the finish; do your research. This is a page about removing permanent marker on wood cabinets.


Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

February 27, 2005

My husband and I are remodeling our kitchen. While I was out he thought it would be a good idea to get a head start. He measured and measured and now we have a line on our brand new cabinets. Did I tell you this line is BRIGHT RED. If any of you know how to get permanent marker off of Wood Cabinets please let me know. MR Clean Eraser will just ruin the finish.

Thank you,


February 27, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

Hey Jennifer, Before you kill your husband, please try anti-bacterial hand gel. Trust me on this one. I clean for a living and I have removed almost every type of stain, marker, crayon, adhesives there are.


Just rub on the stain and let sit for a few minutes, then rub with a soft cloth. It really works. Then go kill your hubby.

By Shareen777 (Guest Post)
February 27, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

Hi Jennifer,

I teach school and permanent marker is always getting on something where it doesn't belong. My first course of action is fingernail polish remover. I sometimes need to screb a little more with my Corning Ware polish.

Good Luck !

By (Guest Post)
February 28, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

I am not sure if it will work on permanent marker but it worked on ink marks my son had put all over raw unfinished wood table. Hairspray! I couldn't believe it worked but it did. It took two tries to get it completely out but Graham Haley said it would work and it did! Best of luck. Next time tell your husband to use a chalk line. You get them at the hardware stores. That's how we do it in construction.


Mistakes happen. Please don't kill your husband. He was trying to do a good thing.


By Ronda (Guest Post)
February 28, 20050 found this helpful
Best Answer

Try WD-40

By Jimmie (Guest Post)
February 27, 20050 found this helpful

Hi Jennifer, Try vinegar. We had marker on the walls in our bathroom at work, and vinegar did the job. Hope it works for you.

By syd (Guest Post)
February 28, 20050 found this helpful

Check with the manufacturer of the cabinets for recommendations.

If it were a door, see if you could order a replacement ... it won't be cheap!

By kAREN (Guest Post)
February 28, 20050 found this helpful

Hi, Jennifer. Try cooking oil or Pam spray. This will usually dissolve any kind of permanent marker and not hurt the finish on the cabinets. Any kind of oil will work on this.

March 21, 20050 found this helpful

To remove permanent marker from a wood surface simply write over the top of it with a dry erase marker and wipe away.

By Belinda

By Renae (Guest Post)
May 18, 20050 found this helpful

Jean - YOU ARE RIGHT!!! Anti-bacterial hand gel took perm. black marker off our expensive office desk! THANK YOU!!!

By kelly (Guest Post)
June 6, 20050 found this helpful

has anyone removed black permanent marker off of varnished guitar??? Help, I need to fix my mistake before my husband finds out!!! Thanks

By Tracey (Guest Post)
June 18, 20050 found this helpful

The anti-bacterial hand gel worked FANTASTIC!!!!
My 4 year-old son wrote with black permanent marker all over our wood cherry kitchen cabinets. We had a ton of black marker everywhere and it removed all of it... thanks for the tip, hopefully it will help someone else....

By (Guest Post)
July 14, 20050 found this helpful

Thank you everyone so much for your ideas, I got the marker stains out with your suggestions!!!

By Dawn (Guest Post)
September 13, 20050 found this helpful

Thanks guys! I used anti-bacterial hand gel to get sharpie marks out of my bathroom cabinet. You saved my life.

By sue (Guest Post)
December 12, 20050 found this helpful

I want a permanent marker that stays on while i create designs on leather? What can I use?

By jell-o (Guest Post)
April 5, 20060 found this helpful

will hairspray and vinegar damage un-varnished raw wood??? please tell me asap i am in danger of ruining a birthday with my silly antics

By Mercedes Gelnar 11 years (Guest Post)
April 15, 20060 found this helpful

My little brother scribbled permanent marker all over our cabinets we used alcohol and finger nail polish remover hope it works

By Anthony. (Guest Post)
October 7, 20060 found this helpful

Hey i just got all this permanent marker off my closet door with cologne.

By Rob K. (Guest Post)
November 19, 20060 found this helpful

The anti-bacterial gel worked like a charm on our new cherry cabinets! Just an FYI the kind with aloe and vitamin E works just as well!

By Maggie (Guest Post)
September 16, 20070 found this helpful

After reading everyone's postings. I tried the vinegar first, on our three year old art project (with black permanent marker) on our white kitchen cabinets! The vinegar didn't work at all.


I then tried the finger nail polish. It worked like a charm AND it didn't eat the finish! Thanks to everyone for their posts!

By Jessica (Guest Post)
November 14, 20070 found this helpful

I used the anti bacterial gel on my table (where kids had colored with markers that bled through and were NOT washable). It ruined the finish and did not work well. I used Goo Gone spray gel on another spot in the same area and it got 90% of it off with no noticeable damage to the finish.

By pati (Guest Post)
January 19, 20080 found this helpful

I tried all ideas listed and although it lightened the marker stain it didnt completely remove it. My marker stain was on my glossy finished kitchen table. I tried a moistened Brillo pad and l lightly scrubbed the stain and it disappeared.


Thanks for all of the ideas. I guess the top coat of the wood finish makes a difference.

By Marni (Guest Post)
September 4, 20081 found this helpful

My twin sons colored all over our cabinets and I tried everything I knew in addition to all the sugeestions and nothing worked- the stain simply lightened. Then, on a whim, I tried my ceramic stovetop cleaner (for ceramic or glasstop stoves) and it worked!! It's non-abrasive so it did not ruin the cabinets. Hopefully, this will help someone else.

By Stacey and Whitney (Guest Post)
September 28, 20080 found this helpful

We took black marker off of our end table by using a combination of bath and body works hand sanitizer gel and nail polish remover. It took it all off and didn't ruin the finish!

By Mara (Guest Post)
November 6, 20080 found this helpful

Thank you for the tips! I used a pencil eraser to remove marks from a Sharpie on my kitchen cabinets. It worked instantly and didn't remove the finish!

By Michael F. (Guest Post)
February 9, 20090 found this helpful

Many thanks. What the pink eraser didn't remove, the antibacterial hand gel did. This was permanent marker that I discovered on a low, semi-hidden area of a pantry cabinet.


The marks may have been there for weeks or maybe months.

By julie m. (Guest Post)
February 17, 20090 found this helpful

Pink eraser & awesome. My son wrote on our white wood furniture, with a blue sharpie! I first dabbed the mark with a cloth saturated in AWESOME (no water!), then the remainder I erased with a PINK ERASER. Worked like a charm=)

February 18, 20110 found this helpful

This works, Magic Eraser by Mr. Clean. Worked like a charm. One swipe and the sharpie was gone from our wood cabinets.

October 20, 20180 found this helpful


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