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Removing Dried Paint from a Leather Sofa

Category Leather
Accidents happen; painting a room can sometimes result in spatters and drips on unprotected furniture. This is a guide about removing dried paint from a leather sofa.


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By 5 found this helpful
October 9, 2014

I've just removed eggshell white paint from my leather sofa by rubbing in petroleum jelly (Vaseline). I left it for a few minutes, then gently rubbed with a wet nail brush and it started coming off! Happy me!

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June 12, 20133 found this helpful

I sprayed leather conditioner on the paint spots and let them soak a bit. Then I took a baby's tooth brush in a circular motion to the spots. They came right up. I finished by conditioning the remainder of the chair. Like new!

By R.B. from Chicago

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March 3, 20080 found this helpful

To remove old dried up paint from my leather sofa, my husband suggested I try his Acrylic Remover and Brush Cleaner, for cleaning paintbrushes. I dabbed it on the old stains, and voila! The stains are gone and leather in perfect condition. (The olive oil didn't work very well for me.)


By Katie from Orlando, FL

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
April 1, 2010

How do I remove paint over spray off a brown leather couch?

By Brenda from Phoenix, AZ


March 18, 20140 found this helpful
Best Answer

I inherited a beautiful leather couch that my grandkids jumped on until the hardwood frame imploded. That's a repair story for another place.

Once repaired I had to deal with a combination of severe paint to wall transfers that occurred both over the years of being backed against the wall and the fact that it had to be rammed through several painted doorways due to its size. (It was built into the house when the main plate glass window was upgraded. It was moved by five twenty something's all with different ideas centered around force.


So..shattered and scuffed and deeply stained, I vowed to fix it for my library. Months passed...then a year. Deep old scuffs, stains and grandchild mucky stickiness throughout. I tried soap and water, olive oil (virgin and otherwise), acetone, naphtha (recommended by the furniture manufacture) and even Gunslick Pro Ultra-Klenz advanced gun cleaner (in desperation) which finally had some small value. But nothing made a dent in the deep large deposits of scuffed on paint or ancient foodstuffs still unidentified.

Finally, as a sometimes painter I turned to denatured alcohol. The no-no of leather works everywhere due to it's drying property. It removed the paint, food (with more work) and discolorations. WARNING! It also emulsified the entire surface of the leather finish down to the dyed through leather! So if you're not ready to re-dye and finish your couch. Call a professional!


As a cabinet maker and leather worker I am quite confident in Tandy Leather Corp. oil based leather dye, Dr. Jackson's Leather Rejuvenator and a few abrasion repairs that should only be done by a leather repair pro. In the end I have a $1800.00 leather couch in new condition for elbow grease, two weeks of labor and $360.00 inside and out materials! (The hound refused to move off for the picture...)

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By 0 found this helpful
January 10, 2011

How do I take oil base paint off a leather sofa?

By Steve Schafer from Findlay, OH



January 11, 20110 found this helpful

I used hand sanitizer on my sofa to remove the paint spatter. I dabbed it on the paint and let it soak in a little. I then used the side if a spoon to scrape it off. After all the paint was gone I rubbed the areas with a little petroleum jelly. It worked great for me.

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June 29, 20170 found this helpful

Thx worked a treat,saved me from getting beating up off the wife

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By 0 found this helpful
December 21, 2011

My grandkids spilled yellow fabric paint on a black leather sofa. Some I was able to get off right away before it dried, but the dried stuff is not giving it up easily. Any suggestions on how to gently remove this paint without damaging the leather? Thanks in advance!


By Celia


December 22, 20110 found this helpful

I believe fabric paint is acrylic and I do not know of any way to get acrylic paint off of anything. See if there is a number on the paint bottle that you can phone. Perhaps they have some secrets that the rest of us do not know.

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December 30, 20140 found this helpful

I have a leather ottoman that my son laid a painted piece of furniture on. It was stored for several years that way, and the paint transferred to the ottoman. Does anyone know if the paint can be removed without damaging the leather?

By I. Brown

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January 10, 20110 found this helpful

How do you remove paint from a leather sofa?

By jackie dunbar


Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa

Try cooking oil (any brand and kind, vegetable, canola, peanut, olive, etc. Good luck! (10/07/2010)

By Barbara

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October 4, 20100 found this helpful

How do I remove paint from a leather sofa?

By michelle blair

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August 26, 20100 found this helpful

How do you remove paint from a leather chair?

By bob from Chicago, IL


Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa

Take a Q-tip and dip it in nail polish remover. Shake off the excess polish remover and slowly rub the Q-tip over the paint drops that are on your leather. Have a clean damp cloth handy at the same time and after swabbing the Q-tip/nail polish remover, wipe the area off. Do "not" soak the area with nail polish remover, but instead work slowly and carefully. I did this on the leather interior of my car and it worked just fine. (07/17/2009)

By Carol L Craig

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April 1, 20100 found this helpful

I accidentally got a small amount of paint on my gray leather couch. It is a very fine spray and the paint was acrylic latex.

George from Toronto, Canada


Removing Paint on Leather Sofa

This may be a long shot but worth a try. Get a blow dryer (not a heat gun) and put it on its highest setting. Heat up the paint over a long period of time by trying to get it to become elastic, as it is acrylic and is a type of plastic paint. See if you can very slowly and carefully peel it from your leather sofa without anything but trying to lift it up with your fingernails.

If that doesn't work, possibly a gentle organic chemical type paint remover dabbed on very carefully and sparingly by working it in to the paint and gingerly try to dab up with a soft absorbent paper towel. You could ask an upholstery cleaner for their professional opinion, they might have just the right procedure. Hope this helped. :) (01/25/2009)

By anatole

Removing Paint on Leather Sofa

I also got a small amount of white paint on the leather seats of my car. I took a q-tip and dipped it in nail polish remover and tapped the excess off. Then very lightly go over the paint on the leather. It comes off almost immediately and then make sure you wipe it off with a wet sponge. It worked really well. It did not discolor the leather at all. (01/27/2009)

By Carol L Craig

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July 14, 20090 found this helpful

How to remove dried paint from a leather sofa?



Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

I have a Horse Buggy that I bought this weekend and someone had painted the whole thing light blue including the leather. I tried acetone, but it only worked on a very small part of it. What else can I use? I also tried the olive oil, didn't work. Thanks. I need help.

Debbie (07/24/2007)

By Debbie

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

My mum bought herself a leather chair complete with paint spatters. We used distilled vinegar, paint removal wipes, and oil. None would shift the paint, the only thing that worked was nail polish remover scrubbing with toothbrushes. It didn't damage the leather at all. I was impressed. (08/06/2007)

By Jes

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

I got latex paint on my father's favorite, expensive leather chair. Luckily he was away on a work trip, so I had some time to clean it off. I tried scraping it off with my finger nail. That was not a good idea. I went online to try to find anything that would maybe take it off. I tried some water and dish soap like somebody suggested and I did not scrub with the scratchy side of sponge. In minutes all of the paint was off. It was so cool. The olive oil thing works, too. (08/29/2007)

By Griffin

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

Tried the Olive oil with no luck. Soap and water did not work either. The nail polish remover removed the color. I was better off with the tiny bit of paint. Be careful with these home remedies. (09/21/2007)

By Lilly

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

If it's acceptable to get the leather wet, hot, hot water will soften up the paint to where it can easily be rubbed off. Acetone might work, but it will also strip all the natural oils out of the leather. Make sure you replace with a leather conditioner afterward. (12/30/2007)

By Mike

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

My painter husband sat in our pale green leather lounge chair, not realizing that he had paint under his arms. It has been on there for a while as leather cleaning gear did not get it off and I didn't want to damage the colour. I tried nail polish remover, it worked a treat, but did dry the leather in that area. I used bees wax to bring back the shine. (12/31/2007)

By Colleen R.

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

Goof Off works great, also. (02/17/2008)

By Brian

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

The Olive oil worked for most of my sofa, but the stuff in the dimples of the leather wouldn't rub out. I used Amway Liquid Organic Cleaner and a toothbrush and it came out easily. Thanks for the oil tip. (10/02/2008)

By Bill

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

If you haven't got oil try butter or margarine. It's a lot easier to apply and conditions the leather whilst removing paint. You may need to use a slightly abrasive dish cloth or such. (11/14/2008)

By Sam

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

OK, I swear I'm not trying to sell Amway (in fact, I've had my own issues with them), but I tried Olive oil and it seemed to remove a bit of the paint, but not all of it and it left a smudge-like hue of paint behind. I went back and used a small amount of straight 'Tough and Tender" on a damp, soft cotton towel and it came off with a small amount of light scrubbing. I then rinsed with warm, clear water.

The pre-base of the Olive oil seemed to act as a "reconditioner"; leaving the leather with the natural glow that it had initially. The couch I had was custom made and cost about $5K, so I was extremely happy to have removed the paint (don't even ask why a grown man would paint a room without covering the furniture. Ugh). (01/25/2009)

By SueBaby

Removing Dried Paint from Leather Sofa?

Just bought a car with black interior, however a good 10% of it was covered in paint from 2 years before hand, managed to apply olive oil with green gauze and removed all remnants of it within 25 minutes. Make sure you don't press too hard if using oil with green gauze, as it can remove some of the actual leather dye. More than happy with results though, interior looks mint in comparison to it yesterday. (02/24/2009)

By Andrew

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July 13, 20070 found this helpful
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