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Removing Permanent Marker from Hair

Category Miscellaneous
If your or your child accidentally or intentionally got permanent marker in your hair it can be a chore to remove. This is a page about removing permanent marker from hair.


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.

December 19, 20060 found this helpful

My daughter created highlights in her hair with a red permanent marker, how can I remove it?

Cuscus from Winchester ON


By (Guest Post)
December 20, 20062 found this helpful

i hate to say this but did it look nice? because i might try it in my brown hair unless people can tell me its terrible lol i do dye my hair to hide the grey but highlights are so expensive this sounds great


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By Karen (Guest Post)
December 20, 20060 found this helpful

Try goo gone but hair is more porous than the plastic I used this on, good luck!

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June 10, 20070 found this helpful

I had a friend with this problem...she had to get her child's hair cut really short all over and it took most of it out....the only thing that worked somewhat was baking soda...the only thing safe to use really.

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By Lisa (Guest Post)
July 18, 20071 found this helpful

My son purposely marked his hair for spirit at a swim meet. I was trying to figure out how to get it out, but the problem took care of itselt.


The next time he went swimming it was gone. I don't know if it was the chlorine or the sun or a combination, but it was gone :)

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By cassandra skaggs (Guest Post)
February 22, 20080 found this helpful

I've tried everything but it still won't come out

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June 1, 20080 found this helpful

I personally have very dark hair so I've never been faced with this problem. However, I have a few suggestions which should at least diminish the intensity of the marker-colored hair, if not completely remove it.
(1) Vinegar is a great, cheap way to remove product build-up that accumulates in your hair over time from the use of heavy conditioners, hair sprays, gels/mousses, and residual waxes (a common ingredient in most shampoos and conditioners). Try apple cider vinegar full-strength. Heat it up in microwave first and then apply it w/ a squirt bottle to dry (product-free) hair. Use a fine-toothed comb to work vinegar into hair strands as much as possible. Then, wrap hair in shower cap (or plastic bag) and wait 30 mins. Wash w/ a 'Clarifying' shampoo (2x) afterward to thoroughly cleanse hair and eliminate vinegar odor.


(2) There's a product called, 'Malibu', that professional salons use to strip hair prior to tinting it- removing both product build-up and older, faded tints. You can buy 'Malibu' at Sally's Beauty Supply for under $5. It's a powder which only requires the addition of water to activate it. Instructions on back of package.
(3) You may want to try using a peroxide developer to strip marker color out. Developers come in 20, 30, and 40 volume & are generally used in conjunction w/ hair color or bleach to lift natural hair color (& deposit new color if tinting). Because these developers are harsh chemicals, start out w/lowest volume developer available to avoid unnecessary damage to hair. Ask employees at beauty supply for advice on and assistance with properly applying this product!

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By angie (Guest Post)
June 3, 20080 found this helpful

I just tried putting coon tails in my hair with a black sharpie, and I slipped. I just washed it out really good with lots of soap and I blow dried the piece of hair of which the marker was on, and most of it came out.


One more wash and it should come out, for sure, but after you was it make sure to dry the piece of hair or the whole head.

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December 6, 20081 found this helpful

Oh, my god, your daughter is brilliant! Such a great idea! (I am serious)

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January 22, 20091 found this helpful

Your child sounds most creative! To help, you can use a *stripping shampoo* (Neutrogena makes one) for when you have a build-up of residue from chlorine, hairspray, mud or old shampoo and conditioners that leave a film on your hair etc. When using this type of clean shampoo, it'll cleanse deep and brings back that natural luster and shine. I am sure this would be helpful with your *marker* issue. Good luck! :)

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By Paris (Guest Post)
February 1, 20090 found this helpful

I put pink, purple, blue and black sharpie in my already highlighted/colored blonde hair for colored highlights. (I know I'm an idiot).


So far, I used dish soap, shampoo, vinegar, "oops" hair color remover, fingernail polish remover without acetone, and alcohol. NOTHING will get it out! Any more ideas people ? Please HELP

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By Madi (Guest Post)
March 1, 20090 found this helpful

strip remover=yes
nair polish remover=yes

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December 24, 20090 found this helpful

I colored part of my bangs purple and it looked super cool, but like a month later its all faded out pink and it looks bad and wont go away!

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By 0 found this helpful
November 13, 2015

I have a problem. I was bored and got blue Sharpie in my hair and I can't get it out. My mom will freak out when she sees my blue hair and if I don't get it out by tonight or in the morning I will be going to school with blue hair and I will be known as Sharpie girl.


Any advice or tips on how to get this out?

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November 14, 20060 found this helpful

I have Sharpie in my hair. How do I get it out?

Alisha from Elma, WA


By Danielle (Guest Post)
November 15, 20060 found this helpful

I think it will probably come out in a few washes if not just one. I can't imagine you have enough sharpie in your hair to be too noticeable, so I wouldn't worry about it. I've gotten sharpie in my hair before and it comes out rather easily with shampoo, but it may depend on your hair color, too.

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November 16, 20060 found this helpful

maybe nail polish remover. test on an inconspicuous place on hair first. then wash it i would think it would come out.

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By Haley aka Sharpie head (Guest Post)
December 10, 20060 found this helpful

I currently have sharpie in my hair.
Its red and I thought it looked cool and I noticed after one wash it was fading already so I applied more. Well its been about 1 month and it still hasnt come out.
I don't know how to get it out but I talked to my father and he said that Sharpie has acetone in it and acetone is a thinner so he said eventually my hair will fall out.
So if I were you I'd stop wither the sharpie once you get it out.

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 20, 20070 found this helpful

Does sharpie make your hair fall out?

Editor's Note: I don't know why it would but I suppose it is possible.

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By Piper (Guest Post)
February 16, 20080 found this helpful

I put sharpie in my hair[my hair is brown] and after a couple of washes with shampoo it will come out. It just seems to get all over your towel.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 10, 2015

How do you get purple Sharpie out of your hair? I have tried alcohol already.

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August 22, 20140 found this helpful

I put Crayola permanent marker in my hair. How do I get it out?

By Julissa


August 27, 20140 found this helpful

You might have to let it grow out or color all your hair with the appropriate type of color.

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July 19, 20110 found this helpful

My friend said she wanted to color my black hair with a silver Sharpie. It's been in a day; I think I got one side of it out, but there is still some in. How do I remove it?

By Mercedes M.


July 22, 20110 found this helpful

Keep shampooing daily and it will eventually be gone. ;-)

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By 0 found this helpful
August 1, 2012

Can you get red Sharpie out of brown hair? It's been in for a while now, but I want it to come out now! What should I do?

By Jessika


August 2, 20120 found this helpful

Try saturating the colored hair with rubbing alcohol. You might have to apply more than once - it dries very quickly.
If the color comes out, you need to wash your hair afterwards.

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December 19, 20060 found this helpful

Can someone suggest anything for removing permanent purple ink from bleach blond hair? A friend of mine who has waste length hair, picked up a marker to hold her hair up in a bun... Unbeknownced to her the cap came off and leaked a nice big extremely conspicuous blotch of ink in the middle of her hair. She tried washing it out with shampoo but it didnt have any impact on the stain.

Stephanie from Tustin, CA


Permanent Ink In Har

Lemon juice might help. Section off that strip. and then use old cloth with hair sandwiched in between and blot like. Call a local beautician also. (10/08/2005)

By Vicky

Permanent Ink In Hair

The only thing I know that will definitely take it out is nail polish remover. But, I don't know if this will damage her hair. (10/10/2005)

By Jackolyn Smith

Permanent Ink In Hair

Try isopropyl alchohol 99%. I removed sharpie black permanent marker from white leather shoes with this. Good Luck. (10/30/2005)

By Lisa

Permanent Ink In Hair

Nail polish remover will work, but must be the kind WITH acetone. Good luck! (04/27/2006)

By Kerri

Permanent Ink In Hair

The same thing happened to me I used nail polish remover and immediately washed it out with cold water this seemed to get it out almost immediately. (11/06/2006)

By jessica

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