Cleaning pen writing off of walls is an age-old problem that parents have probably asked since the days of cave drawings. No matter how careful you are, somehow children find a way to write on the walls! Luckily, there are many ways to remove the ink from the walls. This post goes over how to clean a pen off of a wall so they look great again.
How do you clean pen off of walls? There are several methods you can try to get pen off of walls: Magic Eraser, hairspray, rubbing alcohol, baby wipes, toothpaste, nail polish remover, and a scouring pad.
Before you get started
After seeing the new artwork on your wall, you probably want to go at the wall as quickly as possible to get all the writing off. But keep a few things in mind before you start cleaning:
- Check the ingredients of any item you use. You don’t want the item to have ingredients that may ruin the paint or cause any further damage to the wall.
- Test the item in a small unseen area before trying it on the pen marks. This will prevent accidental damage in case the item doesn’t work for your wall.
- Use a white cloth or paper towel. Once the cloth or paper towel is dampened with water or cleaner, the colors can come off of it and onto the wall causing a worse stain.
- Prepare to spend time and be diligent at cleaning. That can make a difference to the results.
1) Magic Eraser
The Magic Eraser is truly a miracle product. It is made of melamine foam, which is a man-made product. The foam is durable and able to absorb a lot of moisture. It can be used to clean a variety of surfaces.
I’ve used the Magic Eraser all over the house and on shoes too. It’s my go-to product for scrubbing shower grim, dirt from shoes, and even dirty walls.
To use the Magic Eraser on pen marks, wet the eraser and then rub it over the marks. You may need to do this a few times for more severe cases. The ink should lift right off of the wall. Be careful though because being too aggressive with the scrubbing can sometimes remove the paint.
The Magic Eraser is a good option if you don’t want to use harsh chemicals on the walls like bleach or ammonia, but it’s not guaranteed that it will work for every wall situation in your home. If it doesn’t work, try the following methods.
2) Hairspray method
The hairspray method involves spraying a little bit of the hair spray on a towel or rag and rubbing it over the ink. The pen should wipe off. Use a clean rag and be careful as you wipe not to spread or smear the pen ink over more of the wall. Again, test this out in an inconspicuous spot before you start spraying all over your walls because you don’t want paint coming off.
3) Rubbing alcohol
Rubbing alcohol isn’t only a disinfectant. It can also remove pen marks from a wall. To do this carefully, use a small clean item like a cotton ball or cotton swab lightly soaked with rubbing alcohol to dab the ink spot.
The ink should transfer from the wall to the cotton ball or swab. Don’t use that one again because the ink will spread on the wall. You may end up using a lot of cotton balls or swabs, or even paper towels, but it’s well worth it to have the wall ink-free again.
Not everyone has rubbing alcohol around. A good alternative to this is using a hand sanitizer because they often contain a small amount of alcohol.
4) Baby wipes
Baby wipes are a great option because they have alcohol that can also help get rid of pen marks on a wall. They’re a convenient size and most parents have them at home.
Just give the wall a few gentle wipes. Check the wall before continuing because you don’t want to accidentally remove any paint from the wall.
Toothpaste is great at getting your teeth white, but did you know it can also remove pen marks from the wall? Toothpaste has baking soda and abrasiveness that works on teeth and other services. You’ll want to use a paste kind of toothpaste, not a gel one or a colored toothpaste such as green mint.
Cover the stain with toothpaste and leave it to sit for at least 10 minutes. Then wipe the toothpaste away wiping in one direction so as not to smear the stain. Be sure to clean the wall after.
6) Nail polish remover
Nail polish remover is another option that many women may have available at home. Check that the nail polish remover is 100% acetone. That works the best to remove polish from nails, and you want the best to remove ink from your walls.
As with the other methods above, pour a small amount of nail polish remover on a clean cloth, paper towel, or cotton swab. Then dab at the stain making sure not to spread the ink until the stain is gone.
7) A scouring pad
If all else fails, try using a scouring pad with ammonia to scrub the wall. Scrub gently so that you don’t remove the wall paint.
Removing pen writing from walls can be a difficult task, but with the right method, it can be done. Try one of the above methods and keep at it with care until the ink stains are gone. Then you can breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy clean walls again