Remove Pen Stains from clothes….. this might be a situation that you might face when your favourite pen in your pocket leaked, or you just wiped the sleeve of the favourite shirt across a wet page of ink. Now you have a stain on your jeans or a shirt!
If you just wash the cloth in the machine as usual, the stain is very much likely to become permanent, but with common household chemicals and little bit of patience, you can completely get out of the stained situation.
This step wise guide will tell you how to identify and get the stain out of the fabric, and will definitely prove a life saver with easy methods of removing various types of ink.
Methods to Remove Pen Stains
- Assessing the Stain to Remove Pen Stains
- Removing Oil-Based Ink Pen Stains
- Removing Water-based Ink Pen Stains
- Removing Highly-pigmented Ink Pen Stains
Assessing the Stain to Remove Pen Stains
Determine the ink you are dealing with. Not every pen that has a ball in its header is actual “ballpoint” pens, and various pens use various kinds of ink that must be removed in different ways. Traditionally ballpoint pens have a fast paced drying and oil-based ink which needs a solvent to de-stain. Rollerball pens like those which have common manufacturers Uni-Ball and Pilot, have water-based inks which are more easy to de-stain, on the other hand gel pens have an extra-pigmented type of ink which can be a bit tougher to remove.
If you have a pen whose specifications are not known to you, go to the website of office supply store and navigate through it for the name/model of the pen. The product description will description unfold to you whether it is a roller ball, ballpoint, or gel pen. You may also go through the manufacturer’s website for other information, and ink-removal instructions.
Dealing with mystery stain. If the case is somewhat more full of mysteries that the pen is unknown but you just got the stain on the cloth in your office or any outdoor meet and don’t know the exact kind, first go with as are trying to remove a ballpoint ink. If that doesn’t work, slowly move on to the roller ball ink, and finally, to gel ink. Don’t forget to rinse the garment thoroughly between each stain removal try, but do not use dryer until the stain is dealt with!
Reading fabric label. If cloth is machine-washable, as they generally are, you should be try to remove stain at home. If the fabric is dry-clean or hand-wash only, it is better take it to a dry-cleaner shop for assistance. The cost to dry clean is usually under $5, and this will save time and hassle, too.
Ensure to describe the stain beforehand to the dry cleaner and put the pen, which caused it, in a dustbin to prevent further staining.
Removing Oil-Based Ink Pen Stains
Finding best solvent in the house. The most garment-friendly method to remove any oil-based ink stain is using Ethanol or Ethyl alcohol. It is a common ingredient in household products. Rubbing alcohol, hairspray, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer all of them, have it. Prepackaged hand-wipes and baby wipes are also great.
Placing garment on absorbent surface. You can place a white bleachable dry towel, or a well layered paper napkins. This will make a super absorbent place and provide the ink a place to go. Ensure only one layer of stained fabric is placed on the paper napkin, otherwise it will spread the stain to another part of the fabric.
Apply alcohol-based solvent. Soak a cotton ball while using rubbing alcohol, and dab it whole heartedly over the stain. Squirt a little sanitizer out if you are using hand sanitizer, and rub it gently to seep into the stain using your fingers. Spray in case of a hairspray, on the fabric until it gets saturated. While using a wipe, heavily blot the cloth. Try to squeeze the solvent present in the wipe to get into the stain. Gently place and leave the wipe on the cloth, and put a heavy something, like glass bowl, over it for good several minutes.
Waiting for few minutes. The solvent requires a few minutes to get down and break the oil links of the ink with the cloth. It will depend on the strength and duration of the stain, it has been there for. Alcohol-based wipes and solvents dry out quickly, so keep dabbing or spraying in between as required to keep the stained-area wet for a long enough time for the ink to disappear.
Blotting of stain. Use a clean, dry garment to blot the stain. You may try to push and press the ink to get sucked out of your cloth, into the blotting fabric and to the absorbent surface made underneath the stained garment. Most of the ink comes out readily with this technique.
Repeating the procedure if required. If you see the removal of most of the ink on the stained garment through the use of alcohol based solvent, you are going great! You may put the stained garment to a cleaner part of the paper napkin it still some ink remains. Put a little bit more solvent, wait, and blot it again, if need be.
Wash the stained area using detergent. If whole of the stain is removed with only a faint lining of the ink remaining, apply a normal laundry soap to the affected area. Soak in for a few minutes and rub the fabric rigorously together and agitate it. Rinse it thoroughly with warm water to remove any stains. You can wash the cloth as usual if the stain is completely gone. If the stain is not gone, repeat with following methods.
Removing Water-based Ink Pen Stains
Soaking in milk. Skim milk is the best for this. No need to soak, just put milk only on the stained portion. Wait at least half an hour to scrub the stain gently with the help of a toothbrush or any similar soft-bristled brush. Rinse thoroughly with warm water to see the effect.
Treat leftover stain with color-safe bleach. Mix bleaching powder with a little amount of water and make a thin paste. Rub paste just over the stained area. Keep it undisturbed for 1/2 to 1 hour. Do a gentle scrubbing of the stain with a soft-bristled brush and again rinse thoroughly with warm water. By now the stain should be entirely be gone. Repeat the previous two steps, if needed.
Wash using regular detergent. After inspecting thoroughly, place it in the dryer. Continue treating it like this until the stain is not 100% gone.
Removing Highly-pigmented Ink Pen Stains
Hand-wash using soap or regular detergent urgently. Due to the highly-pigmented nature of the ink, the manufacturer always confess that removal of stains of gel ink can be difficult, basically next to impossible. The best bet in this case is to act quickly. Getting the stain out as quickly as possible with an all-purpose cleaner is must. Add a fair amount of normal detergent, stain removal gel, and liquid hand soap directly to the stain, and rinse it thoroughly under the running water. Try to blot out remaining ink by pushing and pressing the part of fabric between two absorbent layers of cloth or stacks of paper napkins.
Use ammonia. Dissolve 1 teaspoon of household ammonia in warm water. Place the garment in the ammonia solution and soak it for 1 hour. Rinse thoroughly and get it hand-washed with a normal detergent. Do the gentle to heavy scrubbing of the stain with a brush, if required. If the stain is responding to the treatment, repeat the steps until the stain is gone and wash it as regular a cloth. If the ink is persistent, then continue with the next step. Ensure that you NEVER ever mix chlorine bleach with ammonia.
Treat with an alcohol and vinegar solution. Mix 1 cup of of vinegar with a cup of rubbing alcohol. Place the stained fabric on a towel to apply the solution over the stained area with a piece of cloth or just use spray bottle. Dab until the stained fabric is thoroughly wet. Give the cloth some soak-in period of at least 5 minutes. Now, put a small amount of table salt over the stained area. Again, relax for 10 more minutes. Do the scrubbing of the stain with a soft brush. Rinse with hot water. Repeat the above steps until the stain is completely gone.
It is in the best interest of the fabric that you keep it clean and stain free as far as possible. The de-staining process is a bit heart breaking at times when it takes off the colour of the garment during the repeated dabbing, washing and rinsing cycle from the patch where the stain was present. So, try to be gentle and away from stains, although the above methods to remove pen stains have been provided to you for your help.