How To Get Ink Out Of Clothes With Hairspray

One of the most convenient places to keep a ballpoint pen at work or while kids are at school is in the breast pocket. It can happen to nearly everyone when they see the blue stain of ballpoint pen ink appear from nowhere as their pen leaks.

The problem is how to get rid of the stain from the fabric without too much effort and damaging your clothes. One way to remove ink from clothing is an old method where you spray hairspray on ink stains.

Here, you can find out how to get ink out of clothes with hairspray works as effectively as people report?

Hairspray to Get Ink Out of Clothes

Does Hairspray Remove Stains?

Before going too far, you need to know that when you use hairspray on ink stains may not work as well as it used to. However, this does depend on the brand of hairspray you use.

Hairsprays used to be alcohol-based, and it was this compound, which broke down the ballpoint pen ink; and thus enabling you to remove it. Rather than search for a hair spray that still contains alcohol, you only need to whip out a bottle of rubbing alcohol to remove ink stains.

Can You Use Hairspray to Get Ink Out of Clothes?

You may find this method has been around for years and proven effective for stain removal on fabric.

It is as simple as spraying hairspray onto the ink-stained garment and waiting for 30 seconds for the liquid to break down the ink. Once it soaks in, take a clean damp cloth, and gently wipe away the stain.

How Do You Get Dried Pen Ink Out of Clothes?

If you need to get pen ink out of fabric when it is still wet, you can carry out ink removal, hairspray method being a good example.

However, if you are faced with how to remove ink from clothing once the stain is dry, this can be very different. An ink stain that had dried in many cases can be fixed in place.

Here is all you need to know about how to remove ink on clothing or get pen out of fabric. The ink type in question is oil-based and usually hard to remove as they are fast drying for use when writing. (Read Bleach Stain Remover)

First, you need to gather your things to enable you to remove your ink stains.

  • Ethanol or rubbing alcohol (can use hand sanitizer if the alcohol content is high)
  • Cotton balls
  • Absorbent cloth or paper towel (white not colored)
  • Laundry detergent
  • Timer and your sink

Hacks to Remove Ink Stains from Clothing

Steps how to get ink out of clothing

You do need to find a solvent that is suitable for your fabric. Ethanol is the main ingredient, and this is what you find in your rubbing alcohol, sanitizer, and some hairsprays.

Position the absorbent material underneath the stain and laid flat. Doing this does two things. It stops the ink from spreading to other areas, and it soaks up the ink as it wets again. Be sure, there is just one portion of your t-shirt or shirt against the material, even if there are two stains. You need to treat each one individually.

Apply your solvent using a cotton ball. Soak this in your alcohol and gently dab against the stain. If you use hand sanitizer, then you need to liberally soak the stain and rub it around the stain to get the liquid into the fabric. (Learn How to Use Baking Soda in Laundry)

Set your timer and let the solution sit for up to 5 minutes depending on how long it takes the inks to break down. Keep the stain damp by adding more alcohol or hand sanitizer.

Begin blotting the stain with a clean, dry cloth. Here, you will see the ink is drawn to the cloth. It will also pass through the material to the absorbent material underneath.

You may need to repeat the above steps by moving the cloth or using a new paper towel to a clean area and dabbing with clean cotton or cloth.

Once the ink stain has been removed by almost 90%, then you can rub some laundry detergent on the faded ink stain and let it soak into the material. The last step of stain removal is to rinse the material with warm water.

What Takes Ink Out of Clothes?

Here are a few laundry hacks you can use to remove ink stains from clothing with household products.

Aside from the materials used in the above steps, you can use some baby wipes, a cotton swab, nail polish remover, or anything you can see that contains solvents.

Luckily, water-based inks don’t generally require these and just blotting the stain before washing can be enough to remove them. One thing to be cautious of is the type of material, so you do need to test a small area. Be sure not to use bleach on colored fabric, or you can ruin your clothes.

Nail Polish Remover

It can work very effectively, yet it is one which can damage some fabrics. To use, follow the same blotting method as above and then wash in the washing machine following the care label. Keep the area ventilated, as this may smell.


If you have a delicate fabric and you are not sure whether to use chemicals with solvents, you can try soaking your stain in milk overnight. Once you take it out, wash in a regular manner, and check if the stain has gone.

Vinegar & Cornstarch

Begin by wetting the stain with vinegar. While it soaks, make a paste with two parts of vinegar and three parts of cornstarch. Work this into the fabric. Once you have covered all the stain, let it air dry, and then you can proceed with washing the item.

While all the above are great ways how to get ink out of clothes or fabrics, it doesn’t mean all of them can delete ink stains. However, one thing never to do is dry your clothing in the dryer when it shows signs of an ink stain.

Doing this can set them permanently, and none of the ways above can remove the ink stains.

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How To Get Ink Out Of Clothes With Hairspray

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