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How to get Paint out of Clothes


Find out how to get dried paint out of clothes at TidyMom.net

We’ve been in the middle of working on our family room make over, that I told you about a few months ago.  We decided to wait until the holidays were over to really get started.  As soon as the Christmas tree came down, we got to painting.  I finally decided on Benjamin Moore Coventry Gray and couldn’t be more happy!!  It’s the perfect gray!  I can’t wait to share some pictures of the progress soon.   

During the painting, my husband happened to walk thru the room with his favorite coat on and brushed a corner with fresh paint……and you guessed it, he ended up with paint on the sleeve.  You should have seen the disappointment in his face when he told me about it – after it was dry.

I told him, no worries, I know a little trick that should get dry paint out of clothes, and since the jacket was machine washable, it should come right out!  This method is 99% effective, and is worth a try!  Since you already have paint on the garment, you don’t have much left to lose.

Find out how to get dried paint out of clothes at TidyMom.net

All you need is a wet cloth, 91% Isopropyl alcohol (aka rubbing alcohol, you can get at the drug store) and a brush.

How to get paint out of clothes:

  1. use a wet cloth to get the area with the paint wet – it doesn’t need to be soaking wet, just dab it with the wet cloth until the fabric is wet.
  2. saturate the paint stain with Isopropyl  alcohol 
  3. use your brush to scrub until the paint is no longer visible.   (if needed, add a little more alcohol while scrubbing)  you will see the paint break down and crumble
  4. place garment in washer and launder according to label.

that’s it!!

It should look as good as new!


Find out how to get dried paint out of clothes at TidyMom.net

He’s a happy man again!……and you get a little sneak peek at my beautiful gray walls! 😉


more by Cheryl »

Cheryl Sousan

A self-proclaimed neat freak, Cheryl chronicles her journey through homemaking on her blog, TidyMom.net, where she shares recipes, tutorials, crafting and her ever-growing love for photography. This St. Louis mom juggles her passion for life, her daughters and her tiger-loving husband, all while her obsession with tidiness cleans up the trail blazed behind her. Google+

59 Responses to “How to get Paint out of Clothes”

  1. Sandy @ RE posted on February 5, 2014 at 12:33 pm (#

    I always wanted to know how to do this! Thanks for the great tip, Cheryl!

  2. Jake's a Girl posted on February 5, 2014 at 12:37 pm (#

    Yay!!! :) Thank You!!! I wish I’d had this when I brushed up against a painted table with my favorite black dress pants.
    Like you said, Since you already have paint on the garment, you don’t have much left to lose. So true and will be worth the try.

    Thanks again, JaG

  3. Leigh Anne Wilkes @YourHomebasedMom posted on February 5, 2014 at 1:09 pm (#

    Awesome tip! Wish I had known this years ago!!!

  4. Brenda @ SweetSimpleStuff posted on February 5, 2014 at 1:28 pm (#

    Thank you!!! Perfect timing … I’m painting tomorrow! Pinned!

  5. Kerri posted on February 5, 2014 at 2:10 pm (#

    They are remodeling my husband’s office and he got paint on his favorite dress shirt this morning. I’ll be trying this tonight. Great timing on this trick!

  6. Carolyn posted on February 5, 2014 at 2:42 pm (#

    Wow. That’s is a fantastic tip, Cheryl!

  7. Sue posted on February 5, 2014 at 4:20 pm (#

    I’ve tried this method several times and is works pretty well UNLESS the paint has been left for a long period of time. Then, it might or might not come out. Mixed results but I guess if you leave something for a long time, who cares? LOL

    • TidyMom replied on February 6th, 2014 at 9:48 am

      lol right! I didn’t get to this jacket for about a week.

  8. Norma | Allspice and Nutmeg posted on February 6, 2014 at 7:16 am (#

    I”m so glad you shared this. I’ve ruined an item or 2 with paint. Now it doesn’t have to go to the trash. I wonder how this works on carpet….

    • TidyMom replied on February 6th, 2014 at 9:23 am

      i haven’t tried that – but let me know if you do!

  9. Nicole @ Daily Dish posted on February 6, 2014 at 7:20 am (#

    Cheryl, I need this post! I just ruined a sweater I’ve only had for a few weeks and I was seriously about to toss. Your post was destined for me this morning. hahah Thanks girl. Stay warm!

  10. Vickie posted on February 6, 2014 at 8:16 am (#

    Great timing for me also as I had gotten a drip of paint on a long sleeved t-shirt my daughter had given me from the college she is currently attending and it was a favorite shirt. Now, any ideas how to get grease spots out of carpet?

  11. Molly M posted on February 6, 2014 at 9:21 am (#

    You just saved my 3 yr olds favorite dress! Thank you! She’ll be one happy girl again!

  12. Crystal posted on February 6, 2014 at 9:40 am (#

    Awesome tip!! Do you know how many shirts, shorts, pants, etc., that we have thrown away because of paint? It’s sickening especially since we are always painting it seems. My husband likes to change things up every year. Last year we bought new living room furniture so I didn’t have to paint…yay!! Thanks so much for this tip!!! Pinning :)

  13. Auntiepatch posted on February 6, 2014 at 12:07 pm (#

    I wore my new leather jacket to Home Depot and got paint on it OFF A BASKET when I leaned over to pet a dog riding in it! Will this work on leather???

  14. Coco in the KItchen posted on February 6, 2014 at 12:09 pm (#

    I’m so trying this tonight. I’ve got paint splats on an old quilt and didn’t know how to get it cleaned.
    Your hubby looks happy.

  15. Allie | Baking a Moment posted on February 6, 2014 at 2:41 pm (#

    This is such a great tip, Cheryl! I wish I had known about this years ago… PS- I love Coventry Gray! I have it in my dining room 😉 Good luck with the reno!

  16. Lana @ Never Enough Thyme posted on February 6, 2014 at 8:04 pm (#

    Fantastic tip, Cheryl! Does it work with both acrylic and oil-based paints?

    • TidyMom replied on February 7th, 2014 at 8:43 am

      as far as I know, just acrylic

  17. joanne posted on February 6, 2014 at 8:38 pm (#

    Any suggestions for removing wood stain from fabric?
    The stain is on the bottom of my Coach purse. It’s very special to me because it was a gift from my son. I emailed Coach and went to two stores but they couldn’t help me. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

    • Toni replied on February 7th, 2014 at 3:46 am

      Have you taken to a good quality paint store or contacted a marine company that is involved in staining of boats…stains are like paints…water base or oil base…and I do believe that in the past I have heard their is a product that removes stain…I am curious how a wood stain ended up on the fabric…I have left projects swearing I didn’t bump into anything only to be “surprised” as go how many spots I had on me…good luck

      • joanne replied on February 7th, 2014 at 10:49 am

        Toni…thanks for the suggestion. I’ll try a paint store.
        I had essential oil in my purse. It leaked out, went through the purse and removed the stain on my table top. It’s a pretty big stain on the bottom of my purse. Won’t do that again!
        Thanks again,

  18. Toni posted on February 7, 2014 at 3:29 am (#

    Does this work on oil base paint…That’s where I run into trouble…love all the tips that you offer…have a great day

  19. Cheryl posted on February 7, 2014 at 7:15 am (#

    Thanks for the tip!
    The wall color looks great!

  20. Accidentally Wonderful posted on February 7, 2014 at 10:53 am (#

    What a great tip! I actually have a pair of shorts to try this out on! I’d love it if you’d share this at my link party, going on now!

  21. Heather {Woods of Bell Trees} posted on February 8, 2014 at 1:21 am (#

    Awesome tip! I get paint on my clothes ALL the time! Now I don’t have to keep them as junk clothes anymore! YAY!

  22. Barb @ FL Mom's Blog posted on February 8, 2014 at 12:42 pm (#

    Thanks, Cheryl! Both my husband and our son have dried paint on varied pieces of clothing! I plan to use your tip when I get the chance to work on their paint stains!

  23. Candie posted on August 12, 2014 at 8:30 am (#

    I am an artist by trade and hobby. I own my own business where I do a little of everything from woodworking to painting to sewing. I have painted since I was a small child and while I normally have sets of clothes that I wear that are safe for getting all kinds of paint on, there are always those times you get paint where you don’t want it! I also teach a lot of classes in my professional life and my students of all ages even when I tell them please don’t wear nice clothes to class will always manage to get something on them! This will help me give them a method to get the paint from their clothes! Thanks so much for sharing this! I will be using it this week in a class on Wednesday! Oh, one other thing, all of these people mentioning throwing things away that have a little paint on them. There are a lot of people out there that need clothing very badly and will wear it as is or like me know some way of doing something else with it like making something new. Just because it has a little paint splattered on it doesn’t make it something you have to trash! Consider donating it to your local Goodwill store! Someone in the world somewhere will have something good to use it for! Just a thought! I am a BIG person for recycling and hate to see good fabric go in the trash!

  24. Dream posted on September 11, 2014 at 8:52 pm (#

    Wow, very simple way, thanks for sharing.

  25. ALLIE posted on September 25, 2014 at 4:42 pm (#

    Will it work on leather?

    • ALLIE replied on September 25th, 2014 at 4:43 pm

      like fake leather

  26. Mimi posted on October 4, 2014 at 11:06 am (#

    Thank you Sooo much! I came home with some new paint I wanted to try, so instead of taking the time to change clothes, I dove right in with my best jeans, since I was ONLY painting a small table and I was ONLY going to paint on one swipe, AND I was using chalk paint, which is a lot thicker than regular acrylic. Two coats of paint later… I look down and there are spots all over my favorite pants (surprise, surprise)! No need to panic, because I already had this pinned, tried it today and it worked! THANKS AGAIN : )

  27. Sarah Moore posted on October 29, 2014 at 9:01 pm (#

    Thank you, thank you! This worked on my daughter’a jacket tonight. 
    So happy! 

  28. Jane posted on November 8, 2014 at 3:38 am (#

    Success! One of my favourite skirts saved. Thank you!

  29. Megan posted on December 21, 2014 at 12:17 am (#

    It worked great on my track suit.

  30. momof5 posted on January 3, 2015 at 7:03 pm (#

    So excited! My son got paint on his heavy fleece on a work trip, and it came right out! Thanks.

  31. Catherine posted on January 18, 2015 at 10:12 pm (#

    @Joanne Make your own solution for wood stain stains! 2 parts peroxide and 1 part BLUE dawn dish soap! It took my wood stain stains right out of my carpet! If you are confused, search pinterest for “best stain remover” and you should see it pop up somewhere!

  32. Joy posted on February 13, 2015 at 12:11 am (#

    Yeah! There is hope for my brand new skirt! I teach elementary art and one of my students dropped his paint brush on my brand new skirt! 

  33. Melissa posted on February 13, 2015 at 1:28 pm (#

    Thank you for this! I got acrylic paint on my brand new shirt and I was so sad. I found your website and went through the steps and the paint is gone! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  34. Josh posted on March 1, 2015 at 3:23 pm (#

    This was fantastically easy, and that’s coming from a male college student who isn’t quite able to fold his own laundry. I just salvaged 120 dollars of clothes, thanks a ton!

  35. cherrie posted on March 5, 2015 at 6:58 pm (#

    so good to know as I do paint lots of crafts and often get paint on my shirt or pants! thanks for the great tip!

  36. Margaret Jackson posted on March 14, 2015 at 10:00 pm (#

    A lot of paint had dried on the arm of my favorite
    sweater.  I tried your idea today (with the 91% 
    alcohol), and it worked perfectly.  Thank you
    so much.

  37. Me Ellis posted on April 11, 2015 at 8:24 am (#

    Thank you so very much! My son got paint on a nice pair of slacks and asked me how to get it out, I of course went to the internet,and found you article!! I’m going to surprise him with his paint free pants..I’m sure he’ll be very happy and wear those pants to church on Sunday!!! Thank you..

  38. Rose Marie posted on April 24, 2015 at 10:47 am (#

    Do you know if this method of paint removal will work for upholstery? We dripped paint on our couch and it’s been there for awhile now. Yikes!

  39. Ash posted on May 13, 2015 at 2:09 am (#

    Thanks Alot

  40. Muriel posted on May 17, 2015 at 4:05 pm (#

    I just used this method to remove aqua chalk paint from a white linen blouse and it worked!  I couldn’t believe how easily it came out!

  41. Cyndi posted on June 11, 2015 at 10:32 am (#

    Thank you so much! I accidentally got paint on a new shirt when I was checking out the end tables I was redoing! Fingers crossed it works! :)

  42. Anna posted on June 14, 2015 at 10:00 pm (#

    Thank you! Saved my husbands work shirt. Didn’t want to throw it out because it had customised embroidery. Now I don’t have to. Much appreciated. :)

  43. Mary posted on July 7, 2015 at 10:47 am (#

    WOW! Amazing and amazingly easy! Thank you so much.

  44. Judy posted on July 21, 2015 at 1:23 pm (#

    Thanks for the tip!   I had a North Face jacket with paint on it and it came out beautifully!!!   I will pass this on!

  45. Angela posted on August 7, 2015 at 10:35 am (#

    I just tired this on a spot that happened 4+ years ago. The jacket has been washed several times since and I had given up hope of ever getting out the paint. Well, it worked! I am beyond excited to have the jacket back I my wardrobe!


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