In the world of carpet stains, nail polish may be the most feared and dreaded of them all. A nail polish stain can be virtually impossible to remove but with the right tools and this comprehensive guide, you will be able to extract even the toughest of stains!
The first step to successfully remove a nail polish stain is deciphering whether the polish is wet or if it has dried. Follow the appropriate guide below for your best chance of completely removing nail polish stains.
Wet Nail Polish
- Scoop- Take a metal spoon or knife and scoop up any excess nail polish. It is important to do this gently without applying pressure. Pressure could push the nail polish deeper into the carpet and aggravate the carpet fibers.
- Blot- Blot, don’t scrub! This is the most important rule to removing nail polish. If you scrub the affected area, you will smear the stain. This will also cause the carpet fibers to fray and hold onto the color. Instead, gently pat the area with a clean cloth until the excess nail polish is removed.
- Test- The most effective way to remove nail polish is with nail polish remover. However, nail polish remover is harsh and could damage your carpet. For this reason, it is crucial to test a small area of your carpet to ensure the nail polish remover reacts well.
- Clean- Apply a small amount of nail polish remover to a clean cloth and begin to blot the stained area. Work your way from the outside to the center of the stain. This will keep the stain contained. Avoid pouring nail polish remover directly onto the carpet since it can damage the carpet padding. Continue blotting with nail polish remover until the stain has lifted.
Dry Nail Polish
- Scrape- Use a knife, spoon, or your own fingernails to scrape off the dry nail polish to the best of your ability.
- Vacuum- Vacuum the area to remove the flakes that may have fallen off or embedded itself into the carpet during the scraping process.
- Test- As suggested above, complete a patch test on your carpet using nail polish remover to avoid long-term damage.
- Clean- Apply nail polish remover to a clean cloth and begin to blot the area. Work your way from the outside, in. Continue blotting with nail polish remover until the stain has lifted.
For both types of nail polish stains, it is important to follow up with aftercare to ensure the carpet is clean and to prevent further damage.
- Create a cleaning solution using a drop of dish soap in warm water.
- Take a clean rag and dip it in the solution.
- Blot the affected area to remove any residual stains or nail polish remover.
- Be sure to place a fan or weigh-down a dry towel to absorb any excess water.
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Hairspray Fixes More Than Just Hair
First make sure you blot away any excess polish from the carpet and pour water over the stained area to keep the polish wet and fresh. Then grab your can of hairspray and give the stain around 15-20 sprays until it is completely covered. If you have rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide in the house, a small splash on top of the hair spray will help speed up the stain removal process. Once you have applied your products use a small scrubbing brush or a damp cloth to dab (NOT wipe) at the stain. Keep pouring cold water over it throughout and persevere – it might take longer than you think to get the nail varnish out. Keep scrubbing until the stain is no longer visible and then flush with cold water to remove any excess hair spray.
Nail Varnish Remover
This one seems like a bit of a no brainer, but nail varnish remover is one of the easiest ways to get nail varnish out of your carpet. Again make sure you blot away any excess and keep the stain wet as soon as it appears, and only use an acetone free nail polish remover. This is because an acetone based remover will not only remove the polish but also the colour from your carpet, leaving you with a bleached spot. It can also damage the backing and fibres of the carpet. If you’re not sure, test a small amount of the nail polish remover on a less visible area of carpet. If the carpet discolours or the colour transfers from the carpet to the cloth, don’t use it. If it doesn’t change the carpet or the cloth, it’s probably ok. Soak the area and dab at the stain repeatedly. Don’t wipe the stain, this will only spread the stain. Keep dabbing until the stain disappears.