Removing Dry Erase Marker Stains from Clothes – A Comprehensive Guide

how to get dry erase marker out of clothes


Dry erase markers are fantastic tools for brainstorming, teaching, and creative expression. However, their ink can be quite stubborn when it ends up on your clothing. A simple mistake can result in an unsightly stain that can be challenging to remove. Fortunately, with the right techniques and a little patience, you can rescue your clothes from these stains. In this article, we’ll explore several methods to get dry erase markers out of clothes effectively.

Act Quickly

The key to successfully removing dry erase marker stains from clothing is acting promptly. The longer the stain sits, the more challenging it becomes to eliminate. As soon as you notice the stain, begin the removal process.

Gather Your Supplies

Before you start, make sure you have the following supplies on hand

  • Rubbing alcohol or isopropyl alcohol
  • Cotton balls or clean white cloth
  • Liquid dish soap
  • A toothbrush
  • A plastic knife or scraper
  • Laundry detergent
  • Cold water
  • A washing machine

Pretest in an Inconspicuous Area

It’s essential to test your chosen stain-removal method on an inconspicuous area of the fabric first to ensure it won’t damage or discolour the garment. If you notice any adverse effects, choose an alternative method.

Blot the Stain

If the dry erase marker stain is still wet, gently blot it with a clean, dry cloth to absorb as much of the ink as possible. Avoid rubbing, as this can spread the stain.

Alcohol Method

This method is highly effective for removing dry erase marker stains. Here’s how to do it

  • Place a clean white cloth or a few cotton balls underneath the stained area to prevent the ink from spreading to other parts of the fabric.
  • Soak another cloth or cotton ball in rubbing alcohol.
  • Dab the stain gently, working from the outside in, to avoid spreading the ink further.
  • Continue blotting until the stain disappears. It may take a few attempts.

Toothbrush and Dish Soap Method

If you prefer a gentler approach or have concerns about using alcohol, try this method

  • Apply a small amount of liquid dish soap to the stain.
  • Gently rub the fabric together to work the soap into the stain.
  • Use a toothbrush to scrub the stained area gently.
  • Rinse the garment under cold running water. Check to see if the stain is gone; if not, repeat the process until it is.

Scrape Off Excess Ink

For stubborn, dried-on stains, start by carefully scraping off as much excess ink as possible using a plastic knife or scraper. Be cautious not to damage the fabric during this step.

Laundry Detergent Method

For heavy or set-in stains, try this method

  • Apply a small amount of liquid laundry detergent to the stain.
  • Gently rub the fabric together to work the detergent into the stain.
  • Let the garment sit for 10-15 minutes to allow the detergent to penetrate the ink.
  • Rinse the stain under cold running water.
  • If the stain remains, repeat the process until it disappears.

Machine Wash

Once you’ve successfully removed the dry erase marker stain, wash the garment as you normally would. Use cold water and a mild detergent, and follow the care instructions on the clothing label.

Inspect Before Drying

Before you put the garment in the dryer, check to make sure the stain is entirely gone. Drying a stained garment can set the ink and make it much more challenging to remove. If the stain remains, repeat the stain-removal process until it disappears.


For persistent stains that still won’t budge, consider laying the garment out in direct sunlight. Sunlight can naturally bleach and fade stains over time. Be patient and repeat this process if necessary.


What removes dry erase marker stains?

Vinegar and Water is the undisputed champion for removing old dry erase markers. Ammonia does a great job when used on the correct type of dry erase ink.

Does rubbing alcohol get dry erase markers out of clothes?

Use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Rub the marker stain from the edge to the centre to make it less. When the marks from the dry erase marker are almost gone, you will need to wash and dry these clothes as usual. The stains will disappear.


Removing dry erase marker stains from clothing can be a tricky task, but with the right techniques and some patience, you can salvage your garments and extend their life. Act quickly, use the appropriate stain-removal methods, and be prepared to repeat the process if necessary. With these strategies at your disposal, your clothes can stay pristine, even in the face of accidental dry erase marker mishaps.

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