The Unexpected Dairy Product That Removes Permanent Marker Stains From Fabric

Accidents happen, but they can be especially challenging to clean up when permanent markers are involved. Luckily, they don't have to be permanent if you have this one dairy product in your fridge; milk. This beverage is all you'll need to remove these tough ink stains. It'll work on everything from your clothes to your couch and even the carpet. 

Permanent markers are extremely difficult to remove from fabric, so why not give milk a try? Just the name "permanent marker" makes it seem impossible to remove. This product has to withstand not only water but non-water-soluble solvents as well. This means that you can't rinse it out or use detergents to get it off. To be given this name, permanent markers are made from an oil or alcohol base with chemicals, pigments, and resin. So, if you accidentally draw on your clothing or furniture with these markers, try cleaning it up with the milk before the stain has a chance to fully set in.

Use milk to pre-treat your clothing

Using milk to remove permanent marker stains is an easy process. However, when you're using this method on clothing, you'll need a lot of milk to cover the entire surface of the stain. Start by placing the ruined shirt or pants in a bucket or a sink with the drain plugged. Then pour in the milk. Allow your clothing to soak for about five hours, but allowing it to soak overnight may deliver better results. 

After enough time has passed, remove your clothing from the milk. Then grab an old toothbrush and scrub what's left of the stain. Continue dipping the brush back into the milk and then using it to remove the marks until they're no longer visible. Now you can place your clothes in the washing machine. Set it to your typical cycle and add your preferred detergent. When it's done, check that the permanent marker stain is completely gone before putting your clothes in the dryer. Otherwise, the heat will cement the mark in place, making it impossible to remove.

Why milk works

So, why is milk able to remove permanent marker stains? This beverage contains various solids, such as whey, casein, and lactose, capable of lifting permanent marker stains from the fabric as it soaks. However, one downside is that milk can also stain your clothes. That's why it's so important to immediately transfer your clothes from the milk to the washing machine after it's done soaking. Otherwise, you may be left with dark or yellow marks.

Additionally, although there may be better methods to remove permanent marker stains, such as using rubbing alcohol or nail polish remover, we believe this is a great option for those who want to avoid using harsh chemicals in their home. Because not only can it remove stains from your clothing but also your furniture. For example, if your couch succumbs to marker stains, quickly fill a bowl with milk and soak a cloth in it. Then, ring out the excess liquid before using it to rub the marker off your couch. Continue dipping the rag in the milk and scrubbing the fabric until the stain is gone. Once it looks clean, use a fresh cloth to rinse out the milk with clean water.