How to Care for Rubber Stamps


Rubber stamps have a wide variety of uses for the amateur hobbyist to the professional, from decorating an envelope to creating invitations and stationery or creating a work of art. According to Alluring Impressions, "commercially made rubber stamping products can be costly." With proper care-which includes cleaning and storage-these rubber stamps will last for years.

Things You'll Need

  • Scrap paper
  • Stamp cleaning solution
  • Mild dish washing soap (optional)
  • Old toothbrush
  • Paper towels
  • Storage container
  • "Stamp off" the rubber stamp. Once you have used the stamp to make the picture you want, press the stamp on scrap paper repeatedly until no more ink comes off the stamp. According to Mere Image, stamping off should be done each time the stamp is used.

  • Press the stamp several times on a paper towel moistened with water. Unless the stamp is dirty, or was used with a glitter ink, this is sufficient for ordinary cleaning.

  • Deep clean the rubber stamp. Use a stamp cleaning solution to deep clean the rubber stamp, especially if permanent ink was used. If you don't have a stamp cleaning solution, use a drop of mild dish washing soap. Remove any cleaning solution from the rubber stamp with a dry towel.

  • Remove stubborn dirt on the rubber stamp by brushing with the cleaning solution and an old tooth brush and then quickly rinsing under running water. Dry on a soft towel. Mere Image recommends allowing to air dry the stamp before storing.

  • Store rubber stamps in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight. A shoe box, plastic container or other storage box in a closet works well. Avoid exposure to excessive heat or humidity.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you cannot find stamp cleaning solution, Alluring Impressions has a recipe for making some.
  • Do not submerse the rubber stamp in water as this will soften the wood and weaken the adhesive in the stamp.
  • Do not use cleaners or other chemicals on the rubber stamp; Alluring Impressions explains that this will break down the rubber and soften the adhesive.

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  • Photo Credit Paula K. Parker
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