How to Remove Acrylic Paint From Clothes

Acrylic paint spills can be removed with soap and water if you act quickly enough.
Acrylic paint spills can be removed with soap and water if you act quickly enough. (Image: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images)

Acrylic paint is a versatile water-based substance that can provide vibrant colors to any project, but when it gets on your clothing it can be difficult or impossible to remove with washing alone. Once acrylic paint dries, it can become water-resistant, so work quickly to remove the stain. For dried-on stains, acetone can help dissolve the acrylic paint. You can find acetone at most beauty supply, hardware and home improvement stores.

Things You'll Need

  • Butter knife or paint scraper
  • Dish detergent
  • Sponge
  • Acetone
  • Cotton cloth

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Scrape off any paint with a butter knife or paint scraper.

Rinse the clothing under warm, running water to remove as much paint as possible. Allow the water to soak through, reaching the back of the stained fabric.

Mix equal parts dish detergent and warm water in a container. Dip a sponge into the solution and apply it to the paint stain. Press and blot the stain vigorously to remove the paint from the fabric. Rinse the fabric with warm water and continue scrubbing the stain until it is gone.

Remove any remaining stain by blotting it with a cotton cloth partially soaked in acetone. Don't use on fabrics with acetate or triacetate. Wash the fabric as usual.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure you know the type of paint before you start this process.
  • Fabric type should be known too, as certain fabrics may be damaged more by this home remedy.
  • Keep acetone away from open flames or sparks.


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