How to Remove Hair Dye From a Counter

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Cover your counters so your hair dye doesn't accidentally stain them.
Image Credit: Liountmila Korelidou/iStock/GettyImages

The perfect shade of hair dye will bring out the best in your eyes and skin and the worst in your countertops. That batch of Golden Chestnut or Intense Blonde will eventually get dyed or cut out of your hair. Meanwhile, spilled dye left on your counters may linger there forever. At least you can admire your new 'do in the mirror while you're working on scrubbing away the dye.

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Removing Hair Dye From Counters

There are no guarantees that any DIY solution will totally remove a hair dye stain. How well a particular cleaning method will work depends on how old the stain is, the shade/formula of the dye and the material of the countertop. Luckily, there are a bunch of options you can try using products you probably already own.

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A melamine foam sponge (commonly known as a Magic Eraser) may work wonders on a recent hair dye spill. Wet the sponge first and then gently rub it over one section of the stain. Check to make sure you're not causing any damage to the counter's finish. If not, scrub the area more vigorously, dampening the sponge again if necessary.

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If this strategy doesn't work, using baking soda might. This common cleaning agent may be used in a few ways on a hair dye stain. Rubbing a paste of vinegar and baking soda into the spot followed by a damp cloth might lighten it. Alternatively, baking soda can be mixed with dish soap or water to create a spreadable paste.

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Trying Other Options

A Magic Eraser or baking soda potion won't always remove hair dye from counters. If these methods don't work for any reason, the next thing to try is basic dish soap. Squirt some soap over the area and use a sponge and plenty of elbow grease to vigorously scrub the soap into the stain. Scrub for at least 30 seconds before determining whether this strategy is working.

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Another potential DIY method is rubbing with alcohol or nail polish remover. Soak a cotton ball with either liquid and rub it over the dye, checking after every pass to make sure you're not damaging the counter. Bathroom cleaner spray and even toothpaste are other things to try on a counter stained with hair dye.

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Removing Dye From Wood Counters

Most bathroom and kitchen countertops are made of laminate, tile or another hard material that largely repels stains. If your home has wooden countertops that have been splashed with hair dye, your cleaning options are somewhat limited because dye may be absorbed into the wood before you can remove it all. There are still some options that may remove or lighten the stains.

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First, try using a mixture of equal parts water and bleach, taking extra care while handling the bleach. Wearing gloves, dampen a cloth in the mixture and rub it over the stain. White vinegar or scouring powder may also work to remove hair dye from wooden counters.

Note that painted or untreated wood may be damaged by certain DIY cleaning methods. It may be easier to resign yourself to repainting or staining the entire countertop.

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