How do you get rid of ball point ink on clothes? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I had one of my chemises (the long, 3/4's sleeved lady's undergarment that I wear when we camp for the weekends in the 18th century) in the laundry recently, after a weekend event. In the same wash load were several of Hubby's sweatshirts, one of which had a ballpoint ink pen in the pocket. You can imagine my consternation when I found the pen at the bottom of the washing machine---eeeek!!! Shore, nuff---the ink left a huge bule-black splotch on the front and sleeve of one of my favorite chemeses. It is 100% cotton, and comfy. How would YOU attempt to get the stain out? I await your experienced ideas!

-- Leann Banta (, September 28, 2000


Try hair spray. Spray it on, scrub a bit, wash off with cold water. It may take several times, but may eventually get it out. I have tried it on lesser ink stains and had fairly good luck.

-- R. (, September 28, 2000.

Another idea I thought of, but don't know if it will work with ink. This was taught to me by some of my Asian friends - cook white rice until it is very mushy. After it is cool, work it through the fabric from one side to the other where the stain is at.

I have never tried this solution, so can't testify to its efficaciousness.

-- R. (, September 28, 2000.

milk.. it takes out blood it may work on ink

-- renee oneill (, September 28, 2000.

Put a pad of clean white cloth or paper towels under the area with the stain. Use any of the following; pressing the stain through to the pad - move the pad often to avoid getting ink on other areas. Hairspray, but it has to be the old fashioned kind (remember helmet hair!) to work. Carbon tetrachloride works great, if you know a high school chemistry teacher (don't know where else to get it). I've also used fingernail polish remover and paint remover for small spots - dunking the top in water right after so it wouldn't eat the fabric. Make sure not to throw it in the dryer - it will set the ink for sure. Try a 1 to 8 bleach/water ratio in a spray bottle. If all else fails, how do you feel about a dark blue chemise?!!

-- Polly (, September 28, 2000.

You might also give lighter fluid a try; using the blot process just described.


-- j (, September 28, 2000.

Try 91% rubbing alcohol, use generously. If that does'nt work, go to the hardware store and ask for a chemical type spot remover, usually, carbon tetracloride or similar formula. Use rubber gloves with this stuff. This should work for sure, it's often labeled "For ink removal".

-- Annie Miller (, September 28, 2000.

I've used the hairspray 'recipie', works. Also WD40, can't live without WD40 and Duct tape!

-- Kathy (, September 28, 2000.

Definately try rubbing alcohol until no more of the ink will come out. this will take lots of patience and blotting, as mentioned above. If any remains I would rub it (while still wet) with a bar of Fels Naptha soap and a paste of Borax and let it sit for a while. Just a thought -- never tried it -- but they say SpotShot carpet cleaner also works to remove stains from clothing. It does work great on carpet spots so its worth a try if the above doesn't work. Good luck!

-- connie in NM (, September 28, 2000.

Work vaseline into the ink stain, then wash it well and that should remove it. This trick from my dry cleaner hubby. For a couple years when ball point pens first came out, he was the only dry cleaner in our town that could get it out. (Ooops, I think I just gave away my age!)

-- Hazel in WA (, September 29, 2000.

I'm going to try that vaseline one. We are forever getting ink on things. I love it when I get the ink in the pocket where husband forgot to put the lid on the pen before he put it in there. And even better when I find it after it's been through wash and dryer. (Now I am drying more outside, but in a pinch I still use the dryer) I have had great success with old fashioned hairspray. There is also a new product at Walmart (chemical!) that is made for specific stains. I hate to get it and am almost sure I'm using something I could find elsewhere, but it does work. They also have one for grease stains that has worked for me too.

-- Jennifer (KY) (, September 29, 2000.

Have you tried a pair of scissors? it all ways worked for me.

-- BAUBA (, September 30, 2000.

White milk worked great for me. Chocolate left a stain.

-- jack jerome (, August 30, 2001.

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