How to remove ink stains

Question; Ink stains are nearly impossible to remove–at least for me. Any suggestions?

Answer; They  are for me also, next question.

There are three types of ink: oil based ink, straight ink and indelible ink.

Oil based ink; found in a ball point pen.

Straight ink; is in every one’s favorite type of pens the uniball, gel pens and old fashion fountain pens.

Indelible ink; that’s the type in permanent markers.

As always test the garment for color fastness before you start because if you remove the color with the ink the garment in useless.

First the easy one, ball point pen has a oil based ink so if you remove the oil the ink will go with it. Any good oil remover will do such as dish washing liquid or a citrus based products from the store.

Step 1; Apply oil remover to ink stain.

Step 2; Lightly tap the ink with a tooth bush to work in the oil remover.

Step 3; Wash garment.

Straight ink is difficult. A small dot on your garment is highly concentrated with ink and as soon as you start to work on it the ink will spread out of control. You can start with a oil base removers and move into stronger solvents such as paint removers and paint thinners.

Step 1; Fold a paper towel several times to make a thick absorbent pad and place that under the ink stain.

Step 2; Make a large ring around the ink with the oil remover to lubricate the material so it will not absorb as much of the ink as it spreads, then add product directly to the ink itself. use a small scrapper to work the product into the ink stain for a few minutes.

Step 3; Blot up as much of the product and ink as possible.

Step 4; Repeat the first three steps until all the in has been removed or no more ink is coming off.

Step 5; If the first four step did not remove all the ink use a stronger product such as the paint removers and repeat the first four steps.

Step 6; Wash garment.

This is not a green toxic free way of removing the stain, but ink is not designed to be removed.

The best for last, indelible ink.

Step 1; Take the garment to the trash can and throw it away.

Step 2; Say what ever !@#$%^&*%$#@# you want to make you feel better.

Karl Huie

Pacific Heights Cleaners your non toxic alternative serving San Francisco, and  Sausalito.

The First Dry Cleaners to be Certified Green By San Francisco Environment and

The Bay Area Green Business Program Marin County.

Other Articles of Interest:

How to remove shiny seams

I have a sweater with color faded, and white spots.

Can I wash these dry clean only pants?

How to Evaluate Materials and Test for Colorfastness

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