Why You Should Use Sunscreen To Remove Permanent Marker Stains

Permanent markers can be great tools for many DIYs and home projects. However, while their stains can seem difficult to remove, permanent marker stains may not be as permanent as you think. Whether your kids got into a drawer they weren't supposed to, or you accidentally dropped a marker, don't fear — there's a hack to remove permanent marker stains, and it's this: use sunscreen.

You may have heard of other ways to get rid of permanent marker stains in your house. Some swear by using products such as rubbing alcohol, hairspray, hand sanitizer, or baking soda to remove these stains. However, Mother Could put all these products to the test. After her experiment, in which she drew with a permanent marker on her wall, there was a clear winner: sunscreen. This is because, while almost all the above products can remove stains, sunscreen is more gentle and keeps wall paint intact. While the other products are still great for cleaning around the house, sunscreen is a good option for removing the most common permanent marker stains.

Surfaces that work best with sunscreen

While using sunscreen to remove stains is a great hack, some surfaces may work better than others. If you get marker stains on laminate flooring, skin, or the wall, this hack should work wonderfully. TikToker Terra Jolé demonstrates removing a permanent marker stain from laminate flooring in one of her "Mama Hack Monday" videos (via Tyla). Jolé simply sprays a decent amount of sunscreen over the drawing, then wipes it away with a paper towel, immediately removing the marker completely.

Sunscreen can also be used to remove a permanent marker drawing from the skin. Another TikToker, Bella Avila, demonstrates this. After drawing a line on her arm with a permanent marker, she sprays on sunscreen, and after wiping, it disappears.

If your kids draw on the wall, sunscreen could also be your saving grace. While small scuffs can be removed with fabric softener, you'll need sunscreen to remove a permanent marker stain. Mother Could demonstrates this by drawing a heart on the wall with a red marker. After spraying with sunscreen and wiping, the heart begins to disappear. After the process is repeated three more times, the heart is completely gone. Pro-tip: When spraying the sunscreen, be sure to hold the paper towel under the marker stain, as the sunscreen could cause the marker to bleed.

Surfaces that need other products

While this is a great hack, some surfaces may need other products to remove permanent marker stains. These surfaces include dry erase boards, clothes, and wood furniture or floors. To remove these stains from dry erase boards, try using a dry erase marker; drawing over the permanent marker with one and then wiping will magically remove the stain, as demonstrated by Bella Avila on TikTok.

Additionally, permanent marker on clothes is best removed with either hairspray or hand sanitizer. After applying to the stain, let the spot sit for a few minutes, then clean with a toothbrush lathered with dish soap and water. Finally, wash in the washing machine on the cold water setting.

If you get a permanent marker stain on wood furniture or floors, One Good Thing By Jillee recommends using rubbing alcohol, toothpaste, or, surprisingly, peanut butter to remove the stain. After applying, let the product sit for a few minutes, then dab the area with a wet towel.