How To Get Different Types Of Paint Out Of Clothes

Looking at giving your home a revamp by breaking out a fresh colour of paint? Of course, we recommend you wear old clothing or an overall to get the job done, but we’re here to help you should you forget and get some paint on your favourite top or pair of jeans. 

Before reaching for any of the products listed below, read your laundry label to make sure the item of clothing won’t get damaged. Head on over to our article on how to read laundry symbols for any help you may need. 

Once you’ve determined what method will work best, then it’s time to spring to action ASAP to give the stain less time to set. 

3 Methods To Remove Water-Based Paint From Clothes

Water-based or latex paint is the more common type of paint that needs removing. Luckily there are a number of different, painless ways this can be done, all by using common household products. 

1. Using Hand Sanitiser To Remove Water-Based Paint

The start of the new decade a couple of years ago brought with it an abundance of hand sanitiser for obvious reasons. With the surplus of this product, it’s a good idea to use it if you ever need to remove paint from your clothes.

Start by covering the stained area with hand sanitiser before scrubbing it with a toothbrush. Use hairspray together with the sanitiser for tougher stains. Rinse the stained area with water, and once you’ve made sure the paint is gone, your clothes are ready to be washed and dried as per usual. 


  1. Cover the stained area with sanitiser.
  2. Scrub with a toothbrush. 
  3. Rinse and repeat if need be.

2. Using Dishwashing Liquid To Remove Water-Based Paint

Grab the dishwashing liquid from under your sink and use it to help you get rid of the paint stain in an effortless manner. 

Rinse your stained clothing with warm water before blotting it with a cloth that’s been soaked in water and dishwashing liquid. After letting the solution sink in for 5 minutes, scrub the stained area and then rinse it with warm water again. Once the paint has been completely removed, wash your item of clothing as you normally would in cold water. 


  1. Rinse the stained area with warm water.
  2. Blot with water and dishwashing liquid using a cloth.
  3. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before scrubbing.
  4. Rinse with warm water. 

3. Using Hairspray to Remove Water-Based Paint

Hairspray is a great tool for removing a number of different stains. 

Start by spraying the stained area with your hairspray until it’s completely covered. As mentioned above, you can use this in conjunction with hand sanitiser for stronger stains that are difficult to remove. Use an old toothbrush to then scrub the stain before rinsing it with warm water. Once it’s completely removed your clothes are ready to be washed as per usual. 


  1. Cover the stained area with hairspray. 
  2. Scrub with a toothbrush.
  3. Rinse with warm water. 

How To Get Oil-Based Paint Out Of Clothes

Getting oil-based paint out of your clothing will not be as easy as it is with water-based paint, but it is still doable nonetheless. If the stain has set in for longer and is dry, start by softening it with a paint thinner (preferably one that the paint manufacturer recommends). 

If you’re still dealing with wet paint, scrape off as much as you can before using a clean white cloth to start blotting. Once you’ve blotted up as much as possible, rinse the stained area and then place the item of clothing (with the stain facing downwards) on white paper towels or cloths. Dab the stain with turpentine until there is no more paint to be removed. Remember to replace the cloths or paper towels as you go along. Apply dishwashing liquid to the stained area and let it sit overnight. Rinse the mixture out and your clothes are then ready to be washed normally again. 


  1. For dry paint, soften with a paint thinner. For wet paint, scrape off and blot with a clean white cloth.
  2. Rinse and place clothing (stain facing downwards) on white paper towels or cloths.
  3. Dab with turpentine until the stain is gone. 
  4. Let clothing sit overnight with dishwashing liquid on the stained area. 
  5. Rinse and wash as per usual.

How To Get Acrylic Paint Out Of Clothes

Of the 3 types of paint spoken about in this article, removing acrylic paint is the easiest to do. You can use either laundry detergent or dishwashing liquid for this process. Rinse the stained area with warm water before using a sponge or cloth with equal parts water and your chosen product to wipe away the stain. Keep repeating this process until the stain is removed then wash as per usual. 


  1. Rinse the stained area with warm water.
  2. Wipe the stain away using a sponge or cloth with water and dishwashing liquid/laundry detergent.
Fun Fact:
The process for removal of acrylic paints can also be used for spray paint. 

Now that you are clued up on removing different types of paint from your clothes, the idea of repainting the walls of that one room might not be as bad as it sounds. Share these tips and tricks with those around you the next time you see them going paint shopping. 

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