Removing Ink On Leather (Brands To Use & Avoid)

Cleaning leather can be a bother to most people, especially if the stain is ink from a pen or a texture. It can seem really difficult to remove, but what if I told you that you can do it with different methods.

Here Is How You Can Remove Ink From Leather With Some Brands And Methods:

Removing Ink is possible on leather with different cleaning applications and some brands. Here are some methods you can try:
Magic Eraser
Rubbing Alcohol
Baking Soda
Soap and Water

Any of the above you should do a small test to see how it works before fully applying to your leather. It is also advised to try only one of these methods at a time (not multiple products together as they ingredients can react to other).

Methods you should avoid at all costs:
Nail Polish Remover

Below in this article we have listed the best methods to remove ink from leather. Plus some to avoid with great details on each method for you to read, this is so you can work out what would be suitable to use to remove that pesky ink from your leather. Thanks for reading.

Can You Remove Ink From Leather?

Ink splatters can charm the toughest of leathers. However, with the right products and a little elbow grease, that ink stain on your leather purse or jacket can disappear easily.

Here are three ways to remove ink from your leather items:

1. Remove excess ink by blotting up as much as possible and using a damp cloth or sponge to soak up any remaining stains. Apply an inconsiderable amount of saddle soap onto a soft cloth and rub gently over the ink. Then wipe the surface with another damp cloth to remove any excess soap. Then take a hair dryer on its lowest setting and gently blow hot air onto the ink until it becomes dry again.

2. Fill a tub with warm water before adding ¼ cup of dishwashing liquid; stir until mixed. Soak your leather item in the tub for five minutes, then scrub with an old toothbrush to remove the ink. If necessary, reapply the mixture to your item and repeat this process twice, then wipe dry with a soft cloth or sponge.

3. Prepare a large bowl of hot water, then add two tablespoons of facial cleanser; stir until mixed. Soak your leather item in the tub for 30 seconds, then scrub gently with an old toothbrush to remove the ink. If necessary, reapply the mixture to your item and repeat this process twice, then wipe dry with a soft cloth or sponge.

Make particle size difference between the ink stain and towel. If you want to try this method, use water-soluble tape on the item you want to remove ink and allow it to dry completely. Wet heavy-duty paper towels, then blot up as much as possible of the excess water as you rub gently against it.

Brands And Products You Can Use To Remove Ink From Leather

Magic Eraser

By gently scrubbing away the ink with this sponge-like foam, it’s possible to erase an ink stain in as little as 10 minutes for some types of inks (though be advised that not every type of ink will come off cleanly).

All you should do is cut the eraser into small pieces, then rub the portion of the eraser that will come in contact with the stain over the stain. Wait a few seconds and continue rubbing until all of the ink comes off. Then use water to rinse it and wipe it dry.

A magic eraser’s abrasive properties make it an ideal tool for more than just removing ink stains from your leather furniture – you can also use it for polishing. The eraser’s coarse finish allows it to polish and buff hard surfaces, including glass and marble. When finished but not overly wet, you can use the eraser to give your leather furniture a soft sheen for a more professional look.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is an ingredient found in many household cleaning products, but most people don’t realize its usefulness for removing ink stains on your favorite pieces of clothing and personal items.

One way you can use this is by placing the item in question on top of a plastic bag (to avoid any damage) and pouring rubbing alcohol over it until it’s fully soaked before leaving overnight. In the morning, your clothes will be completely clean and back to their original state!

If you have a permanent marker stain on your leather furniture, it is best to immediately remove the excess stains using a wet paper towel, dabbing gently. After that, you should dampen a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and gently rub the stained area until the ink is gone. Air-dry it in a well-ventilated area to avoid discoloration.

If you have ink stains on leather clothing or shoes, you can use this method by dampening a cloth with rubbing alcohol and cleaning away any loose ink from the surface. Afterward, you can use a hair dryer to blow on the stained area gently so it dries at a faster pace.

The critical thing to remember about using rubbing alcohol to remove ink from leather is that it should be done after the marking appears, or else the ink will linger for much longer! Prevent this by keeping a bottle of alcohol in your home or office and marking any stains as soon as you find them. Be sure to give your garments and furniture a rubdown with this solution every other month to keep up with your maintenance schedule.

Baking Soda

Drawing and painting on leather can be a great way to personalize your belongings, but the ink might not always want to come off. Fortunately, baking soda is the solution!

1. Mix 1 tablespoon baking soda with four tablespoons of water in a small bowl or cup. If you’re only removing one stain, mix as much water as needed until it’s slightly runny. You can add more water if you have multiple stains that need to be removed too! Stir until the baking soda is dissolved.

2. Rub the mixture onto the stain. Use a brush (maybe a toothbrush) for application to the stain. If it helps, lay some paper towels over the area and let it sit for 30 minutes to absorb as much of the baking soda as possible.

3. Once you’ve removed all traces of ink, rinse the leather with soap and warm water, and if necessary, pat dry with a clean towel.


Ink stains are easier to remove from leather than other fabrics because leather is an absorbent material-it soaks up ink stains like a sponge. Acetic acid in vinegar chemically reacts with the ink to help it dissolve in water. When applied directly to the ink stain, vinegar can lift and disperse it so you can easily rinse it away.

Not all dyes or fabrics react well with vinegar. Before trying vinegar as a stain remover:

1. Test a small area of your fabric or furniture first.

2. If the ink stain disappears when you apply vinegar, rinse the area thoroughly and direct the stream of water to the stained area.

3. If you have trouble removing the ink stain completely with vinegar, try using a commercial dye removal product.

Soap And Water

Soap and water will work well to remove fresh ink from leather goods. To clean a small stain, use a damp cloth or towel and rub it over the area of the stain until it disappears. Mix dishwashing liquid with warm water for larger areas and wet the large stain area thoroughly.

Although soap and water remove fresh stains, they are not as effective in removing hardened ink. That is because the ink has adhered to the leather or become embedded within the fibers of the leather.

To remove these stains, use mineral spirits or a leather conditioner. You should first soak up any excess ink using either a damp cloth or sponge and then apply a liquid detergent or conditioner to the stained area and allow it to soak in over time. Soak items of clothing stained with a stain remover containing glycerin before washing them to allow for better penetration of the stain remover into the fibers.


Treating ink stains on leather shoes or other pieces of clothing can be difficult when they do not come out with standard methods. One possible solution is to rub toothpaste onto the stained area, let it sit for at least 30 minutes, and then wipe it away with a cotton ball. Another option is to make your own “ink buster” using ammonia and water in a 1:2 ratio.

If the ink comes out with one of these methods and the leather is still wet, try applying a wet cloth or piece directly to the stain. The ink should take about 15 minutes to absorb into the cloth. Once it does, you can gently rub away any remaining stain by placing a wet cloth into your hand and rubbing gently on your leather item.

PLEASE NOTE: When trying any of the above methods on the ink, please do a small test and see if you are happy with how it is taking out the ink. It is also advised that you don’t use multiple methods together (only using one method at a time).

Brand And Products To Avoid Removing Ink From Leather

WD 40

You might be tempted to use WD 40 as a home remedy for ink stains on your leather furniture and car seats. Don’t fall for it! This common remedy may give you the illusion that the color is being removed, but you’re just adding more dye through the chemical reaction.

And by using this substance, you’re destroying the item’s finish and causing long-term damage. Ditching these dangerous home remedies is a small investment compared to getting professional help for those damaged items.

WD-40 is a water-displacing spray we typically use for lubricating sliding doors and removing squeaky hinges. But WD 40 does not bind to leather, it removes the color and finish from leather and can leave a coating of film that is hard to remove and could cause further damage to your leather.


Avoiding milk when removing ink from leather can save you time and hassle. While the process is fairly straightforward, it will require patience to get all the ink out properly.

The consequences of taking too long to clean your leather are not worth a few extra minutes, so be sure to follow this advice. Milk contains proteins that will break down and thicken with your leather. In even worse cases, milk can also stain your work or ruin its aesthetic appeal, making it harder to remove all the ink already on your surface.

Nail Polish Remover

Nail polish remover has ingredients including acetone, when used on leather, can dry out and harm the fibers of your material. That leaves behind a sticky coating that is nearly impossible to remove without professional cleaning services fully.

Further, acetone causes yellowing and discoloration of dyed leather over time. It also pulls pigment from other materials like cotton, silk, or paper leaving behind whitish blotches or spots of color. If you are in a pinch, rinse your leather with water before using nail polish remover.

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