Tips for cleaning up paint, crayon and marker messes

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Did your kids use your home as a giant coloring book? Crayon all over the walls, paint on the carpet, magic marker on their clothes. You may be thinking that they have just ruined everything, but lucky for you, I have some great tips on removing crayon, magic marker and different kinds of paint stains from your carpet and walls.

Magic Marker: There are a few different things you can use to attack this “accident”:
Nail polish remover
Baking soda toothpaste
Rubbing alcohol
Hairspray
Anti-bacterial hand gel
First you want to cover the marker stain with the chosen product and allow it to set for several minutes. Now wipe the surface clean and wash the area/garment if possible. Repeat if necessary until the marker is removed.

Acrylic Paint on carpet:
First you want to contain the spill – place paper towels around the paint to keep it from spreading. Use paper towels to blot the spilled paint – NO NOT RUB. Using glycerin on dry paper towels, blot the carpet with the paint spill. Keep blotting until the paint comes up. An alternative to using glycerin is to use nail polish remover or acetone to clean up any residue. Again, blot with paper towels. Next mix a teaspoon of mild detergent and 1 cup of water in a bucket and use a sponge dampened with the mixture to finish clean up. Dry area with a clean dry towel.

Water based paints on carpet:
Soak up as much of the paint as possible with a towel or paper towel. Blot, DO NOT RUB. Pour a small amount of white distilled vinegar onto a clean towel or cloth and dab the stain with the vinegar-soaked cloth. NEVER rub. As you dab you will see the paint lifting onto the cloth and out of the carpet. Continue to dab gently, turn the cloth around to a fresh area every down and then so that it can absorb more paint
Once the paint is gone, Sponge with warm soapy water.

Oil Paint on carpet:
Absorb as much of the paint as possible with a clean towel or cloth
Using acetone or lacquer thinner, absorb the paint (these agents carry a risk of bleaching or discoloring your carpet.) Or, my favorite method Get out your portable handheld steam cleaner. Steam the paint stain and then use tweezers and/or a blade to try and lift the paid after steaming it.

Crayons on wall:
Dip a clean damp rag in some baking soda, and lightly scrub the marks. They should come off with minimal effort.

Crayons on clothing:
Rub the crayon mark with an old toothbrush soaked in undiluted white vinegar before washing them.

Crayons on wallpaper:
Use a piece of a steel wool soap pad to skim the surface by making strokes in one direction instead of scrubbing in a circle. Your wall will be a crayon free in no time.

Hopefully these tips can help you restore your walls and carpet after a creative genius has used them as their canvas. And just remember, at the time of the discovery you may be frustrated with their creativity but take a minute, step back and take in the scene. After all, its not just a mess, it’s a memory.

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