Skip to content

How to Remove Acrylic Paint from Fabrics, Woods, Metals, and Glass?

Acrylic paint is a potential water-based fast-drying paint. It has a pigment that dissolves with the solution. When it dries, it becomes water-soluble, and it is difficult to wash from surfaces. 

As a result, you’ll need a cleaner that will break down the acrylic resin to clear acrylic paint on any kind of surface. You should invest in a cleaner based on what kind of surface they will be used on. In this article, we will discuss the scenarios for removing acrylic paint from different surfaces. 

Use Cleaners

  • Alcohol

This alcohol is also known as isopropyl alcohol. It is an effective solution to remove drying acrylic paint from non-porous materials such as wood, metals, fabric, and clothing treated with elbow grease. When the stained object is dipped in rubbing alcohol and then washed with an old toothbrush, the acrylic paint dissolves.

  • Ammonia Solution

Only non-porous surfaces help remove both semi-dry and dry acrylic paint. It does not help scrape plastic paint stains from fabric fabrics. Since it is used to raise the PH in acrylic emulsions, it is more efficient at removing color. It blackens aluminum and is not suitable for use on brass.

  • Lacquer Thinner

This is a powerful solution that can be used to remove acrylic paint from glass and aluminum. Lacquer thinner isn’t recommended as it contains toxic chemicals like methanol and toluene. Toluene is harmful to human health and should not be used.

  • Acetone

Acetone should be used on the non-porous surface like glass and metal, where scrubbing is quite tricky. You should never use it on plastic or synthetic materials, unlike alcohol. Due to the strong solvent it contains. It’s toxic, like lacquer thinner and flammable.

  • Denature Alcohol

It is made up of ethyl and methyl and is heavier than rubbing alcohol. On plastic surfaces, this is more efficient. Methanol, which is toxic and flammable, is also present. It has a pale blue flame that is difficult to watch below sunlight. We recommend you use it in an area of fire suppression and adequate ventilation.

Removing Acrylic Paints from Fabrics with Rubbing Alcohol

Step 1: Moisten the Part Stained by Acrylic Paint with Rubbing Alcohol

First, test the cleaner (rubbing alcohol) on an invisible section of your cloth to see if it can extract any ink. To dissolve the ink, soak the garment’s dyed part in rubbing alcohol for 10 to 15 minutes after ensuring that it cannot extract the pigment. Make sure the cloth is moistened so that the liquid can penetrate the fibers.

Step 2: Remove the Paint Stain Through Scrubbing

Scrub the paint clean with a butter knife or an old toothbrush after soaking for 10 to 15 minutes. Ensure that the scrubbing is performed and with caution. To avoid damaging the cloth by not spreading the paint to other parts of the clothing.

Step 3: Repeat the Procedure

The paint will not be removed immediately, but it will be removed. Repeat the technique until the paint stain is removed from the materials.

Step 4: Wash the Material and Dry It

The products would need to be washed after steps 1 to 3 have been completed, and the color has been cleaned. To get rid of the odor of the alcohol, wash it with daily laundry detergent.

Remove Acrylic Paints from Surface-Like Fabrics, Woods, Metals, And Glass

Step 1: Scrape Off the Removable Paint

Acrylic paint is easier to remove from non-porous surfaces than oil-based paints. Since it is coated with water, a scraper can be used to do this work like a knife, butter knife, sandpaper, etc. This is done to remove color that may be applied when scraping it from a non-porous substrate.

Step 2: Soak the Stained Area with Alcohol

Use a cloth that has already been washed in the solvent. Rub the alcohol to the affected area for 1 to 3 hours. As you did to strip acrylic paint from porous surfaces.

Step 3: Scrub the Area with Soapy Water

Once you soak the material in alcohol, wash it with a soapy water solution. This should get rid of all the color stains on the non-porous clothing material.

Step 4: Repeat the Steps If Required

If there are still paint traces after steps 1 to 3, have been completed. Repeat the procedure until all of the paint stains have been eliminated.

Aspects to Consider When Buying Acrylic Paint Removers for Fabrics, Woods, And Metals


Before we start considering different household chemicals used to remove acrylic paint, it’s important to say a few things about health and safety options. The majority of the liquid chemicals mentioned here are hazardous to both health and property.

Fire Risk

The most severe threat is flammability. 4 to 5 solutions in this article are flammable. Alcohols and solvents can never be used near naked fires. As well as the energized heating elements. Unless the liquid is intended for use in a fire hazard zone. It should not use flammable liquids near operating electric motors.

The majority of electric motors produce sparks. The most flammable vapors such as acetone and lacquer thinner are heavier as compared to air. Thus, it can travel long distances to an ignition point.

Don’t Inhale or Ingest

Solvents can only be used in well-ventilated spaces. Excessive inhalation or ingestion can be hazardous. Methanol can be present in both denatured alcohol and lacquer thinner. It has the potential to cause blindness and sometimes even death!

Don’t Touch

Do not allow the solvent to contact your skin, as the liquids can penetrate and soak into your body. Ammonia solution emits toxic vapors, which can cause skin irritation. To reduce the chance of unintended exposure, carry gloves and safety glasses.

Alternate Solutions If Alcohol Is Not Available 

Ammonia Solutions

Semi-dry and dry acrylic paint can be removed from non-porous materials. Such as aluminum, glass, and plastics with good old cheap household ammonia. That’s because ammonia is used to raise the pH of acrylic emulsions to preserve them. The sudsy type could be the better option because it contains a detergent that holds the loosened particles suspended during rinsing.

Be cautious because the fumes can be potent. Cleaning with ammonia can be better done outside or in a fume hood or other fume-extraction kit. The gases can also induce an allergic reaction, but this is uncommon.


Acetone is a more robust alternative. This strong solvent, unlike alcohol, cannot be used on plastics or synthetic materials. It’s only about going into difficult-to-reach places where scrubbing isn’t an option. Surfaces that are acetone-safe are also non-porous, such as glass and metal. It is flammable but has low toxicity.

Acetone is sold in metal tins at most hardware stores, paint stores, and home improvement centers. With fiberglass resins, acetone is a natural solvent. When my airbrush nozzle tips get clogged with paint, I soak them in acetone.


Lacquer thinner is a more powerful solvent mix that can strip acrylics from glass and aluminum. Unfortunately, lacquer thinner also incorporates toxic toluene and methanol. Toluene may have long-term health consequences.

Lacquer thinner can only be used in a dry setting. Toluene is substituted in new “green” lacquer thinner formulations with a combination of ethyl acetate, a low-toxicity solvent with a pleasing, fruity odor.


When acrylic paints stain porous and non-porous materials like fabrics, metals, and woods, any of the steps mentioned above should be followed. There’s no reason to panic; the stain will be completely cleared. The methods for removing acrylic paint mentioned above are inexpensive. So why not give them a try and never think about the acrylic stain again?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *