How to get permanent marker off a whiteboard

Read on to find out our top methods for how to get permanent marker off a whiteboard with ease.


Close up of a person cleaning permanent marker off a whiteboard

Key steps

  • Draw over marks with dry erase markers
  • Wipe away while damp.
  • Rub rubbing alcohol into the marks with a soft cloth.
  • Alternatively, try a magic eraser or even nail polish remover.
  • Avoid abrasive cleaners which may damage the finish.
  • Use baby oil to soften compromised whiteboard surfaces.

Anyone who owns or uses a whiteboard will know that permanent markers and sharpies look and feel deceptively similar to dry wipe pens… while producing very different results. If you’ve just realised you can't just swipe away the permanent marks you've just made, don’t panic: our guide will show you how to get permanent marker off a whiteboard with ease. Plus, if it’s not just on the whiteboard but also other surfaces, click here to find out how to remove permanent marker from around your home.

Wipe dry-erase marks away immediately after use, and make sure you keep quality cleaners like Cif Cream around for regular whiteboard cleaning.

How to clean a whiteboard: Important dos and don’ts

Before we show you how to remove permanent marker from whiteboard, there are some other helpful tips and tricks below:

  • DO try baby oil. Baby oil isn’t just for super smooth skin. Rubbing it with a cloth on the surface of your whiteboard can help to shift stubborn marks.
  • DON’T use abrasive cleaners. These can damage the whiteboard’s finish, and compromise the surface – leading to future staining with dry-wipe pens.
  • DO try other methods if. our two favourites below aren’t working for you. You could try out a magic eraser or nail polish remover to remove the ink.
  • DON’T FORGET to keep your whiteboard clean. Always wipe it down after use and clean using a good quality all-purpose cleaner such as Cif at least once a month.
  • DO make sure you keep cleaning products out of reach of children, especially if the whiteboard is in a school or a children’s playroom.

How to get permanent marker off whiteboard: Two simple removal methods

If you’re trying to figure out how to remove permanent marker from a whiteboard, we have two quick and simple methods to help you out. With our step-by-step guides, you can learn effective ways to remove permanent marker from whiteboard with ease.

Method 1: How to clean a whiteboard with dry erasers

It may seem counterintuitive, but fighting marker with marker is often very effective.

You will need: Dry erase markers and a whiteboard eraser

  1. Draw over the marks you’ve made in permanent marker with a dry erase marker.
  2. Colour a solid block which should completely cover all the permanent marks.
  3. While the ink is still damp, use a dry erase eraser to wipe the board clean.
  4. Repeat steps 2-4 until all the permanent marker marks have been fully removed.

Method 2: How to clean a whiteboard with rubbing alcohol

You will need: Rubbing alcohol or hand sanitiser and two soft, clean cloths

  1. Using your rubbing alcohol or hand sanitiser, get your clean, soft cloth damp. Make sure it is not soaking as you don’t want it to drip everywhere.
  2. Use your damp cloth to gently rub away the permanent marker stain.
  3. Using a clean, dry soft cloth; dry the area.
  4. If the ink stain is stubborn, repeat steps 1-3 until it is completely removed.

Now you have some quick and easy steps to follow to remove permanent marker from a whiteboard, you can keep it clean without fear of stains.

Originally published