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How to remove nail polish from carpet

Spilt nail polish doesn't have to ruin your carpet! If you act fast & use these easy tips on removing nail polish from carpet you can banish the stain for good!


Red nail varnish bottle on a carpet with nail polish spilled on the carpet fibres
Nail polish on the carpet needs to be tackled head on as quickly as possible, otherwise it could further seep into your carpet fibres, making it even trickier to remove.

Key steps:

  • Try to tackle nail polish stains as soon as possible
  • Start by removing as much nail polish residue as possible by dabbing or chipping
  • Use nail polish remover with caution to dissolve and remove nail polish

Red nail polish looks great on your fingernails, but it’s not such an amazing look when it’s spilled all over your carpet. However, as we know only too well, accidents do happen – so you need to be ready to act fast.Fortunately, getting nail polish out of carpet fibres can be easy when you know how. Follow this simple seven-step guide to remove polish and leave carpets soft and clean underfoot.

How to Remove Nail Polish from Carpet Fibres in 7 Steps

Nail polish is tricky to remove, so try these steps to deal with nail polish on your carpet.

Remember: always read the directions on any product labels, and to test any new stain remover on a small, inconspicuous area before attempting to remove nail polish from a carpet. You may also wish to consult your carpet’s manufacturer for further guidance.

  1. Start by blotting the stain with an old tea towel to remove all wet polish residue – be gentle to avoid spreading the stain
  2. Use a blunt metal implement – such as the end of a spoon – to scrape all dried polish from the surface of the carpet, while being careful not to rub the stain deeper into the pile or damage the carpet fibres
  3. Dip the end of a white cotton cloth in acetone nail polish remover, then blot the stain again to remove as much polish as possible. Caution: when removing nail varnish from carpets, use acetone nail polish remover sparingly – too much could damage the carpet backing (particularly if it’s made from latex), as well as corroding the pile itself. Remember to ventilate the area when using this product, and consider wearing eye protection for safety
  4. Press a tea towel onto the area of the stain to soak up the residue
  5. Next, fill a spray bottle with water, adding one tablespoon of bleach-free detergent
  6. Wash out your spray bottle and refill with water. Spray the stained portion of your carpet, dampening the whole area
  7. Finally, soak up the excess water by pressing a clean dry tea towel over the wet area. Avoid paper towels, which can create a mulch-like mess

By following these steps, you should see an improvement in your carpet. If the stain is persistent, consider asking a professional for advice.

Tip: If some nail polish ended up on your clothes too, find out how to remove it here.


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Originally published