If there’s ever a rating of how nasty a stain is, an ink stain would rank among the top three.

Ink stains, especially permanent ink, are pretty hard to remove completely. They require using the right tools and a lot of patience.

Luckily, there are different ways to tackle an ink stain, depending on the ink that fell on your carpet. Ink could be either water-based or permanent. Each type requires different solutions to break it down and remove its stains.

But before our expert carpet cleaners start discussing how to remove an ink stain from a carpet, there are a few ground rules about handling ink stains.

Rule 1: Never Scrub a Wet Stain

When cleaning an ink stain, you’ll need to soak it with a solution to clean it up.

Once the stain is wet, you should never scrub it with a towel. Otherwise, you’ll spread the ink to clean areas, and your stain will grow bigger.

Instead, dab the towel over the stain until everything transfers from the carpet onto your clean, dry cloth. The key is to be patient, remain persistent, and apply enough force with every dab.

Rule 2: If You Must Scrub, Use a Toothbrush

If your carpet is thick and the stain has seeped into its fibres, you could use an old toothbrush to scrub it carefully to push the solution deeper.

Remember: try to keep your motion as limited as possible while scrubbing.

Also, if you revert to scrubbing with a toothbrush, always scrub from the outer corners towards the middle of the stain.

Rule 3: Act Fast

Ink stains are so much easier to clean when they’re still fresh.

That’s because once the ink settles in, especially permanent ink, it becomes difficult to remove completely. So it’s best to clean up an ink stain as soon as possible.

6 Methods to Clean an Ink Stain on a Carpet

Now that we’ve covered the basics let’s get to work!

After researching and experimenting with different detergents and solutions, I’ve got it down to these 6 solutions for your ink stain situation.

Method 1: Use Rubbing Alcohol

This method is a staple in almost every household. Many people opt to use rubbing alcohol directly to remove an ink stain.

You can grab a sponge and saturate it with a tablespoon or two of rubbing alcohol. If you don’t have rubbing alcohol on hand, isopropyl alcohol would work just as fine.

Blot your ink stain gently with the alcohol-saturated sponge until the link lifts and the stain fades.

If the ink stain is stubborn, you could try denatured alcohol. However, it might leave some discolouration on your carpet, so test it out first on a small area.

When you’re done, rinse your carpet with water and blot it dry.

Method 2: Apply Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide works wonders on old, dried-up ink stains.

Take a clean cotton towel or a cotton pad — depending on the size of the stain — and pour some hydrogen peroxide on it. Blot the stain well until it lifts all the ink from your carpet.

After removing the ink, wash out the hydrogen peroxide and let it air-dry overnight before covering it with furniture.

The only downside to using hydrogen peroxide is that it might lift the pigment of your carpet.

So, before treating any large stains, test the solution on a small, non-apparent part of your carpet to see how it reacts.

Method 3: Use Dish Soap

If the ink on your carpet was water-based, your good old dish soap would be enough to clean it.

Mix equal parts of soap and water and soak the mixture with a sponge or a clean cloth.

Start patting your stain with the soapy sponge until you remove all the ink. Wash out the remaining soap and pat your carpet dry with paper towels.

Using shampoo or any laundry detergent instead of dish soap will also work.

Method 4: Apply Shaving Cream

For permanent ink, try spraying a decent amount of shaving cream over the stain. Then, grab a damp cloth and press the cream between the carpet’s fibres.

Apply shaving cream and dab it into the carpet until the stain disappears.

The cream’s emulsifiers help break down the stain and lift the ink without affecting the carpet’s pigment.

After cleaning the stain, wipe the excess cream and dry the carpet with a clean cloth or paper towel.

Method 5: Mix Cornstarch with Milk

This mixture works magic with stubborn, permanent ink.

Mix 2-3 tablespoons of cornstarch with a few drops of milk to create a thick paste. Spread the paste over the entire stain and let it sit for a few hours.

Grab an old toothbrush and gently scrub the cornstarch off the carpet. The ink will flake off the carpet with the cornstarch mixture, leaving the treated spot ink-free.

Vacuum the fly-away flakes to remove any cornstarch residue off your carpet.

Method 6: Use Hair Spray

If the ink stain is still fresh, lift it with a paper towel and alcohol-based hair spray as a quick fix.

Lay the paper towel over the stain and drench it with hairspray. Leave it for a few minutes, and you’ll notice that the ink is transferring from the carpet to the paper towel.

Throw away the paper towel and blot the area with a wet towel to remove the hairspray residue.

In Conclusion

Ink stains can be tough to clean, but not impossible. The secret to cleaning an ink stain from your carpet is knowing how to tackle each type of ink.  Once you know what to use to treat water-based ink and what goes well with permanent ink, you’ll never dread an ink stain again!