How to get gel ink out of my clothes

Updated March 29, 2017

Gel ink is particularly hard to remove from fabrics because it is a pigmented ink that is designed to be permanent. Gel ink pens come in a large assortment of colours and are very popular among school-age kids. Since accidents do happen, you will need to know a couple of methods for removing gel ink from your kid's clothing or any other fabric that it may come in contact with.

Mix 1 tsp of regular household ammonia into 1 gallon of water. Add 1/4 cup of any washing powder that has a protein base, such as Arm & Hammer, Cheer or Era.

Use an old toothbrush to scrub the mixture into the gel ink stain on your clothes. Scrub in a circular motion for the best results. Keep scrubbing until you begin to see the stain breaking up.

Rinse the mixture off of the fabric with warm water. Wash the garment as you normally would in the washing machine.

Mix 1 cup of rubbing alcohol with 1 cup of vinegar. Take a clean, white cloth and dip it into the mixture. Wet the stain with the mixture on the white cloth. Allow the mixture to sit for at least five minutes.

Pour a small amount of table salt onto the stain over the mixture. Let the mixture sit for at least another five minutes and then scrub it off with an old toothbrush.

Blot the stain with a clean cloth that has been dampened with hot water. Keep blotting until you see the stain begin to disappear. Add a drop of washing powder to the stain if it will not lift.

Rinse the garment with lukewarm water and allow it to air-dry. Wash in the washing machine as you normally would.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 tsp of household ammonia
  • Clean white cloths
  • Toothbrush
  • 1/4 cup of washing powder
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 cup rubbing alcohol
  • Salt
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About the Author

Jennifer Brister a freelance writer located in Northeast Louisiana. She has enjoyed careers as an educator, a nuclear lab technician and a massage therapist. Her writing can be found in several publications, including "The Circle," "Carbon Cotton Magazine" and "Fashion Advantage Magazine." She has been employed as a professional freelance writer for three years.