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How to remove nail polish from my leather sofa

Updated July 26, 2018

A nail polish spill is messy and tough to clean up, but putting off the task will only make the problem worse. Nail polish is essentially paint in a really small bottle with a built-in brush, and like other paint, nail polish will stain any fabric or hard surface. As with all paint spills, nail polish drips and spills should be removed as soon as possible. The long-term effects of leaving nail polish on leather include permanent discolouration and hardening of the leather's finish.

Rub an art gum eraser over the nail polish stain. Do not apply too much pressure as it may cause removal of the protective finish on your leather sofa. Continue to rub until the nail polish stain is gone. This method should only be used on dried nail polish.

Pour a small amount of nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball, and test it on a hidden area of your sofa. Wait a few minutes to see if the remover or alcohol alters the colour of your leather before proceeding. If the colour of your leather fades or bleeds, call a leather professional to treat the nail polish stain.

Blot the nail polish stain with the cotton ball until the stain is removed.

Mix 1 tsp dish detergent with 2 cups warm water. Swish with your hand to create suds. Wet a cloth with the soapy water and wipe the affected area to rinse off the nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol.

Dry with a towel.

Tip

For best results, treat nail polish stains soon after they occur.

Things You'll Need

  • Art gum eraser
  • Non-acetone nail polish remover or rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton balls
  • Dish detergent
  • Warm water
  • Cloths
  • Towel
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About the Author

Jess Jones has been a freelance writer since 2005. She has been a featured contributing writer for "Curve Magazine" and she teaches English composition at a small college in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her Master of Arts in English language and literature in 2002.