How to Remove Ink From Faux Leather

Faux leather is a popular alternative to traditional leather, as it is vegan-friendly and often less expensive. However, while faux leather is generally stain-resistant, ink can be difficult to remove from the material. Thankfully, there are several methods you can try to get the ink out of faux leather. Keep reading for step-by-step instructions on how to remove ink from faux leather!

How to Remove Ink From Faux Leather

Removing ink from faux leather should be approached delicately, as the paint or dye in ink can potentially bleed if you scrub too hard. However, with the proper removal method, you can help prevent further damage to your faux leather while ensuring that all ink is gone.

The ink contains dyes, which are particles of color. These dyes can bond to faux leather, which means they may not come out without breaking the dye’s bond with the material. However, even if a stain does break its bond with faux leather and come out of the material, there is no way to know how long it will stay gone.

Things You’ll Need

  • Salt And Baby Oil
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Baby Wipes
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Laundry Detergent and Baking Soda
  • White Vinegar
  • Nail Polish Remover
  • Toothpaste

How to Remove Ink From Faux Leather In Details

Step 1: Before You Start

Ensure you have all the supplies needed to remove ink from faux leather. Depending on what you’ll be using to apply the mixture onto the faux leather, you may need an old rag, paper towels, or baby wipes. Also, make sure that before you start working with anything, any other materials are not close by – this means anything made of vinyl should be placed far away from the process. Finally, wipe the leather surface clean with a cloth so as not to spread the ink. If you can, try to use a natural fiber cloth as synthetic fibers might cause additional damage.

Wipe the Leather Surface Clean With a Cloth

Step 2: Using Salt And Baby Oil

Take a bowl and add one teaspoon of baby oil to it. Then, add in 3 tablespoons of salt and mix well. You can use any salt for this process; however, you should avoid using table salt as it might contain iodine which can worsen the damage done to your faux leather surface. Add the mixture slowly until you achieve the right consistency needed when applied to your faux leather material. Too thin and your mix won’t stick; too thick, and the ink will take longer to leave your faux leather good.

Using a rag or paper towel, apply the mixture onto the part of faux leather that has been stained with ink. You can squeeze it out from a toothpaste-like tube or scoop some up from the bowl and then spread it on your cloth before applying it towards the ink stain. Do this slowly so as not to cause any more damage to your faux leather material by spreading around the entire surface of your item. Allow time for drying.

Step 3: Using Rubbing Alcohol

For this step, you will need to make a mixture of equal parts rubbing alcohol and water. Then, depending on how big the area is affected by the stain, add more water or alcohol accordingly. Then, using a brush or any other natural-hair scrubber, start scrubbing off the mixture onto faux leather while still moist and watch as it starts removing stains left behind by ink.

Start Scrubbing Off the Mixture

After you’re done scrubbing the surface with your homemade solution containing rubbing alcohol and water, clean up any remaining residue using an old cloth or cotton ball dipped in hand sanitizer such as Purell. You can also use toothpaste instead of hand sanitizer. This is a crucial step in how to remove ink from faux leather.

Step 4: Baby Wipes

Using baby wipes or any other moist towelette, wipe off the area affected by ink stains in faux leather. Make sure you are wiping from outside, moving towards the center. If there are stubborn stains left behind after you’re done wiping off with a baby wipe, spray some hand sanitizer on top of it – the alcohol content in the sanitizer will work as an additional solvent for removing ink in faux leather surfaces. Wipe again using another clean cloth to make sure no residue containing any traces of ink is left behind.

You Can Check It Out To Take Care of Vegan Leather

Step 5: Using Laundry Detergent And Baking Soda

For this step, you will need a bowl and a rag. In the bowl, add a quarter cup of laundry detergent and a half cup of baking soda. Mix both ingredients until they are thoroughly blended. If you want to use liquid laundry instead of powder, add 1/4 cup of liquid laundry detergent for every three tablespoons of baking soda used in the mixture.

Mix Detergent and Baking Soda

Using your rag, apply the solution on top of the ink stains in faux leather and allow it to sit for about ten minutes or until dried up. Once dried up, scrub off any remaining product from the surface using an old cloth or paper towels until all traces of ink have been removed.

Step 6: Using White Vinegar

Using white vinegar, wipe off any remaining residue after you are done with wiping away ink stains left behind in faux leather surfaces. How much white vinegar you’re going to use here also depends on the size of the fake leather where ink stains have occurred. Ensure that all traces of ink have been removed before you start working with household cleaners because these cleaners might contain chemicals that could further damage your faux leather surface if not correctly applied.

Step 7: Using Nail Polish Remover

Using non-acetone nail polish remover, apply some on a cotton swab or an old toothbrush. Gently rub the affected area while still moist with this nail polish remover until ink stain starts leaving your faux leather goods. Next, wipe away with another cotton swab dipped in hand sanitizer or purell to make sure all remnants of the ink stains have been removed.

Step 8: Using Toothpaste

To remove ink stains from faux leather, you can also use toothpaste. How much toothpaste you will need depends on the size of the stain allowed. Just make sure that it doesn’t contain any whitening ingredients because these might be harmful to your faux leather surface if left unattended. If stubborn spots are still left behind after wiping away with a moist cloth, spray some hand sanitizer on top of it and wipe using another clean cloth until all traces of dry toothpaste appear.

Step 9: Using Hand Sanitizer

Spray hand sanitizer on top of stain-affected areas in faux leather surfaces. How long you will let it sit before wiping off the excess sanitizer depends on how stubborn ink stains are left behind. Next, wipe away extra sanitizer using a cloth or cotton ball dipped in hand sanitizer until all residue is removed from the surface. Finish by cleaning your faux leather with water mixed with dishwashing soap, and then wipe dry using another clean rag for optimal results.

Spray Hand Sanitizer on Top of Stain

Now that you know how to remove ink from faux leather, start working away! With these simple steps, anyone can do it themselves without seeking professional help.

Tips and Warnings


– When cleaning faux leather, avoid using any product with fragrances or alcohol as it may alter the surface finish.

– Do not use a scouring pad, as this can remove the protective coating and damage your faux leather furnishing.

– Be patient and allow longer drying time than you may be used to when working with other fabrics.

– If cleaning fails, or if ink stains are particularly stubborn, take your item to a professional cleaner who will have access to products that go beyond those available to consumers.

– If your faux leather item is older, it may simply be beyond repair.


– More than one of the steps may need to be completed before you can successfully remove ink from faux leather.

– Failure to use the correct cleaning product could damage your faux leather and void any warranty or guarantee.

– Test any product you use to remove ink on an inconspicuous area of the faux leather and allow it to dry before using.

What Is the Best Ink Stain Remover for Faux Leather?

There are many store-bought ink stain removers for faux leather, but the most effective you can make at home is using hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide has been used as a cleaning agent for years and is very gentle on surfaces like faux leather. It will not discolor or damage your sofa, and it effectively removes ink stains from suede and velvet. To use this method, you would want to dampen a clean white cloth with three percent hydrogen peroxide that has been mixed with water and apply until the stain is removed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Takes Ballpoint Ink Out of Leather?

There are a few things that can take ballpoint ink out of leather, but the most common culprit is liquid nitrogen. Ballpoint pens use ink that is in a liquid form and when exposed to extremely cold temperatures (as in liquid nitrogen), the ink will solidify and cause damage to the leather.

Does Vinegar Remove Ink From Leather?

Yes, vinegar can remove ink from leather. Vinegar is a natural acid, and when applied to the surface of leather that has been stained with ink, it will help to break down the ink molecules and remove them from the surface. This process may take a few days or weeks, but eventually the ink will be completely removed. Note that this method is not recommended for heavy stains or if the leather is in need of other repairs or restoration work.

Will Rubbing Alcohol Damage Leather?

The effects of rubbing alcohol on leather depend largely on the type and condition of the leather. In general, however, rubbing alcohol may damage leather if it is applied in a concentrated form or if it is left on the surface for a long period of time.

If you are concerned about the potential damage that rubbing alcohol may cause to your leather goods, it is best to test a small amount of alcohol on a small area of the leather first to see how it behaves. If you are still worried about the potential consequences, it may be best to avoid using rubbing alcohol altogether and instead opt for another cleaner or sealant that is more likely to be safe for leather.

Can Sanitizer Remove Ink?

The effects of sanitizer on ink depend largely on the particular sanitizer and the type of ink being used. Some sanitizers may be effective at removing ink, while others may not have any effect at all. It is best to test a small amount of sanitizer on a small area of the ink to see if it is effective before using larger quantities on the entire surface.


Faux Leather is used very often and has become popular because it looks like genuine leather, but it’s cheaper and easier to care for. Ink removal can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be with the right tools and know-how. Hopefully, this article on how to remove ink from faux leather has given you the information you need to get started on eliminating ink from faux leather. If you follow the steps outlined in this article, you should have no problem removing ink from faux leather! Good luck and happy refinishing!

You may also read – How to remove stains from faux leather

Photo of author

Matt Clark

Hi, this is Matt, and I am a leathercraft hobbyist. I have been working with leather for quite a bit of time. When I was a teenager, my father taught me the basics of leathercraft. Along the way I have learned a lot of things about leather work leather items, restoring leather, and creating leather accessories. I started this blog to share my knowledge of leatherworking with others and help people learn about this amazing craft. I also wanted to create a community of like-minded people who could share ideas and support each other in their leatherworking journey.

Leave a Comment