How to Remove Wood Stain From Clothing

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Things You'll Need

  • White paper towels

  • Acetone

  • Rags

  • Mineral spirits


Acetone is also known as nail polish remover.

Test a hidden area of the fabric for colorfastness and fabric damage before using acetone on the stain.


Rinse the rag and paper towels thoroughly with plain water after use to avoid combustion.

Remove wood stain from fabrics before they set.

Wood workers and artisans commonly use wood stains to create new colors on wood projects. Wood stains can splash or spill onto their clothing, leaving behind a stain and ruining the garments. Wood stains are available in oil or water-based formulas. Once the wood stain is dry, removing it is virtually impossible. Treating and removing the spot or spill before it dries is when you have the best chance for complete removal.


Water-Based Stain

Step 1

Lay down a thick layer of white paper towels. Place the stained clothing on top of the paper towels, with the stain face down on the paper towels.

Step 2

Pour a capful of acetone onto the stain. Dip a clean, white rag into the acetone.

Step 3

Blot the stain with the acetone-soaked rag. Press the stain into the paper towels. Move the stained fabric around the surface of the paper towels to clean areas after each blotting. Rub the stain beginning at the outer edges and working your way toward the center. Continue to blot and rub the clothing until the stain disappears.


Step 4

Flush the fabric thoroughly with plain water and wash with laundry soap as soon as possible.

Oil-Based Stain

Step 1

Place a thick layer of white paper towels on a work surface. Lay the stained fabric facing down on the paper towels.

Step 2

Dip a clean, white rag into mineral spirits.

Step 3

Blot the stain, beginning at the outer edge of the stain. Push the stain into the paper towels to transfer the wood stain from the fabric onto the paper towels. Move the stained fabric from place to place on the paper towel surfaces. Continue to dip the rag into mineral spirits and blot the stain until it is removed.

Step 4

Rinse the fabric with plain water and wash as usual.


Sal Marco

Sal Marco began writing professionally in 2009. He has written many online home improvement articles based on his more than 20 years of experience in the home improvement and building industries. He has worked as both part of a team and as a site supervisor. Marco has a Bachelor of Science in management science from Kean University.