How to Remove Fingernail Polish From Painted Walls

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Things You'll Need

  • Rags

  • Dish soap

  • Scrubbing pad

  • Rubbing alcohol

  • Acetone nail polish remover


If removing the nail polish has taken off some of the paint, lightly sand the area and touch it up with matching paint and a small paintbrush.

Clean nail polish from painted walls carefully so it doesn't spread or damage the walls.

Fingernail polish can spruce up your nails, but it likely doesn't go with the decor when you find it on your painted walls. Whether you accidentally swiped your freshly-painted nails on the wall or your toddler decided to decorate the wall with your bright red polish, removing it must be done carefully to disturb the paint as little as possible.


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Step 1

Wipe the fingernail polish with a rag and warm, soapy water as soon as you spot it. If the polish is still wet, this may be all that's necessary to remove it, particularly on semi-gloss or eggshell finish paint.

Step 2

Moisten a scrubbing pad with rubbing alcohol. Scrub the fingernail polish gently until no more is coming off the wall. Use more alcohol, if necessary. Wipe with a damp rag to remove the alcohol and residue.

Step 3

Dampen a clean rag with acetone nail polish remover if any of the fingernail polish is still there. Wipe over the spot lightly until the polish disappears. Avoid scrubbing too hard as this may damage the paint.

Step 4

Clean the area with a rag and warm, soapy water after all the polish is gone. Dry well with a clean rag.