Patricia said, “How to get lacquer off a leather chair?”
Leather can be a difficult surface to know how to clean, especially when there is something tricky on it like paint. Select a method from the list below to remove the paint, and continue trying other methods if needed until the paint is gone.
Removing the Paint
You Will Need:
- A cloth
- Baby oil or cooking oil
- Leather cleaner
- Non-acetone nail polish remover
- A cotton swab
- Leather conditioner
- Rubbing alcohol
Steps to Remove the Paint:
- Try gently rubbing off the paint with a damp cloth. Some types of paint are water-based, and even if they’re not, this may be enough to soften the paint so that it can be gently scraped off the surface of the leather with a credit card. When the paint is removed, pat the area dry with a towel.¹
- The other main type of paint besides water-based paints are oil-based paints. If the water method didn’t work to remove the paint, try this next. Put cooking oil or baby oil on a cotton swab or cloth, dab the swab on a paper towel to remove the excess oil, then rub the swab on the paint spot until it is gone. Try not to let the oil soak into the leather. Once the paint is gone, wipe the area with a leather cleaner or soapy cloth to remove the oil residue.²
- If the oil didn’t work to remove the paint, try non-acetone nail polish remover. This can be effective for removing many difficult types of paint, but it is important that you test it on a small hidden area of the leather first to look for any adverse reaction. Apply the nail polish remover on a cloth or cotton swab and wring the cloth or dab the swab to remove the excess liquid. If the test went well, rub the spot with the solution until the paint is gone. Wipe the area with a cloth damp with water to remove the nail polish remover residue, then wipe the leather with a leather conditioner.³
- For a more stubborn paint spot, try using rubbing alcohol. Pour a small amount of rubbing alcohol onto a cloth or cotton swab, wring the cloth out so that it’s not dripping, and gently rub the paint with the cloth. Try not to soak the leather with the rubbing alcohol as it can cause the leather to dry out. Once the paint is removed, wipe the area with a cloth damp with water to remove the alcohol residue, then wipe the leather with a leather conditioner.
Additional Tips and Advice
- It is easier to remove wet paint from a surface than dry paint, so always remove paint splatter right away. If you can’t remove the paint splatter right away, lay a wet cloth over it to help keep the paint moist.⁴
- Alcohol can have a drying effect on leather, so it is always best to apply a leather conditioner on an area after alcohol is used.
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