Last Updated on March 12, 2023
If you’ve ever had a tattoo, you know that the ink doesn’t just disappear when the needle comes out. In fact, it’s pretty much impossible to get rid of all the ink, no matter how hard you try.
If you’re not careful, you could end up with your new tattoo on your carpet. But don’t worry, there is a way to get rid of those pesky ink stains. Follow these simple steps on how to get tattoo ink out of carpet, and you will have it looking new in no time.
What is Tattoo Ink Made of?
The ink used for tattoos is made of a color pigment and a carrier solution. The most common pigment is carbon black, but sometimes other pigments are used, such as titanium dioxide or iron oxide. The carrier solution can be water, alcohol, or petroleum-derived oil, depending on the manufacturer’s preference.
What to Do If Tattoo Ink Gets on Your Carpet?
Tattoo ink can be super tough to get out of your carpet, but there are some things you can do. If it’s fresh, try sponging the area with soap and cold water, followed by applying hydrogen peroxide. This should remove most color pigments, if not all of them, but know that it will take time for the ink to dissipate.
What Should I Use to Clean It Up?
Make a solution of equal parts water and ammonia. Sponge the area with the solution, not rubbing it in too hard or scrubbing at the stain. This should remove a majority, if not all, the color from the tattoo ink.
A Permanent Solution on How to Get Tattoo Ink Out of Carpet
The best way to keep tattoo ink out of the carpet is to make sure it doesn’t get there. Be extra careful when removing your clothing, taking off gloves, washing your hands, and being aware of where you are putting things. There are thirteen different ways that we will discuss in our next article on how to remove that tattoo.
Prepare Your Cleaning Supplies
To clean a tattoo ink stain from your carpet, you will need the following supplies:
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Nail polish remover with acetone as an ingredient (optional)
- Gloves that protect your hands from getting stained by cleaning products or being irritated by them. You can also use a spoon or butter knife wrapped in a rag instead of wearing gloves.
Water and Soap, Then Hydrogen Peroxide
If the tattoo stain is fresh and still wet, begin by blotting up whatever liquid remains on the carpet. Next, mix 1/4 cup of a gentle soap such as dishwashing liquid into a pint of warm water. Sponge this mixture onto the ink spot being careful to only apply the cleaning solution to the stain and not the surrounding area. Allow it to soak for about 15 minutes, and then blot away excess moisture with a cloth or towel.
If you notice that your fresh ink has set in, skip straight to applying an ammonia-based cleaner directly on the carpet around the tattoo. Mix 1 tablespoon of household ammonia with 2 cups of warm water until thoroughly combined, and then sponges the mixture onto the stained area with a clean cloth or paper towel.
Wait about ten minutes before blotting up excess moisture. If possible, place something absorbent underneath your work areas, such as old newspapers or paper towels, since some ammonia may seep through your sponge during this process.
If your ink stain is very difficult to remove, you can use a nail polish remover that contains acetone. It’s important to note that this type of product should only be used as a last resort since high concentrations of acetone are flammable, and the fumes may irritate skin or eyes.
Use it sparingly, following all label instructions carefully. Apply just enough of the acetone-based cleaner to cover the affected area, blotting after about 15 minutes until excess moisture has cleared.
Blot Up Excess Moisture
After you have applied an ammonia-based solution, hydrogen peroxide, or nail polish remover, wipe up any residual moisture on your carpet with paper or cloths to avoid leaving behind any excess liquid. Do not use a dry cloth, as you will only grind the ink residue into your carpet fibers and make it harder to clean up later on.
Neutralize the Stain
Remove any ammonia or hydrogen peroxide residue on your carpet by blotting lukewarm water on it. Do not use hot water as this can set the ink into your carpet fibers. Once you’ve blotted up excess moisture again, leave the area open to air dry for several hours. Make sure that no one steps on the wet area until it’s completely clean and dry.
Dry Cleaner If Necessary
If there are leftover ink stains after these home remedies have been applied, you can take them to a professional cleaner for cleaning services provided by their high-tech equipment. Not only will they be able to get rid of those stubborn remnants, but they may also prevent future stains from setting as well.
Vacuum the Area
Vacuum your carpet thoroughly before you affix any furniture or tape down rugs. This will remove loose particles of ink and other debris that could cause future staining issues.
Be Cautious for Several Months
Now that you know how to remove tattoo stain from carpets, take precautions for avoiding similar issues in your home until the ink has completely dried up and turned into a permanent part of your floor covering’s fibers.
Place nothing on top of the stained area without first putting something like towels underneath so as not to damage it further. Use an old coat hanger or hanging shoe rack instead to keep items off the ground while allowing airflow.
Whenever you plan to remove the carpet, do so during the winter or very early spring when the ground is still cold. This will slow dry times and allow for easier tattoo stain removal once it has pulled your rug up.
For wet removal methods, avoid using hot water when cleaning under running faucets which may cause ink stains to set into fibers even further. Instead, fill a bucket with cool water and use a sponge to wipe away stain remnants.
Make Use of Bleach
If you do not have ammonia or hydrogen peroxide on hand, there is still one last solution left that will work in a pinch. Mix two teaspoons of dishwashing liquid with about five tablespoons of bleach into one cup of lukewarm water.
Dip your sponge into the cleaning mixture and blot it onto the affected area just like you would with any other cleaner. This concoction does not work as well as the other solutions on its own, but it’s better than nothing in an emergency or if you’re out of options.
Add baking soda to lukewarm water and apply the paste to the stained area of your carpet. Leave it for about half an hour, then clean with a wet cloth or vacuum cleaner after that time has passed.
If needed, repeat once more until you are satisfied so. Bleach is also effective against ink stains but if your pets or kids are around, avoid using it as it’s hazardous to their health.
Make Use of Vinegar
For ink stain removal from your carpet, you can make use of vinegar. Because of its acidic nature, it is very effective in getting rid of tattoos with no hassle.
First, scrub the stained area with a brush and soap solution, then apply vinegar onto the affected area and let it dry for half an hour before washing away with lukewarm water.
To remove permanent ink stains from carpets, pour white distilled vinegar over a small section of carpet at a time and allow several minutes for it to penetrate through the discolored fibers before blotting up excess liquid with paper towels or cloths.
Repeat this process until all visible ink residues have been removed completely. To prevent future tattoo stains on your rug, avoid placing objects on top of the stained area until it has dried completely.
Vacuum regularly and use rubber-backed mats or throw rugs to keep your carpet safe from permanent ink stains in the future.
Carbonated beverages are another method you can use to remove tattoos from your carpet. Fill a spray bottle with seltzer water, then spray the affected area and let it sit for about an hour before attempting to wipe up any residual ink stains. Repeat as necessary until all mess is gone completely.
How Long It Will Take to Remove the Ink Stains From the Carpet?
It depends on several factors, including the type and size of the rug and the depth to which the stains have penetrated into the rug.
Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can also help to speed up drying time so keep that in mind as you work your way through removing tattoo ink from carpets.
Ink Stain Prevention Tips
There are several steps you can take to prevent ink stains from taking hold in the first place as well as what to do after it has happened.
Protect your carpets by placing rubber-backed mats in high-traffic areas or placing throw rugs over stained spots. You can even try using double-sided tape or gluing down loose edges to prevent your rug from moving around and preshrinking all the fibers in the carpet.
Use rugs that are made of natural fibers. Wool is great for absorbing liquid, while cotton is quick to dry the area. If the stain has dried on your carpet, it might be difficult to obliterate it so take extra precaution.
Avoid placing furniture over stained areas until the rug has been treated and fully dried.
If you’re trying to remove a stain from a white carpet using the solution mentioned in this article, it’s best to test the solution on a small, discrete area first in order to see if there is any discoloration or damage before applying it over large portions of your rug.
So, if you’re ever faced with a situation where the ink has stained your carpet, don’t worry there are plenty of solutions out there that will get the job done. Usually, all that is needed is to follow the guideline outlined here, which is as easy as reading an article. And if you take some preventative steps to avoid future stains, your carpets should stay looking good for years to come.