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Ink Stain Removal

Written and Created by PaperCraftCentral Susan

Ink stain removal from skin can be a problem unless you have some handy tips in mind.

"You haven't truly scrapped till you have ink up to your elbows"
~PaperCraftCentral Susan

ink stain removal tips

Have you ever wondered if there is a handy hint for ink stain removal from your skin?

I wondered that very thing until I was given just such a hint by a friend who attended a Papercraft retreat with me. I'd love to pass it on to you. Like many things in life, the solution is really quite simple, once you know how.

Here's what happened to me: I had just been making cards and had absent mindedly pushed my red ink pad to the left, something I don't usually do. Normally I leave my ink pads in front of me. I must have been quite distracted by having fun this time because I didn't stick to my normal habits of the craft desk.

The next thing I knew, I was leaning on my left elbow, admiring my work (well, seeing if it needed anything else added to it, really) and you can probably guess what I discovered next.

..I had made a stamp out of my elbow..

There was a huge patch of red ink staining my elbow as I had firmly pressed it right into the middle of the stamp pad! And boy, did it make a spectacular mess on my skin.

The colour red is one of the more difficult colours to remove from skin too.

What Doesn't Work:

Naturally I thought I had best do something for ink stain removal before I got it on my paper craft projects or make my friends think I was bleeding to death from paper cuts or something, so off I went to the bathroom to scrub it with soap.

I scrubbed it two or three times, and while it faded, the ink wouldn't really shift from my skin. No more ink was coming off on the paper towels I was using to dry my arm though, so at that point I gave up and returned to the craft room. I was wasting valuable paper crafting time, and now my projects would be safe from the impromptu elbow stamp, after all.

I didn't think to ask if anyone there knew a secret ink stain removal trick, but all was not lost...

The Ink Stain Removal Secret:

When I returned, my friend noticed right away that my elbow was still quite red. She must have taken pity on me because after a little ribbing, the next thing she did was to lean over and whisper this secret to me:

"Next time use shampoo!"

ink stain removal

After I finished laughing with her, I returned to the bathroom and tried out my friend's remedy. It worked right away! (Thank you, Sue!)

Of course I had to re-enact this little scene for you today so I could take some photos. That explains why my RIGHT elbow has been inked up instead of my left. I didn't notice that till I showed this page to my husband tonight. He he. I didn't take photos at the time of the original elbow-stamp-making-episode.

The shampoo remedy worked, even in the re-enactment! All it took was a couple of good scrubs with a bit of shampoo and a washer to get the ink off my skin. (I assure you, my left elbow is just as clean. Ha!)

Of course you would never treat real rubber stamps with shampoo. I wrote some rubber stamping tips to help you with cleaning them.

So the next time you have the need for an ink stain removal remedy for your skin, break out your shampoo. It just might save your elbows from becoming full time stamps!

NOTE: For really heavy ink stains under your nails and in your cuticles, it might help to shampoo your hair. Using your hands for this task exposes them to the shampoo and conditioner for a longer period and seems to get into the inky spots a lot more efficiently, without causing your hair to change colour in any way. ☺

Ink stain removal tips

What Else Removes Ink From Skin?

I discovered there were a few more things you can use to clean ink from skin:

  • Carry hand sanitiser in your tool bag and use it while you are on the go and have no shampoo with you. Wipe it off with a paper towel.
  • If you forget the hand sanitiser and the shampoo, try stamp cleaning solution. This works well when cleaning ink from your stamping blocks as well. If you have stained your hands with Stazon ink, try the Stazon Remover solution.
  • If you have nail polish remover handy, it can also help with getting ink off your skin and nails, but I would find this a little harsh on my own skin. Some people use a small nail brush to remove ink from their cuticles and nails.
  • You can go for heavier cleaners such as rubbing alcohol if you have a particularly strong stain.
  • I have heard of people using adhesive removers such as Goo Gone but do check with the bottle first to make sure it is safe to use on your skin.
  • Another idea is to use an oil product such as baby oil or vegetable oil. Oil is great for removing glue from your skin as well.
  • There are a couple more ink stain cleaning ideas here from a fellow Stampin' Up! Demonstrator

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