How To Get Rid Of Dried Nail Polish From Carpet

Painting your nails is one of those everyday things that can prove to be therapeutic!

It is a great way to pamper yourself, but this dreamy situation with music and wine can fast turn into a nightmare when you realise that the bottle of nail polish has toppled and spilt all its contents on your pristine rug.

It is relatively easier to get the nail polish off your rug when it is still fresh but there are instances when you don’t even realise that something has spilt.

It could be at one of those girls’ nights or a sleepover when everyone has had a little too much to drink and you wake up the next morning and stare at your carpet in horror!

While most people panic in a situation like this, there is no need for you to be one of those people!

The obvious stain may seem impossible to get out but tons of people have been in this situation and come up with ways to get that dried nail polish out without losing your carpet forever!

Products That Are Helpful

Products For Removing Nail Polish

The best products to use in this situation are the ones that you will find at home!

Look around your shelves and cupboards for any of the following:

  • Non-Acetone Nail Polish Remover: The key phrase here is acetone-free as nail polish removers with acetone can damage and discolour your carpet permanently.
  • Hairspray: One of the most effective products when it comes to dissolving nail polish is hairspray – because of its alcohol content.
  • Hydrogen Peroxide: This may be used on lighter carpets but completely avoided for darker-coloured carpets as it is similar to bleach and can discolour the carpet permanently.
  • Rubbing Alcohol: This works well to break down the nail polish.
  • Window Cleaner: Using a window cleaner has proved to be one of the better ways of getting the nail polish out of your carpet.
  • Carpet Stain Remover – The most obvious choice out of all mentioned, this is great if you have it stocked up in your cupboard.

Step-By-Step Guide

Removing dried up nail polish from the carpet can be a bit of a task but don’t worry, here is all you need to know to get your clean carpet back!

Step 1: Pick At The Nail Polish

Try to use a spoon, a blunt knife or your hands to remove as much of the dried nail polish from the carpet as you can.

This will help reduce the damage and you can just sweep up the flecks when you’re done with this step.

Step 2: Use Warm Water To Wet The Stain

Bowl of Water

Get some lukewarm water and wet the stained portion of your carpet with the help of a sponge or a cloth.

This should make it easier for the product to work on the area.

Step 3: Conduct A Patch Test

This is very important if you want your carpet to look like it used to or there could be major discolouration.

Choose a spot on the carpet that is not really visible and pour a tiny amount of the product you want to use onto it.

Let it be for a couple of minutes to check for any damage. If there is none after two minutes, move on.

Step 4: Use the Product On The Nail Polish Stain

Pick up an old toothbrush or a clean cloth and put some of the chosen cleaning product on it.

Use this to gently rub the dried nail polish. If you do not notice a change, add some product directly on the stain and scrub gently.

Step 5: Use Warm, Soapy Water On The Stained Area

After you see that no more of the nail polish is coming off with the product, take a bowl of lukewarm water with either dishwashing soap, laundry detergent, or carpet cleaner and gently scrub the stained area again.

This should be done till the stain vanishes.

Step 6: Rinse With Water

Cleaning Nail Polish

Get some warm water and a fresh towel or sponge to scrub the stained area till you feel that all of the soap from the carpet is gone.

Blot the carpet with a clean towel to soak up excess water.

Step 7: Dry The Carpet

Time to get rid of the remaining wetness in the carpet.

This means that you need to deploy your fan – if you have one – or let it air dry in a clean place!

The final result will be a clean, dry carpet.

Things To Keep In Mind

There are some basic rules that apply to all types of nail polish stain, irrespective of the method you choose while dealing with it.

Continue reading to know more.

The Early You Act On It, The Better

It will be easier to deal with the stain if you catch it soon after the nail polish spilt on the carpet.

However, there are times when you discover it only after it has dried.

There is no need to panic as this can be addressed, try to remove it while it’s still wet if you have the opportunity.

Test It Out To Avoid Mishaps

Bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide on Carpet

Choose any method of your liking but before you go all in with it, make sure that you check the substance on a hidden area of your rug to check for discoloration.

This is especially important if you are using bleaching agents like hydrogen peroxide.

Don’t Resort To Complicated Methods Or Tools

You are exposing your rug or carpet to further damage if you decide to use a coloured cloth or napkin to get the stain out.

This move may backfire and transfer some of the dye onto the already stained carpet. Therefore, stick to white, clean pieces of cloth.

Avoid Clothing Detergents

There is a reason clothing detergents are marketed as cloth cleaners, which means they (or spot cleaners) are not meant for your carpet.

They may make matters worse by damaging the fibres of your rug or carpet!

Avoid Chlorine Bleach

Chlorine Bleach

This is especially important if you have a wool carpet as this contains alkalis that can cause irreversible damage to your carpet.


Now that you have an arsenal of information to back you up, there is no need to be scared of the stain that you spotted on your carpet earlier in the day!

Pick up the tool of your choice and get down to cleaning!

However, if the task seems daunting, try calling a professional to clean it for you.

Remember, that way you will be spending some extra money!

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