How to Get Chalk Paint Out of Clothes

Chalk paint is praised for the lovely soft matte finish that it creates. It’s also incredibly easy to apply, making it great for beginners. 

However, like with any paint job, chalk paint can be messy too. And accidents like getting paint on clothes or carpets are common. Fortunately, chalk paint can be removed from most types of fabric with the right cleaning supplies and a bit of elbow grease. 

And in this post, we’ll tell you how to get chalk paint out of clothes with simple household supplies. 


To get wet chalk paint out of clothes, rinse the clothing under warm water with a bit of detergent. For dried stains, it is best to use a vinegar solution, baking soda, salt with lemon juice, or rubbing alcohol. For extremely stubborn stains, use paint thinners or turpentines with caution.

Does chalk paint come out of clothes?

Chalk paint comes out of clothes, or any fabric, even when it has already dried. However, it takes more time and effort to completely remove the dried chalk paint stain on your carpet or clothes.

If the chalk paint is still wet, scoop out as much of the paint as possible with a paper towel or cloth before it dries. Then rinse out the clothing by hand under warm water with a bit of detergent. 

If you can still see the paint stain on your clothes after rinsing them, or if the paint has already dried in your clothes, you’ll need to take extra measures to remove the stain (see below). 

How to remove chalk paint from clothes

Try using non-toxic solutions to remove your stain first. These solutions are less likely to damage your clothes than relatively harsher treatments. 

Non-toxic solutions such as the ones below are household supplies that are safe to use and generally don’t cause any irritation to the eyes, nose, and skin. They tend to work best on stains that haven’t fully dried yet. 

Note that the solutions below may not work on clothes that have already been washed and put in the dryer. Applying heat on stained clothes sets the pigment of the paint into the clothing fibers. Hence, these stains are often impossible to remove by then. That said, don’t put chalk-paint-stained clothes in the drier until the stain has been completely removed. 

Warm water and detergent

A clean cloth moistened with warm water should be your first approach to getting chalk paint out of clothes. To begin:

  1. Remove excess paint with a dull knife or spoon. Be careful not to rub the stain more onto the fabric.
  2. Fill a small pail with warm water and mix in a splash of laundry detergent.
  3. Soak your lint-free cloth in the solution
  4. Then, carefully blot the stain with the damp cloth. Simply press the dampened cloth directly on the chalk paint stain. Avoid rubbing the stain since this will likely spread the stain, and press it further into the fibers of your clothes. 
  5. Continue blotting until the paint has been completely removed. You may need to rinse the dampened cloth several times during the process, depending on how much paint is on the clothing.
  6. Once you have removed most of the stain, you can throw the clothes in the wash to remove any remaining chalk paint. 

Vinegar Solution

Vinegar is another non-toxic solution that works effectively even on dried chalk paint stains. To begin: 

  1. Mix equal parts water and vinegar in a bowl, then pour it into a spray bottle. 
  2. Spray the solution directly on the clothes and let it sit for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Rinse your clothes with lukewarm water.
  4. Repeat this process several times until the paint comes off completely.

Note that you shouldn’t use this solution on silk or wool, as vinegar can potentially damage this fabric.

Baking Soda + Water

Baking soda is another non-toxic solution that is less harsh on the fabric compared to vinegar. Follow these steps:

  1. Make a baking soda paste with baking soda and a small amount of water.
  2. Apply the paste directly over the chalk paint stain and let sit for 10-15 minutes. During this time, the mixture will dry and help break down the pigment for easy removal.
  3. Rinse the area with lukewarm water, to wash out the paint and baking soda paste. 
  4. Add more baking soda and rinse until you get rid of all the paint stains.

Note that not all stains are equal. It may be more or less difficult to remove the chalk paint depending on the paint brand, and how long the paint has been sitting in the fabric. 

Salt and Lemon Juice

Salt is naturally abrasive and lemon is acidic. These two properties help break down the paint on the fabric. Follow these steps to use these home remedies:  

  1. Apply a pinch of salt to the paint stain. Add as much as you need to completely cover the chalk paint.
  2. Squeeze the lemon juice over the salted area.
  3. Let the products sit for five to ten minutes.
  4. Use a brush or sponge to remove the mixture and rinse the fabric under cold water.
  5. Cycle through the steps until you have completely removed the stain.

Stronger alternatives for removing tough chalk paint stains from clothes 

For more stubborn chalk paint stains that have fully dried already, it is best to use chemical-based solutions that you can buy from most hardware stores. These solutions include paint thinners such as acetone and turpentine. Rubbing alcohol also works as an effective stain remover. 

However, it’s important to understand that these products can damage some fabrics and fade colors so they should be considered last resort solutions.

To remove chalk paint with acetone, turpentine, or rubbing alcohol, follow these steps: 

  1. Use a clean cloth to gently blot the paint thinner or rubbing alcohol on the stain, starting from the outermost paint to the innermost part.
  2. Continue blotting until you see the paint transferring to your cloth and little to none of the stain is left on your fabric.
  3. Wash the clothing out with detergent. After, let it air-dry.

Note that rubbing alcohol may be safer for your fabric. But it is not as strong as turpentines or paint thinners and may not completely remove the chalk paint stain depending on how deeply the stain penetrated the fabric. If you are concerned that any of these solutions might do more harm than good, you can always test them in an inconspicuous area of your clothing as a spot test first. 



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