How to Get Permanent Marker Out of Quartz Countertop

Permanent marker stains on quartz countertops can be frustrating, but with a little effort, they can often be removed. Here are some tips for getting permanent marker off a quartz countertop.

Why Permanent Marker Stains Quartz

Quartz countertops are made from ground quartz combined with resins and pigments. This creates a very hard, non-porous surface that is resistant to stains and scratches. However, permanent markers contain dyes that can penetrate the surface and leave behind stubborn stains. The resin in the quartz binds to the dye molecules, making the stains difficult to remove.

Act Quickly for Best Results

It’s important to act quickly when trying to remove permanent marker from quartz. The longer the stain sits, the deeper it can penetrate into the material. Try to wipe off as much of the marker as possible right away using a paper towel. This can help prevent the stain from setting.

Mild Cleaners to Try First

Start with mild household cleaners before moving to more aggressive options. Here are some good options:

Dish Soap and Warm Water

Mix a few drops of dish soap like Dawn with warm water. Use a soft cloth or sponge to gently scrub the stain. The surfactants in the soap can help break down the bonds between the marker dye and the quartz. Rinse thoroughly after scrubbing.

Rubbing Alcohol

Apply some isopropyl alcohol directly onto the stain. Let it sit for a minute or two to penetrate, then wipe away with a clean cloth. The alcohol can dissolve some types of marker dyes. Be sure to rinse afterwards.

Baking Soda and Water Paste

Make a paste of baking soda and water. Apply it to the stain and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. The mild abrasiveness of the baking soda may help lift the stain without damaging the quartz. Rinse clean when done.

Stronger Cleaners for Stubborn Stains

If mild cleaners don’t remove all of the stain, try some stronger commercial cleaners:

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

These popular cleaning pads contain light abrasives that can help scrub off stubborn marks without damaging quartz. Dampen a Magic Eraser and gently rub the stain until it fades. Rinse after cleaning.

Quartz Cleaners

Look for commercial cleaners made specifically for quartz and engineered stone. Products like CLR Quartz & Granite Cleaner work well on permanent marker. Spray it on, let it sit for 5 minutes, and scrub with a nonabrasive pad.

Acetone Nail Polish Remover

The acetone in nail polish remover can dissolve stubborn marker stains. Use a small amount on a clean cloth and rub gently. Make sure to rinse thoroughly afterwards since prolonged acetone exposure can damage quartz.

Helpful Tips for Removing Permanent Marker

  • Act quickly before the stain has time to set. Wipe off as much as possible right away.
  • Try mild cleaners first to avoid damaging the quartz surface.
  • For tough stains, use a commercial quartz cleaner or acetone remover.
  • Always rub gently in a circular motion to break up the stain. Never scrub aggressively.
  • Rinse thoroughly after applying any cleaner to prevent residue buildup.
  • If one method doesn’t fully remove the stain, try another cleaner. It often takes multiple applications.
  • Reseal and polish the quartz after cleaning to restore its shine and protection.

With some persistent cleaning using the right products, you should be able to successfully remove permanent marker from quartz. Just remember to work quickly and gently to avoid damaging the surface.

Frequently Asked Questions About Removing Permanent Marker from Quartz Countertops

Can I use bleach to remove permanent marker from quartz?

No, avoid using bleach or hydrogen peroxide on quartz countertops. These harsh chemicals can damage and discolor the surface.

What happens if I can’t fully remove a permanent marker stain?

If a light stain remains, you may need to have the quartz countertop re-polished by a professional to remove the top layer and eliminate the stain. For deep set stains, the affected section of quartz may need replacement.

Is it possible to completely remove all traces of permanent marker?

In most cases, permanent marker can be fully removed from quartz with the right cleaning methods. But if the stain penetrates deep into the material, you may still see a very faint mark. Proper re-polishing should eliminate this.

Can magic eraser damage my quartz?

Magic erasers are generally safe for quartz if used gently. But aggressive scrubbing can damage the finish. Make sure to wring erasers out well so they are just damp. Also, rinse immediately after use.

What type of quartz stain remover works best?

Look for commercial cleaners specifically made for quartz and engineered stone. Products with ingredients like sodium carbonate, hydrogen peroxide, and citric acid can be effective at removing stubborn stains.

Should I reseal my quartz after removing marker stains?

It’s a good idea to use a quartz sealer after deep cleaning. This helps restore protection and prevent future stains. Use a sealing product made for quartz and apply according to the manufacturer’s directions.

Can I use nail polish remover on all quartz countertops?

Check your manufacturer’s care instructions before using acetone nail polish remover. Some quartz contains epoxy resins that can be damaged by prolonged acetone exposure. Use it sparingly on small stains only.


Permanent marker stains are certainly frustrating, but with some elbow grease and the right cleaning solutions, they can usually be removed from quartz countertops. The key is to act fast and start with gentle cleaners first before moving to more aggressive options if needed. With some persistence, your quartz countertop can look as good as new again. Just be sure to properly reseal and polish the surface after deep cleaning.