Sharpies and other permanent markers can leave unsightly stains on quartz countertops. Fortunately, there are several methods you can try to remove Sharpie marks from your quartz. With some persistence and the right techniques, you can get your countertops looking clean again.
What You’ll Need
- Rubbing alcohol
- Paper towels or clean cloths
- Magic eraser sponge
- Baking soda
- Dish soap
- White vinegar
- Plastic scraper
- Protective gloves
Act Quickly for Best Results
It’s important to act as soon as you notice a Sharpie stain on your quartz. The longer the ink sits, the harder it will be to remove. Blotting and wiping immediately after a stain occurs will lift much of the ink while it’s still wet.
Try Rubbing Alcohol First
For quick Sharpie stain removal, start with rubbing alcohol. The alcohol can help break down and dissolve the ink. Simply pour some onto a paper towel and blot the stain, pressing down firmly. Reapply more alcohol as needed. The ink should transfer to the towel.
Rub gently in a circular motion to lift more of the stain without scrubbing too hard. If any ink remains after blotting, let the alcohol sit for a minute or two before blotting again. The longer it soaks, the more it can dissolve the stain.
Use a Magic Eraser
Magic erasers work wonderfully to lift permanent marker stains. Their melamine foam construction gently abrades surfaces to remove marks.
Lightly wet the eraser and rub over the Sharpie stain in a circular motion. Apply light pressure rather than vigorous scrubbing. Check periodically to see if the ink is lifting. Re-wet and wipe as needed until the stain disappears.
Magic erasers can also be used dry by simply rubbing off the mark. However, adding a bit of water helps activate the cleaner.
Mix Baking Soda and Dish Soap
For another effective homemade cleaner, mix baking soda and dish soap into a paste. The grit of the baking soda combined with the degreasing action of the soap can break down stubborn stains.
Form a thick paste with approximately two tablespoons each of baking soda and dish soap, adjusting quantities as needed. Use a plastic scraper or old credit card to gently spread the paste over the stain. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes.
Wipe off the paste with a damp cloth, rinsing frequently. Check to see if the stain has lifted. Repeat as needed, allowing the paste to sit longer if it’s being stubborn.
Try Vinegar or Lemon Juice
Acids like vinegar and lemon juice can also help dissolve and lift permanent marker stains. Their acidic properties break down inks.
Pour some white vinegar directly onto the stain and allow it to soak for 5-10 minutes. Blot firmly with paper towels to lift the ink. For extra cleaning power, sprinkle baking soda over the vinegar and let it bubble for a minute before wiping.
Lemon juice works similarly. Let it soak in for a few minutes before blotting and wiping away. Reapply either vinegar or lemon juice until the stain disappears.
Use Gentle Cleaning Motions
It’s important to use gentle motions when removing Sharpie from quartz. Vigorous scrubbing can actually grind the ink further into the tiny pores of the stone.
Instead of harsh scouring, blot, wipe, and rub lightly using the cleaning agents listed above. Check often to see if the stain is lifting. Little by little, you’ll remove the discoloration without damaging the quartz.
Avoid Harsh Chemicals
Bleach, paint thinner, acetone, and other harsh chemicals may lighten stains somewhat, but they can also dull or etch quartz. It’s best to stick to gentler cleaners like alcohol, baking soda, vinegar, etc.
If you opt for a store-bought cleaner, select one specifically formulated for quartz and test in an inconspicuous spot first. Look for “non-acidic” on the label for a safer choice.
Be Patient and Persistent
Removing Sharpie stains takes patience and persistence. You may need to apply cleaners multiple times for full stain removal. But with consistent effort, the right techniques, and gentle rubbing, you can get your quartz counters looking like new again.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to remove Sharpie from quartz?
It depends on the stain, but expect it to take 10-20 minutes of concentrated effort. Letting cleaners soak helps lift more over time. For stubborn stains, it may take repeated applications over a couple days.
Can I use acetone on my quartz countertop?
No, acetone can damage, etch, and dull the protective coating on quartz. Stick to gentler cleaners like alcohol, baking soda, vinegar, etc.
What is the best homemade Sharpie remover?
For quartz, rubbing alcohol or a baking soda paste tend to work very well. Magic eraser sponges are also highly effective. Avoid harsh chemicals like bleach or paint thinner.
Will lemon get Sharpie out?
Yes! Lemon juice’s acidic properties help break down permanent marker stains. Simply let the juice soak in for a few minutes before wiping and rinsing clean. Reapply as needed for tough stains.
Why won’t the Sharpie come off my quartz?
If gentle cleaning isn’t working, the stain may be too set in. Try allowing cleaners to soak longer before wiping. Heavily stained areas may need repeated applications over several days. Avoid scrubbing too vigorously, as this can grind ink in further.
Can I use Mr. Clean Magic Eraser on quartz?
Yes, Magic Erasers are safe for quartz and excellent for removing Sharpie stains when used gently. Lightly wet the eraser and rub in a circular motion. Avoid harsh scrubbing which can damage the surface.
Though stubborn, Sharpie and permanent marker stains can be removed from quartz countertops. Quick action is key, along with gentle, repeated applications of cleaners like alcohol, baking soda, vinegar, or lemon juice. With time and persistence, you can erase those marks and restore your counters’ clean, flawless look.