One of the best things about giving yourself a manicure and pedicure at home is enjoying your “me time” on the couch with the TV going, and a tub of Ben & Jerry’s within arms reach. One of the worst things about giving yourself a manicure and pedicure at home is when you spill nail polish on the couch/your pants/the carpet/the dog. This will happen at some point – it’s inevitable, like death and taxes. Never fear, we have a few quick and easy ways to get those stains out before anyone even notices.
If you spill on…the carpet
Your plan of attack here depends on what color your carpet is. For light colored carpet, you want to scrape up what you can with the blunt side of a knife, then dab it with non-acetone nail polish remover. For dark carpet, polish remover might interact with the dye in the carpet and you’ll end up with a weird old mess, so stick with hair spray or rubbing alcohol and blot gently with a paper towel. If the polish was the same color as the carpet, save yourself some stress and just ignore it.
If you spill on…your clothes
It depends on the fabric. Nail polish remover does not play nice with some fabrics, causing dyes to run and even melting acetate (yikes). If you’re wearing cotton, linen, nylon, or acrylic, scrape the excess off first (use the blunt side of a knife), then test an inconspicuous spot to see how the nail polish remover reacts. If it doesn’t cause any adverse reactions, take to the stain with cotton pads soaked in polish remover and attack it from both sides of the fabric. Once the bulk of the stain is gone, you want to get that bad boy to the laundry pretty quickly.
If you’re wearing rayon, silk, or wool, scrape the excess off and try hair spray on the stain. Chances are you don’t have dry cleaning solvent in the house, so get your pants/shirt/dress down to your local dry cleaner as soon as you can.
If you spill on…the wooden coffee table
Whatever you do, DON’T put nail polish remover on the spill! It will ruin the finish on the wood, and leave a bigger, nastier stain. You know what works? Hair spray. Spray enough hair spray so that the entire spill is covered, leave it for 20-30 seconds to work its magic, then wipe it up with a paper towel. Repeat until all traces of your accident are erased.
If you spill on…the couch
Whoops! If your couch is leather or suede, scrape off the excess then mix up some mild soap and lukewarm water. Get the soap solutions really sudsy, and apply just the foam to the spill with a sponge. Dry with a clean cloth. If you didn’t notice the spill until it was too late and now it is hard, try rubbing the hardened spot with an artgum eraser, or very carefully file it away with an emery board.
If your couch is linen, nylon, or acrylic, scrape the excess off then test an inconspicuous spot to see how the nail polish remover reacts. If it doesn’t cause any adverse reactions, dab at the stain with cotton pads soaked in polish remover, then wash away the excess with the suds of a mild detergent and let it dry completely before you sit back down. Flipping the cushion is also an option.
If you spill on…the tiles
Wipe up any excess with a paper towel, then dab at the remaining mess with some acetone polish remover. Once it looks like the stain is gone, mix some detergent and water, and gently brush the area to remove any sign of your accident. Rinse with water and dry.
If you spill on…the dog
Poor Fido! What were you doing! This is the easiest fix of all spills – if the polish is still wet then just pop some non-acetone polish remover on a cotton pad and wipe down the sticky strands. If the polish is dry, it’s time for a bath. A little extra conditioner will work that spill right out. Same goes for your own hair, just in case you accidentally touched it before your polish was dry..