How to Remove Crayon Stains From 5 Types of Surfaces

Jacqueline Quach
Written by Jacqueline Quach
Updated June 17, 2022
Mom and daughter learning to read
Photo: Flamingo Images / Adobe Stock


  • Oxygen bleach is effective at removing crayon stains from clothing.

  • Scrape excess crayon from upholstery and leather before spot-cleaning.

  • Dish soap is a great all-purpose crayon cleaner for most surfaces.  

  • Crayon stains typically come off unless melted or heated.

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Coming home to find your home decorated with crayon scribbles is not ideal, especially if you’d rather see your child’s artwork taped to the refrigerator. While crayons give kids hours of fun, it’s less fun to spend hours cleaning crayon marks off every surface in your home.

Luckily, we have easy solutions for clean crayon stains that don’t require a deep-clean of your home. If you’re looking to get rid of crayon stains around the house, here’s what you need to know.

Do Crayons Leave Permanent Stains?

Crayon usually doesn’t stain unless melted or heated, leaving a greasy residue. It may also leave a lasting mark if the stain is large or heavy. Most crayon marks will come off, but if they remain after multiple DIY cleanings, it may be time for extra help. Consider hiring a professional cleaner near you if you have especially stubborn stains.  

Removing Crayon Stains from Clothes

Crayon stains are usually easy to remove from your clothes, but they leave hard-to-clean stains when melted. If you have some clothing with crayon stains, avoid putting them in the dryer, ironing them, or applying heat to the clothing. 

To get rid of crayon stains on clothes, work dish soap into the stains and let it sit for a few minutes. Afterward, run it under warm water to remove the stain. Wash it in your washing machine using the heaviest soil setting and add oxygen bleach to your load.  

When you launder more than one item of clothing, you’ll want to wash fabrics of similar colors together. Heavily colored fabrics can bleed with oxygen bleach and create stains on lighter clothing. 

Removing Crayon Stains from Upholstery

If you’ve found some surprise crayon stains on your upholstery, use a dull knife to gently scrape the crayon off the surface. Make sure not to use too much force to avoid damaging your upholstery. 

Once you’ve scraped as much crayon as possible, dampen the stained surface with warm water. Work some dish soap into the surface and scrub gently with a toothbrush. Once you’ve scrubbed thoroughly, you can wipe off the dish soap with a damp sponge. Your patience will be rewarded—keep repeating these steps until the stain disappears. 

If your efforts haven’t completely removed the crayon, you can hire a professional upholstery cleaner to finish the job. You can expect to pay about $160 for furniture upholstery cleaning services.  

Removing Crayon Stains from Walls 

Woman cleaning white wall
Photo: New Africa / Adobe Stock

Cleaning crayon scribbles on your walls is an easy fix. You can always remove crayon portraits drawn on your once-blank walls—no matter how big or small.  

There are many ways to return your walls to their former glory. You can use a combination of the following removal tips or stick to one. Either way, your walls will be sparkling clean in no time.  

  • Baking soda: Soak a towel with warm water and dip it in baking soda. Scrub the stain areas with the towel until the crayon comes off.

  • Vinegar: Here’s another surprising way to use vinegar. Dip a toothbrush in vinegar and scrub the crayon stains until they disappear. 

  • Toothpaste: Wet a toothbrush and apply toothpaste to it. Scrub the walls until the crayon comes off. 

  • Eraser: Take an eraser and use it to erase the crayon stains from the walls.  

Removing Crayon Stains from Wood

While it can be distressing to see your wooden dining table or chairs with crayon marks, never fear—try not to panic. Keep in mind that removing crayon stains requires a different process than how you typically clean wood furniture. 

Start by filling a bowl with warm water and mix in dish soap and laundry detergent. Dip a towel or toothbrush in the mixture and scrub the stain in a circular motion, repeating until the crayon streaks are gone.

If you find that the stains are still stuck, treat the spots with mayonnaise or toothpaste. Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise or toothpaste, and let it sit for several minutes. After you’ve left it to soak, wipe the stain off with a towel. You can also dampen a cloth with mineral spirits and wipe it over the crayon stains. It cleans any wax residue from the crayon while leaving the finish of your wood pristine. 

Removing Crayon Stains from Leather 

To get a crayon stain off of leather surfaces, use a dull knife to lightly scrape the crayon off. Once that’s finished, mix fuller’s earth with water, creating a thick paste. Fuller’s earth is a mineral clay usually used for household cleaning, so it will help absorb the crayon residue. 

Carefully apply the paste to the crayon stains and wait for it to dry, then brush it off using a clean towel. If you see any remaining stains, repeat these steps until they’re completely gone. Since the fuller’s earth can dry out your leather, apply a leather conditioner to the newly-cleaned spots to keep your leather in peak condition. 

What Type of Cleaners Remove Crayon Stains?

While the type of cleaner you use to remove crayon stains depends on the surface or material, dish soap is a reliable all-purpose cleaner for most surfaces except leather. 

If you want to try a different type of cleaner, spot-test it on a less noticeable area to ensure it’s safe to use. It’s best to opt for gentler solutions when removing crayon stains and leave the heavy-duty cleaning to professionals. 

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