How To Remove Permanent Marker From White Board

Below is a video showing how to remove permanent marker from a white board.

It is easy to grab a permanent marker, on accident, and write on your white board instead of using the dry erase markers it is designed for.

Or, as occurred to the man on the video his child got hold of a Sharpie and wrote all over the white board.

The video shows a great little tip for easily removing these permanent markers from the white board -- just write over the permanent marker marks with a dry erase marker, and then wipe them both away.

It really is a cool tip, and so simple! I love simple solutions to cleaning and stain removal problems!

See the video for a full demonstration.

You can submit your own tip about how to remove permanent marker from any surface here, or read other tips already submitted.

In addition, plastic items like the white board, often get stains and dirt on them. You can share your tips for cleaning plastic here, or read other tips which have already been submitted.

*** Update: Finally, this page has been really popular, and lots of other readers have given their own advice below for how they remove these marks from the white board, so make sure you check them out as well! *** End Update

Photo by emdot

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Comments for How To Remove Permanent Marker From White Board

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it works!
by: Christine

I have had experienced the dreadful "did they really use permanent marker on this?" for the dry erase board at work. I covered it in dry erase marker and it did the trick! They called me magical when they saw the trick!

Toothpaste worked!
by: Anonymous

Don't give up hope. I tried the dry erase marker, rubbing alcohol, nail polish remover, Mr. Clean eraser, and hand sanitizer. Nothing was working. Crest toothpaste and an old toothbrush finally worked.

pencil eraser
by: Suzanne

My son figured out the a pencil eraser will remove Sharpie marker from a dry erase board.

nail polish remover
by: archana

Nail polish remover worked on white board to remove stains of permanent marker.

Not just on the whiteboard
by: Melissa

The dry erase marker trick to remove permanent marker works on other surfaces. This week I took my name off of a book I was ready to donate.

Hand sanitizer
by: Maureen

Hand sanitizer works.

Didn't Work
by: Anne

Maybe mine was on too long before I heard of all these tricks, but none of them work on my daughter's whiteboard. How can we get OLD permanent market off? I've been considering buying whiteboard paint, but it's expensive.

Dry wipe your pen marks away
by: Maureen

Use a dry wipe pen to scribble over the mark and wipe it quickly. Best not to use black because it can be hard to wipe away completely.

How teachers remove sharpie marks off whiteboards
by: Carole

First, get a white board or dry erase marker. Write directly over the permanent marker lines. As it dries, wipe w/a cloth. If residue or color is left, use *91%* rubbing alcohol, not 70%. The more powerful 91% breaks the chemical bonds. It's one of the first things I tell a rookie teacher.

Hand sanitizer
by: Donna

Hand sanitizer on a rag or paper towel works, too.

boiling water
by: Julie

I rub the board with boiling hot water.

Easy no doubt...
by: Margo

Try fingernail polish remover. Works like a charm and it's fast and easy.

Nail polish remover
by: Vimal festus

I dampen a cotton ball in nail polish remover and erase the permanent marker on the white board.... Voila !!!!

Expo white board spray
by: Anonymous

Expo white board spray and a rag removes permanent marker as well.

by: Pamela

Toothpaste cleaned a white board for me last week!

lemon oil
by: Evelyn

I have a white board and my kids do this all the time. I use lemon oil and it comes right off, no hard scrubbing, it just wipes off.

dry erase markers do work!
by: Chelsea

I have a white board that I use as a monthly calendar and I use permanent marker to make the grid and number the days of the month and then I use this trick to erase it. I have a wide tip dry erase that I use exclusively for erasing the sharpie. Love it.

91% rubbing alcohol
by: Jeanette

91% rubbing alcohol cleans the whole board... No problem.

hand sanitizer
by: Julianne

Hand sanitizer works. Basically the alcohol but thicker and easier to work with.

nail polish remover
by: Melinda

Nail polish remover works perfectly!

hand sanitizer
by: Andrea

I did this at school last week. Grabbed the hand sanitizer and it came right off!

rubbing alcohol
by: Cathy

Rubbing alcohol takes it right off!

cooktop cleaner too
by: Jessica

Yep, Magic Eraser or glass cooktop cleaner works great too. Cooktop cleaner makes an awesome dry erase cleaner.

Magic Eraser
by: Christy

Mr. Clean magic erasers take it off.

this trick works!
by: Tara

When I was a new teacher I accidentally wrote the entire day's assignments on the white board in sharpie marker...for grades K-5!!! I went to the janitor in a bit of a panic. He calmed me down, showed me this trick and helped me get it all back to rights.

Wonder why this works?
by: Anonymous

Huh, interesting tip. I wonder why it works? Do you know?

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CAUTION: This website is provided for informational purposes only. It is provided as is, without warranties or guarantees. Some stains and messes just won't come out, and are permanent. Further, some cleaning methods can harm your item, so if what you want to clean or launder is sentimental or expensive call a professional. See disclaimer of liability for more information.