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Permanent Marker Removal

We use markers every day, at every age, for a variety of things. From making sports signs to cheer on our favorite team, to coloring books and refrigerator artwork, markers leave a visible imprint that can brighten up our surroundings.

And sometimes that visible imprint turns out to be a tough-to-handle permanent marker stain – yikes! No worries – if you need a hand dealing with pesky permanent marker removal, you’ve come to the right place.
Check out COIT’s do-it-yourself guide and discover a few ways to tackle these colorful stains.

History of Markers

Before we dive into specific marker stain removal tips, let’s take a closer look at the history of markers, which date back to 1953. It was during this year that Sidney Rosenthal invented the felt tip pen and changed the world of written communication for years to come.

Rosenthal, an inventor from New York, realized that when you place a felt tip on the end of a bottle of permanent ink, it can leave a mark that’s not only rich in color, but lasts long on the surface.
If you dig even deeper into the history of the marker, you’ll see that markers’ ancestors actually date back to the Egyptian times. Around 3200 B.C., the Egyptians needed a way to write and paint. They began mixing vegetable gum and fine soot to create a form of ink that allowed them to deliver messages and tell stories that still exist today.

Ingredients in Felt Tip Markers

Within the body of the marker, you’ll find these ingredients:

• Marker, body and cap are made of plastic resin.
• The reservoir (the part that holds the ink) is made of polyester.
• The felt writing tip is formed using water and powder.
• Ink dye contains cyclic alkylene carbonates.
• Additives within the ink that act as wetting agents.

Types of Markers

There are a wide variety of markers that are designed for specific uses.

Permanent markers – can write on wood, glass, metal, stone and plastic and resists rubbing and water (the ink lasts several years)

Highlighters – used to make other writing more visible when applied over existing ink

Security markers – contain fluorescent (but invisible) ink – these are used for marking valuables in case they’re stolen (can view the owner’s name using ultraviolet light)

Non-permanent markers – uses erasable ink and contains less toxic materials than some permanent ink

Porous point pens – contain tips made of felt or ceramic

Now that you know a bit more about the history and types of markers you may come across with marker stains, let’s take a closer look at some helpful permanent marker remover tips.

Permanent Marker Stain Removal Tips

If you’re trying to remove marker from carpet, take a bit of rubbing alcohol and rub it onto the marker stain using a cloth. Let the stain sit for 30 minutes to an hour and blot the affected area with a clean sponge. Continue blotting the stain until marker is no longer visible.

For more than just permanent marker removal tips, check out COIT’s professional cleaning services. Learn how our professionally trained technicians can help you conquer the toughest stains.