How to Get Pen Ink Out Of Leather?

Leather products add to the beauty and luxury of your home interior on top of creating a lasting fashion statement. But the slightest stain on leather pieces can damage the overall appearance.

Some pens leave ink wherever they are stored. The little ones’ creative activities like drawing, painting, and writing are the leading cause you find your precious leather goods marked with unpleasant pen ink. And sometimes, adults leave pens mistakenly uncapped on leather items.

Whatever the causes of ink stains, they may appear unsightly with a pen stain or other marks on them. So, leather products require regular and attentive care. There are tips and tricks on how to get pen out of leather products to help you bring back the pristine look of leather furniture, accessories, and any type of leather items.

So, whether there is an ink spill from the pen, staining your purses, or getting on your leather couch while writing, this guide would help if you want to get them off.

how to get pen mark off of leather

How to Get Pen Ink Out Of Leather in a Few Steps

How to clean leather can be quite challenging but with the proper knowledge, it can be a breeze. Conversely, employing the wrong means in getting ink off can damage your leather products entirely.

There are actually some surprisingly simple and effective methods to remove pen marks from leather. The most popular and effective methods include using saddle soap, rubbing with alcohol, applying leather cleaner, and ink removers. However, using saddle soap or soapy water is the easiest way out and doesn’t have side effects.

Whatever means you apply, you must determine the leather type first.

Step One: Determine the Leather type

When removing stains from leather, it is crucial to determine the type of leather before taking any action. Different types of leather require different cleaning methods and products. For example, suede leather requires an entirely different approach than smooth or patent leather.

Using the wrong cleaning method or product can cause irreversible damage to the leather, leading to discoloration, cracking, or even tearing. It is also important to consider any treatments or finishes that may have been applied to the leather. Some leathers may have protective coatings that require special care.

Determining the finished or unfinished leather is easy as the finished or coated leather surface will not blot water drops on it, but unfinished leather will.

Step Two: Employing a Saddle Soap

Saddle soap is excellent for removing pen stains from leather, and they come with a great formulation that keeps the leather products protected. With excellent ingredients such as lanolin and glycerin, the leather piece appears rehydrated after use. It is pretty handy and help you get pen out of the leather couch with less effort.

  • Get a soft wet sponge or white rag
  • Apply some saddle soap on the pen-stained area
  • Then, rub mildly using the soft sponge or rag

Step Three: Removing Ink Stains with Alcohol

Applying alcohol on biro ink-stained leather products can quickly get the pen off, and doing so sooner can help get it out quickly. Here is how using alcohol can work magic to wipe off the pen stains on leather.

  • Get some rubbing alcohol and cotton balls
  • Wetting a cotton ball, apply the rubbing alcohol on the stained areas
  • Apply and rub gently in a circular motion
  • Allow the alcohol to stay on the piece for about 10 minutes, and see the stains disappearing gradually.

Note: Conducting a stain test first would be wise. Apply the alcohol on stains on a hidden part of the leather to determine how well this method would work. Also, as you apply the rubbing alcohol, try not to scrub the leather hard, as pressing hard on the leather surface wet with alcohol can damage the sleek finish.

Step Four: Use a Suitable Leather Cleaner

The best leather cleaners come formulated to be compatible with various leather types and ensure that your leather piece remains protected.

They are easy to apply and can get stains off the leather and make the leather piece appear as shiny as it used to be. A top-quality leather conditioner can make the product look new and keep it durable. Find these in various stores as a stand-alone product or get them with leather repair kits.

Step Five: Using Ink Removers

Well, there are some excellent ink-removing products available in stores that are quite effective. They come formulated with non-toxic ingredients that have great strength for removing pen ink stains.

Suitable for delicate materials, they can ensure the leather does not get damaged during the cleaning process. One such effective product is the Amodex Ink remover, and you can quickly apply some on stains and get them off.

Step Six: Condition Properly

Any cleaning or ink removal method is harsh for the leather to some extent- be it dish soap, alcohol, or commercial cleaning method. So, after removing ink or cleaning leather, it is important to condition it to restore its natural oils and prevent drying out.

Leather can become stiff and brittle without proper conditioning, which can cause cracking and damage over time. Conditioning also helps to maintain the leather’s suppleness and color.

Additionally, the well-conditioned leather surfaces will be more resistant to absorbing spills or dirt, making it easier to clean up quickly without leaving lasting marks.

Overall, taking the time to condition your leather properly after cleaning or removing ink will help prolong its lifespan and maintain its appearance for years to come.

Will a Magic Eraser Remove Ink from Leather?

Well, other than the ways described in the step-by-step guide, this product can remove ink stains as you apply it to the affected area. Formulated with melamine foam, they can wipe tricky stains off. Get one and dampen the tip, and start rubbing it against the stains.

Alternatively, you can make use of a nail polish remover (non-acetone-based), hairspray, and some mild liquid soap. Apply them gently on the ink-stained areas can help get those stains out. Does WD 40 remove ink from leather? Using WD 40 may help get ink stains out, but you should try to get the excess grease out of the leather after its application.


  • Before you try removing pen stains from any leather product, try to determine if you are working with finished or naked leather.
  • Fathom out the extent of the stain
  • Go through the care instruction from the leather manufacturer
  • Try not to use harmful products, as they may end up damaging your leather. One of the best ways to get pens off faux leather and even genuine leather is to use products that would cause damage to the end.
  • Try your best to bar kids from drawing or painting on leather furniture and accessories.

how to remove pen marks from leather sofa

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

How do you remove ballpoint pens from leather sofas?

Removing ballpoint pen stains from your leather couch can be relatively easy if you use efficient products. You can effectively clean the stains off using a suitable leather cleaner and apply a leather conditioner afterward.

Saddle soap or Isopropyl alcohol can also help, and you can apply them using a soft rag or cotton balls, respectively. Alternatively, you can get a good ink stain remover that would work right.

How do you remove a ballpoint pen from a leather purse?

You can use rubbing alcohol by applying it in a circular motion on the affected area using a cotton ball. Then allow the alcohol to sit on the leather purse for a short while; you would notice the stains disappearing. You can apply some cleaner and conditioner for leather products to remove any remaining stains on the leather purse.

Does WD 40 remove ink from leather?

WD 40 is one of the unproven products that is said to remove stains from leather. However, many persons keep attesting to its effective stain-removing capabilities. You can apply some on the stained leather and rub gently. You can keep doing this until the pen stain is gone. Then, try removing any excess grease using a soft cloth soaked in mild soapy water.

Does vinegar remove ink from leather?

Vinegar can serve as homemade leather cleaning and ink-removing agent, as a mixture of vinegar and olive oil can help get stains off leather products. Mix both in a spray bottle and spray sparsely on the ink-stained area. Let it remain there for about five minutes, and wipe it off gently.

Does baking soda remove ink?

Yes. The use of baking soda for removing ink stains is one of the simplest solutions. Make a mixture or paste of baking soda and water. Apply the paste on the stained area using a cotton ball, rubbing gently to ensure the ink stain does not spread across the entire surface. Do this repeatedly until the ink stains become invisible.

Does milk remove ink stains from leather?

Yes, you can easily use milk to get these stains off. For a more effective ink stain remover, you should try to use a mixture of milk and vinegar. Search for the stains on the leather and apply the mixture. Allow it to stay on the leather for a while, and wipe it off with a cloth.

Can Coke remove ink stains?

Using Coca-Cola can help get ink stains off various materials, as soaking the ink-stained area directly with Coke can help fight the stain. Apply on the stained surface and allow it to sit for a while. Then, gently rub off, and the stain becomes invisible.

Does lemon remove ink stains?

Yes. Using lemon mixed with some salt can help you get ink off some surfaces, and it can serve as an inexpensive ink-removing method. Mix some lemon juice with some parts of salt. Then, apply the mixture to the stained area and wait for the stain to disappear. You can also get a mild laundry detergent to clean that spot afterward.

Final Words

Ink stains from a pen can cause an unruly appearance on leather products, and you should employ great care in trying to keep those stains at bay. Whether these stains are on your leather car seats or any leather piece, this guide on how to get pens out of leather would help to get them off quickly and successfully. As said above, some excellent options include the use of leather cleaners and conditioners, alcohol, ink remover, and magic eraser.

But please ensure that you don’t make use of harsh products that would damage the leather.

Evina Naomi

Ewofere, Evina Naomi is a biotechnologist and passionate content writer. As a great lover of leather and various leather crafts, she broadly addresses leather-related issues. She is a writer of many excellent articles on leather. With great knowledge and enthusiasm, readers can access researched pieces on various leather types and the best techniques that work on them. Naomi is here to lead you through the journey of choosing excellent leather products and ensure you handle them rightly. So you can embark on your leather sewing and crafting journey with her and have an incredible experience.

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