How To Get Washable Paint Out of Clothes [Easily]

Painting can be a fun and relaxing activity for people of all ages, but it can also be messy! Getting paint out of clothes can be a challenge, and getting a stain on a favorite garment is disappointing and wasteful. Luckily, some manufacturers produce washable paint that’s designed to wash away easily.

Here’s how to get washable paint out of clothes:

  1. Wash the garment in hot water and laundry detergent.
  2. Soak the garment in stain remover.
  3. Use rubbing alcohol to diminish the stain before washing.
  4. For white clothing, use bleach or hydrogen peroxide.

In the rest of this article, I’ll answer all of your questions about washable paint and how to remove them from clothing in the event of a mess. If you or your children are fans of painting, but you’re tired of ruining clothes with your artistic endeavors, this article is for you.

Ways of Getting Washable Paint Out of Clothes

The good thing about washable paint is that there are several ways you can get it out of clothes. Additionally, getting the paint out of clothes is a relatively easy process, so you don’t have to worry about a long, stressful clean up.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these methods for removing washable paint from clothes:

1. Wash the Garment in Hot Water and Laundry Detergent

The first step of this method is to rinse the stain with hot water until you can’t remove any more color. The more color you can get out of the garment in this initial stage, the better. Once the water is running clear, you can move on to washing.

Wash the garment in hot water with water detergent for a full heavy soil cycle. My favorite laundry detergent for removing stains is Persil ProClean Liquid Laundry Detergent, available on

The power-boosted formula effectively fights tough stains, and I like the odor elimination technology that will help remove the odor of paint as well.

After washing, let the garment or garments air dry instead of putting them in the dryer. Try laundering again if you can still see the paint on the clothes.

soaking garment in stain remover

2. Soak the Garment in Stain Remover

Another effective way to remove washable paint is to soak the clothes in stain remover. My favorite stain remover is OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover Powder, which you can get on This stain remover is easy to use and effectively removes various stains, including washable paints.

Soak the clothes for 1-6 hours, depending on how severe the stain is. Then, wash the clothes normally. The paint stain should be completely gone (source: Oxi-Clean).

Bear in mind you should never mix Oxiclean and bleach, or with many other products.

3. Use Rubbing Alcohol To Diminish the Stain Before Washing

Rubbing alcohol has been a stain-removing method for a long time. Although the smell of rubbing alcohol can be a little overpowering, it works very well. To use this method, follow these steps:

  1. Wet the paint stain with warm water until the spot is damp.
  2. Soak a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and use the cotton ball to rub the stain.
  3. Keep rinsing with warm water and scrubbing until the stain is gone.
  4. Wash the clothes to eliminate any lingering traces you may not have noticed.

4. For White Clothing, Use Bleach or Hydrogen Peroxide

If the clothing is white, you can use bleach to get the stain out. If you prefer to use milder substances, you can use hydrogen peroxide instead of bleach, as it’s also an effective stain remover.

If you or your child gets washable paint on clothes, you can usually get the stain out using one of these methods.

Does Washable Paint Always Come Off Clothes?

Washable paint always comes off clothes when it’s wet. However, after the paint has dried, some colors are difficult to come out of clothes, but multiple washes will usually remove them.

When it’s wet, washable paint is easy to get off of clothes because they’re water-based, so some soap and water will be able to remove the paint before it dries.

However, the removal process becomes more difficult after the paint has dried, especially for strong colors like red, black, and dark blue (source: Romper).

However, these paints can still be washed out of clothes in most cases. For the best results, scrape off as much of the dry paint as you can before washing.

Does Crayola Washable Paint Come Out of Clothes?

Crayola washable paint does come out of clothes. This paint comes out of most fabrics when washed in hot water and soaked in OxiClean. If the paint doesn’t come out in the first wash, another wash should do the trick.

Crayola manufactures their washable paint line with messy children in mind, so the paint is supposed to be able to wash out of most fabrics. On their website, the company suggests rinsing the garment, washing it in hot water for a full heavy soil cycle, and soaking it in OxiClean (source: Crayola).

The washable paint is also designed to wash off skin and other surfaces easily because it doesn’t bind to surfaces permanently. For more on this, see my article on what washable markers actually are.

In some cases, the paint even comes off of paper after some time. For this reason, if you want your painting to last a long time, it’s better to go with non-washable paint and risk ruining your clothes.

a woman ironing clothes

How Do I Make Washable Paint Permanent on Clothes?

You can make washable paint permanent on clothes by ironing the paint at medium or high heat for five minutes. However, only iron the clothes after the paint has dried completely. 

The best way to make washable paint permanent is to heat-set it with an iron. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure that the paint is completely dry. It’s best to wait a full twenty-four hours before heat-setting.
  2. Press an iron to the paint for five minutes. Ensure the iron is at medium or high heat.
  3. Wait at least four days before washing the clothes. This gives the paint enough time to set (source: The Spruce Crafts).

My favorite iron is the Professional Grade 1700W Steam Iron, available on I like this iron because the specially designed steam distribution is ideal for crafters and will evenly heat any paint that you are setting. 

This iron allows you to adjust the steam output and temperature based on the fabric type, and there’s also a 3-way shut-off system that helps prevent accidents and burnt clothes.

So, if you’re hesitant about using washable paint for fear of ruining your clothes, it’s time to pick up the paintbrush! Washable paint almost always comes out of clothes if you take a few extra steps in the laundering process.