How to remove nail polish from your genuine leather couch

February 03, 2020

How to remove nail polish from your genuine leather couch

How to remove nail polish from your genuine leather couch

When it comes to your genuine leather couch, there’s nothing worse than that moment when you find yourself reaching out to try and catch your nail polish brush in time before it lands on your real leather sofa. This moment, almost certainly, occurs in slow motion, and you almost certainly, never catch it in time…


Removing nail polish from a genuine leather couch is no joke and is a task that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Not only does nail polish stain real leather, but if not removed correctly it can result in further damage and discoloration.


When it comes to removing nail polish stains, it is best to ask a professional as there is a fair risk of damaging the leather if not done correctly. However, if you are eager to remove the nail polish yourself, we recommend trying one of the following techniques.


White Vinegar and Olive Oil

It’s best to start with the least invasive method. Combining one part white vinegar and two parts olive oil may just do the trick. This is the safest option, however, it may not necessarily be the most successful. 


Step 1. Remove any access polish with a blunt knife or spatula. If you have only noticed the polish after it has already dried, push down the surface of the leather and peel off the excess polish using your fingernail. 


Step 2. Mix these two ingredients and slowly dip an old toothbrush into the mixture. 


Step 3. Using a toothbrush, scrub the mixture onto the stain. The mixture should aid the nail polish remnants in flaking off. 


Rubbing Alcohol or Surgical Spirits

Before using any of the following products, one should always do a patch test on your leather. Try blotting a small amount of the product onto a cotton ball and testing it on an inconspicuous area - perhaps underneath the couch.


Rubbing Alcohol or Surgical Spirits (often found in stores like Dischem and Clicks) is one of the most underrated cleaning products. It is an isopropyl/Ethanol that is commonly used as a disinfectant. Unlike water, which can potentially stain genuine leather, rubbing alcohol won’t penetrate the fabric and it dissolves quickly. Although it is less risky to use on genuine leather, it may not necessarily be ‘potent’ enough. If this technique fails, try non-acetone nail polish remover.


Non-acetone Nail Polish Remover

If surgical spirits did not do then trick when removing the nail polish stain (it all depends on the length of time the stain has been on the couch), try applying non-acetone nail polish remover to the stain. It is important to note that non-acetone nail polish remover is quite an invasive product and it may dry out the area. It is important to do a patch test and ensure you don’t let the remover come into contact with any unaffected areas.


Step 1. Apply a small amount of non-acetone remover to a cotton pad and rub the stain gently. It may take a few attempts so be sure to give the area time to dry before you proceed. 


Step 2. Once you have rubbed the area a few times and the stain has been removed, proceed to treat the area with a good genuine leather conditioner or moisturiser to the area. It is advisable to do the entire surface area in order to avoid any discolouration or differentiation between your couch and the previously stained area.


If this method is still not effective (due to an unnoticed, old nail polish stain), you can try a more potent product like acetone nail polish remover, however, this product is not recommended as it may discolour/bleach the area and result in further damage.


We will be reviewing the best possible genuine leather furniture conditioners in one of our upcoming blogs! Keep an eye out!