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How to Get Acrylic Paint Out of Carpet: A Step-by-Step Guide

Did you get acrylic paint on your carpet? Your first instinct might be to call in a professional carpet cleaner. Well, you don’t have to start looking for one right away. With some elbow grease, you can remove the paint from your carpet before it can damage the fibers. This guide will provide tips and tricks to remove as much of the paint as possible. 

Quick Tips for Removing Acrylic Paint

Since acrylic paint dries quickly, you cannot let it sit. Act immediately, regardless of how you spilled the paint. Needless to say, dry acrylic paint is more difficult to remove from your carpet than when still wet. Here are some quick tips you can follow

Blot the Stain

When you spot a stain, use dry paper towels or a rag to blot it. Do not rub the wet paint, as that will make the stain penetrate the fibers. Continue blotting until you’ve cleaned the area.  

Rinse with Cold Water

Avoid using warm water when rinsing or scrubbing. Applying hot water to the stain will cause it to set and dry quickly. As mentioned, dried paint is incredibly difficult to remove. Therefore, only use cold water to saturate the stain if necessary. 

Use cold water to saturate the stain
Use cold water to saturate the stain

Avoid Harsh Chemicals

Initially, you should only use mild cleaning solutions. Avoid harsh chemicals, as they can cause discoloration. Mix mild liquid soap with water in a spray bottle and work the solution on the stain. Remember to test the solution on an inconspicuous area before you use it across the carpet. 

Step-by-Step Guide: Acrylic Paint Stain Removal

Are you searching for a TikTok video explaining acrylic paint stain removal? You might instinctively reach for your phone to find a solution to your predicament. Let us make things easier for you with a step-by-step guide:  

Loosen the Paint

Use a putty knife or needle-nose pliers to remove loose paint from the fibers. Be gentle and avoid penetrating too deep. 

Use a putty knife to loosen up the paint from the fibers
Use a putty knife to loosen up the paint from the fibers

Keep Blotting

Continue to use a clean cloth to blot the stain. Stop only when you see no wet paint on the towel. We recommend using a clean towel to blot the stain on each attempt. 

Apply Dish Soap and Water

Mix a cup of warm water and mild soap to create a cleaning solution. Apply the solution using a cloth. Let the solution set for a few minutes. 

Resume Blotting

Once the solution penetrates the paint, resume blotting the stain with a clean towel. Start by blotting towards the stain so the paint does not spread outwards. 


Rinse the carpet with cold water to remove the solution and the excess paint. 

Let the Carpet Dry

Use a vacuum or just air-dry the carpet after rinsing. 

These steps will help you quickly remove the spilled acrylic paint from your carpet, ensuring it looks as good as new. 

Common Mistakes to Avoid when Dealing with Acrylic Paint on Carpet

There are some don’ts when you are dealing with acrylic paint spills. You have to avoid these mistakes at all costs, or else you might end up causing more harm than good. 

Using Harsh Chemicals Right Away

Acetone is an effective acrylic paint remover. However, using acetone before you soften the paint can cause lasting damage to the carpet. 

Using Hot Water

As mentioned, combining hot water and acrylic paint can be devastating. The paint will dry quickly, and you must use a dull knife or another tool to lift it. 

Vigorous Rubbing

You must be extremely gentle when blotting the paint. Remember that the situation might cause you to panic, and you might start putting in extra effort to remove the paint. However, vigorously scrubbing or rubbing the stain will only cause the paint to penetrate the fibers and cause lasting damage. 

Not Testing Solutions

One of the most crucial cleaning tips is to test any cleaning solution you wish to use on a small carpet area. You can apply the solution to the corner and check its impact rather than applying it over a larger area and then discovering that it causes the color to fade. 

You will notice that most of the mistakes mentioned here will likely occur if you act hastily. You have to act fast when you spill acrylic paint on your carpet. However, that does not mean you don’t use common sense. 

Best Cleaning Products for Tackling Acrylic Paint Spills

In some cases, you might need to use some common cleaning products to remove the paint. Here are a couple of ideas:

White Vinegar Solution

Mix 10 parts white distilled vinegar with 10 parts water for an effective cleaning solution. Vinegar is safe to use on most carpets and also dissolves paint quickly. 

Isopropyl Alcohol

To remove the paint easily, use isopropyl alcohol. Rub the alcohol on a small cloth and blot the paint. After applying the rubbing alcohol, rinse the area with cold water. 

Acetone or Nail Polish Remover

For carpet cleaning, you can use concentrated acetone or nail polish remover (should contain acetone). However, test the chemical on a small area to check its impact. Only use it as a spot remover once you know it will cause no damage. You have to follow some precautions when using chemicals. Ensure proper ventilation so that the fumes from the acetone don’t cause breathing problems or other health issues. Also, wear gloves before you handle any harsh chemicals. 

Preventing Future Accidents: Tips for Protecting Your Carpet from Acrylic Paint

Cover the Carpet

Whenever you start a new painting project, cover the carpet completely. Use waterproof sheets or drop clothes to prevent accidents. We recommend using a tarp or a plastic sheet, as you can reuse them. 

Prepare a Cleanup Kit

Accidents can happen unexpectedly; therefore, you must be ready to act. Prepare a cleanup kit in case you spill paint anywhere. Rather than scrounging around for clean rags and paper towels, have them ready as soon as needed. As we keep mentioning, you cannot take the time to think once paint falls on your carpet. With a handy cleanup kit, you can start cleaning right away. 

Store Paint Supplies Carefully

Last but not least, you must store your paint supplies carefully. Do not leave open containers lying around. All it takes is a small collision, and the paint will start dripping. 

Use common sense to prevent future accidents. Be extra careful when using paint around your house, especially when you have carpeting. 

Professional Help: When to Call in the Experts for Acrylic Paint Stain Removal

Despite your best efforts, there is a chance that you might not be able to get all the paint out of your carpet. In this situation, you need to contact a professional carpet cleaning service. Here’s when you should call in the experts:

Large Stains

Large stains are very challenging to remove, and larger spills often result in stubborn, persistent stains. If you have been attempting to remove dried paint without success, it’s time to seek help from the experts. 

Lack of Knowledge

There is no shame in admitting that you know little about removing paint from your carpet. Rather than experimenting with items that you are familiar with, seek help from professionals. 


DIY cleaning can cause more harm than good, particularly for expensive carpets. Rather than risking the value of your rug, leave the job to the experts. 

Professional cleaners know the ins and outs of removing acrylic paint from fibers, even if the paint dries off. Conversely, you would be a rookie trying to make the best of the situation. Therefore, do not hesitate to call an expert when needed. 

Natural Remedies for Getting Acrylic Paint Out of Carpet

At the risk of sounding repetitive, dry paint can damage the carpet fibers. Lucky for you, some natural remedies for getting acrylic paint out are completely safe. Here are a couple of options you can consider:

Baking Soda and Water

Combine baking soda and water to create a thick paste. Mix 1 part water with sufficient baking soda to achieve a thick consistency. Cover the entire stain using this mixture and let it sit. Once the paste dries, vacuum the affected area to remove the residue. 

Lemon Juice and Salt

Lemon juice + salt
Lemon juice + salt

This remedy takes a while to work but is effective nonetheless. Combine equal amounts of lemon juice and salt to form a paste. Apply the paste to the stain, ensuring that you cover it completely. Leave the paste on overnight, as it will break down the paint, making it easier to remove. Next, blot the affected part without rubbing, as that would spread the paint. After this, rinse the paste and the paint residue before blotting the area with a damp cloth. 


We hope this brief guide lets you deal effectively with an acrylic paint spill on your carpet. Do not let the paint dry, keep cleaning products handy, and take some precautions to make the cleanup convenient and hassle-free.

Michael F

Michael F

Owner, Elevated Cleaning

Michael started Elevated Cleaning to help fill a gap in the Florida cleaning market. With a focus on quality, and a passion for giving back to the community, Elevated Cleaning continues to serve hundreds of happy homeowners each month.

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Michael F.

Michael F.

Owner, Elevated Cleaning

Michael started Elevated Cleaning to help fill a gap in the Florida cleaning market. With a focus on quality, and a passion for giving back to the community, Elevated Cleaning continues to serve hundreds of happy homeowners each month.

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