How to Remove Stains from Emulsion Painted Walls

Emulsion paint is a great way to add color and style to your home, but it can be difficult to remove stains from this type of paint finish

If you’re looking for an easy way to get rid of those pesky stains on your walls, then look no further than our guide on how to remove the most common types of stains from emulsion-painted walls.

We have compiled a list of the most common types of stains that are found in homes with emulsion-painted walls. These include coffee, tea, wine, ink or marker pen, and even lipstick!

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Our guide will show you how each one should be treated so that you can enjoy your beautiful walls without worrying about any unsightly stains.

Best Ways Remove Marks from Emulsion Painted Walls

Discover the Type of Paint on Your Walls

Before you tackle stains on your emulsion-painted wall you need to find out what type of finish the paint has. This is an important step as the way you treat the stains is different for the various types of paint finishes.

Of course, this is easy if you have painted it yourself!

If you are in a rental or a newly bought home you might need to inspect your walls carefully. Flat paint doesn’t reflect much light, and it will feel slightly chalky and dry to the touch.

Eggshell, semi-gloss, and satin finishes will have a light-reflecting sheen and feel smooth to the touch.

Moisture-resistant paint kitchens and bathrooms will reflect light and feel cool and smooth to the touch.

How to Clean Stains from Walls with Matt Flat Paint: Tips

The problem with flat paint is the way it will absorb stains making it difficult to just wipe them off.

Always be prepared for failure as some stains will be impossible to remove. In this case, all you can do is repaint the affected area or wall.

When decorating your home with flat emulsion try to keep small paint sample pots of the color used as a quick way to cover up stains.

Here are some tips to follow to ensure stain removal success. It is so easy to damage the finish of flat paint walls.

  • never over wet or soak the wall
  • if possible tackle the stain immediately before it drys
  • never rub or scrub hard this can remove the paint finish completely
  • dab the cleaning products on gently with a wrung dry damp soft cloth or sponge
  • don’t use harsh cleaning products like bleach or strong degreasers

Tips for Cleaning Semi-Gloss, Satin, or Eggshell Painted Walls

Because these paints are slightly more water-resistant than flat emulsion, they’re most often seen in high-traffic rooms such as the kitchen and bathroom.

They are much easier to clean than a flat wall. Here are some tips for successfully dealing with stains on these types of walls.

  • it is ok to spray walls with a mild degreaser, but don’t allow it to soak in. Spray on and wipe off straight away.
  • don’t soak the walls with water or cleaning products
  • never scrub areas hard this will damage the surface of the paint or even remove the paint altogether.
  • if possible tackle stains immediately

Test a Patch on the Wall

If you are ever unsure about using a particular cleaning product on your wall consider doing a patch test on the wall.

Just choose an inconspicuous area like behind the sofa and test a small area out. Allow to dry and inspect the area afterward for any damage.

How to Remove Coffee and Tea Stains from Painted Walls

Freshly spilled coffee and tea should just wipe away using a barely damp cloth.

Most dried coffee and tea stains should come out with a micro cloth dipped in dish soap diluted in water. Dab gently with the cloth and avoid rubbing hard.

How to Remove Stickers from Painted Walls

Stickers are a favorite pastime for children, who if you are not vigilant will start sticking them on every surface they can find.

They are difficult to remove from painted surfaces without causing damage to the paint.

Try the following steps.

  • attempt to gently ease the sticker off the wall stop if you are causing damage to the wall.
  • if the sticker is resistant to gentle easing, heat the sticker with a hairdryer or heat gun to melt the glue. This step should make it easy to peel off the sticker, do this slowly and carefully to prevent damage.
  • any glue residue can be removed using a product like goo gone, nail polish remover, or a mixture of water, dish soap, and vinegar. Whatever you use avoid soaking the wall.

How to Remove Lipstick, Crayon, Ink and Pencil

2 Ink-B-Gone Stain Remover Cleans Marker, Crayon, Makeup From Furniture, Leather

Children love to scribble on walls turn your back for a few moments and you might find they have Jackson Pollocked your walls.

If this happens in extreme cases of thickly applied crayon, lipstick or inks you may find it is just easier to paint over the affected areas.

However, try one of these tips first to see if it will help:

  • For pencil marks use a pencil eraser to gently rub the marks away.
  • For any lipstick, wax crayon, colored pencils, or ink marks try a magic sponge eraser dampened and used gently.
  • For resistant marks try treating the area with a damp cloth dipped in baking soda. Gently rub the area and repeat if necessary.
  • Alternatively use a commercial product like Ink-B-Gone Stain Remover

How to Remove Cooking Grease and Oil Stains

This is a common problem in kitchens. This is the reason we have washable backsplashes in most oil or grease splattered areas.

Oil and grease splattered onto painted walls will be absorbed, making it extremely difficult to remove.

If you see oil or grease marks on your emulsion-painted walls try this.

Use white vinegar to remove oily stains from your walls if you’re a fan of old cleaning methods.

Mix white vinegar 50/50 with warm water and a little clear dish soap.

Using a damp sponge dab the affected areas with the mixture and dab off with a dry cloth. Don’t be tempted to rub or scrub.

Ways to Remove Scuff Marks for Paintwork

Just living day to day will result in scuffs and marks appearing in your beautiful emulsion walls it’s unavoidable really. Bringing groceries in, vacuuming, and carrying suitcases can easily lead to scruffs.

To remove these marks try this simple method.

Have a small bowl of warm water ready, wrap a cloth around your finger (I like micro cloths!), dip into the water, and then dip the damp cloth into baking soda. Gently rub the scuff marks with your finger, hardly any pressure is required.

Removing Marker Pen from Walls

Removing permanent marker pen ink from walls will always be tricky as the method for removing the ink will often damage the paint surface.

If large areas of the wall have been scribbled on I would recommend repainting.

For small areas try this Ink and Stain Remover.

Cleaning Off Dirt, Mud, and Grime from Paintwork

I used to have two dogs that were quite hairy. Although they were dried off after their walks I still ended up with patches of dirt and grime appearing on my hallway walls.

I found the best way of removing this was just dish soap in warm water, applied with a sponge that was wrung out so it wasn’t sopping wet. I followed this with a dry cloth to dab away excess moisture. I found this worked just as well and any other method.

How to Clean Blood off Painted Walls

Before dealing with blood consider wearing rubber gloves.

Fresh blood can be washed away with a cloth and cold water. If you are quick enough there won’t be any stains.

However, if you come across dried bloodstains treat them with dish soap diluted in warm water. Gently rub the stain away without scrubbing using a just damp sponge or cloth.

Using Cleaning Erasers to Remove Stains on Walls

STK 20 Pack Extra Thick Magic Cleaning Pads - Eraser Sponge for All Surfaces - Kitchen-Bathroom-Furniture-Leather-Car-Steel - Just Add Water to Erase All Dirt - Melamine - Universal Cleaner

Wall cleaning is no easy task, especially if you want to keep your walls looking new.

One of the most popular methods for doing this involves using a special eraser-like tool that can remove tough spots or stains from difficult to clean surfaces like flat paint.

All it takes is some water and these magic sponges!

  • Before you start dealing with any spots or stains on your walls, try it out on an inconspicuous area. Cleaning erasers may remove wall-stains, but they might also harm the paint finish.
  • gently rub (don’t scrub or rub hard) until the stain fades away.
  • After you’ve verified that the cleaning eraser is safe for your wall you can start using the magic sponge for cleaning.
  • Just wet the cleaning eraser gently rub until the stain fades away. Don’t scrub too hard, or you may create a stain on your wall that’s even worse than the original.


I hope that you found this guide useful and informative. Now you know all about the different types of stains that are commonly found on emulsion-painted walls, and what you should do to remove each one.

Now instead of feeling, you have to redecorate your home you can just apply some of these tips and hacks to the stains on your walls.

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How to Remove Stains from Emulsion Painted Walls