Need to clean nail polish stain off hardwood floor, help!
August 9, 2012 12:08 PM   Subscribe

Doing cleaning for moving out. We had nail polish stain on our hardwood floor. Need advice how to clean it up.

I previously googled this problem and followed some tips. We tried using rubbing alcohol and mineral spirits. But it didn't work. THe stain has been 2 months old. We scheduled with the company Stanley Steemer to come clean our hardwood floor. I asked them if they can clean the nail polish, they say that they can not guarantee that it will be clean. Can you give me tips on how to do this? What to buy before Stanley Steemer guys comes. Is there other company that can do this job? Thanks a lot.
posted by akomom to Home & Garden (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Oh, oh, I know this one! I had a nail polish bottle break on the hardwood floor in our last place and had to clean it before we moved. In an act of desperation, I used non-acetone nail polish remover. Got the polish up and didn't damage the finish on the floor, despite my extreme fear that it would.
posted by mostlymartha at 12:17 PM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

"Acetone is often the primary component in cleaning agents such as nail polish remover." Test it on the varnish first, though.
posted by Namlit at 12:17 PM on August 9, 2012

I remember reading about this at The Hairpin; what you want is Motsenbocker LiftOff #3! Looks like you can buy it at Lowe's, Home Depot, etc.
posted by stellaluna at 12:18 PM on August 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

What is the condition of the sealer? Is the floor work through to bare wood anywhere (high traffic areas)?

I'd try a non-acetone nail polish remover. Hopefully you won't have to sand it down and re-finish.
posted by chrisfromthelc at 12:20 PM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Another vote for non-acetone nail polish remover.

Whatever you do, don't use acetone or acetone-based nail polish removers. I've spilled it on wood floors and it's taken all of the finish off.
posted by quince at 12:41 PM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

I've used non-acetone nail polish remover on hardwood and it was fine. I accidentally got acetone nail polish remover on a wooden chair and it was a disaster so as everyone said, read the label for the type of remover!
posted by manicure12 at 7:51 PM on August 9, 2012

Just in case you don't manage to get it completely cleaned up, a couple of tips for your moving-out inspection:

Try to keep the light levels down so the stain is less noticeable - draw the curtains, try to arrange the inspection for the evening, etc.

The shinier the floor is, the harder it will be to see any imperfections, so give the floor a good polish after you are done cleaning it.
posted by primer_dimer at 2:11 AM on August 10, 2012

Response by poster: My result of using the non-acetone nail polish remover was good. (a small bottle costs 99cents from Walmart). The blue nail polish was gone, but it does take rigorous rubbing for the stain to be removed. From the side view, I can see maybe I rubbed too much, I can see patches of my floor that has kind of brush mark (my husband says he can't tell). It's not de-coloration, but still it's not completely just nice looking floor. So be careful of this.
posted by akomom at 9:10 PM on September 8, 2012

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