We’ve probably all experienced getting melted crayon on our clothes at least once, especially if you have kids. Crayons can be left inside pockets while the clothes are being washed and dried, or they can melt onto upholstery or carpets and get sat on. If either of these has happened to you, don’t worry. I’m here to tell you how to get melted crayon out of clothes.
Melted crayons can leave both a waxy or greasy residue on clothes and a pigmented stain from the color itself. You’ll want to use a product that can loosen the wax as well as break down the greasy and pigmented stain. Depending on the size of the stain, you may have to use a combination of ice, dish soap, WD-40, and stain remover before washing the clothes.
Although melted crayon can be difficult to get out of clothes, it isn’t impossible. By following the methods in this article, you should be able to get most if not all of the melted crayon out of your clothes.
- Are Melted Crayon Stains Permanent?
- Do Melted Crayon Stains Come Out in the Wash?
- How to Get Melted Crayon Out of Clothes
- Can You Get Crayon Out of Clothes That Went Through the Dryer?
- How to Remove Melted Crayon From Upholstery and Carpet
Are Melted Crayon Stains Permanent?
Melted crayon stains are some of the most difficult stains to remove due to the way the wax hardens when dry but also due to the pigments in the crayon. Melted crayon will be easier to remove from the fabric’s surface but harder to remove if it becomes embedded in the fibers.
Melted crayon stains are not necessarily permanent as long as you try to remove them as soon as possible and use the right products. However, the longer the stain sits on the fabric, especially if it goes through the dryer, the harder it will be to remove.
Depending on the color of the crayon, the stain may not be as noticeable on darker clothes if you can at least get all of the melted crayon off the surface. Getting melted crayon out of lighter clothes will require a little more work because you’ll need to remove as much as you can out of the fibers as well.
Do Melted Crayon Stains Come Out in the Wash?
If you use really hot water to wash your clothes, it’s possible that some of the stains will come off as the wax remelts, or if the crayon hasn’t fully dried yet. However, it’s not likely that it will all come out as there may still be crayon left in the fibers even if it washes off of the surface.
If you’re trying to remove melted crayon in this way, be aware that you run the risk of damaging your clothes since some clothes can’t be washed in hot water. You could risk staining other clothes if some of the crayon gets into the washing machine and doesn’t get rinsed out.
There are better ways to get melted crayon stains out before you try to wash them more effectively. Pre-treating the stain before washing it is the best way to remove all of the crayon. After pre-treating the stain, then you can wash the clothing and you will likely have better results at getting it all out.
How to Get Melted Crayon Out of Clothes
There are a few different ways you can get melted crayon out of clothes using things that you probably already have at home. However, you may have to use one or more of these pre-treatment methods as a step-by-step process to be successful. How effective each method will be on its own depends on the size of the stain and how old it is, but using all of them should get most of the stain out.
If the crayon stain is small, then ice may be all you need to remove it. But even if the stain is large, you can still use ice as the first step toward removing the stain. Ice works by chilling and freezing the stain, which loosens it and makes it easier to scrape off clothes.
Be aware that using ice only helps to remove crayon wax from the surface of the clothing and it won’t do much to remove wax that is embedded into the fibers. All you need to do is take an ice cube and run it over the stain several times to chill it, then proceed to the next step below.
2. Scrape Off Excess Wax
Whether or not you used ice to chill the stain, and whether or not the stain is fresh or older, it’s a good idea to try to scrape off as much of the crayon wax as possible from the surface of the fabric. You can use a dull edge knife or scraper to avoid damaging the fabric.
Scraping off excess wax is necessary so that stronger products can be used to remove the crayon underneath embedded into the fibers. Using ice to chill the stain first makes it easier to peel the wax away from the fabric. After scraping off as much wax as you can, proceed to the next step.
3. Dish SoapThe next step is to apply dish soap to the stain. Dish soap is specially formulated to break down grease from food on dishes, so it also works well for breaking down greasy stains. But again, how effective this method is on its own depends on how large and old the stain is.
Apply enough dish soap to cover the stain and gently rub it into the stain with your fingers. Let the soap sit on the stain for up to 10 minutes if the stain is newer and up to an hour if the stain is older. Afterward, rinse the soap off and hopefully, some of the crayon residue will come out with it.
If most of the stain has been removed, wash the clothing on the heavy soil setting and add bleach to help with removing the rest of the stain and the pigment. Be sure to use bleach that is safe for the clothing (either oxygen or chlorine bleach- check the care tag). Remember that chlorine bleach will remove the color from clothes, so unless the clothes are white, the oxygen bleach is the safest.
After washing the clothes, check to see if the stain has been removed before putting them in the dryer. If the dish soap didn’t work or the stain is still there after washing, move on to the next step.
WD-40 can be very effective for removing melted crayon from clothes, even if some wax has been embedded into the fibers. WD-40 contains lubricating agents which help to loosen the wax from the fibers.
To use it, spray WD-40 directly onto the stain and let it sit for a few minutes. WD-40 can leave behind a stain itself, so you’ll want to apply dish soap to the stain afterward and let it sit for a few minutes as well. Rinse the clothing to remove both the dish soap and the WD-40, and you should start to notice some of the crayon coming out.
Wash the clothing to remove any leftover WD-40 or crayon residue using the heavy soil setting. Again, you may wish to add whatever type of bleach is safe for the clothing to the wash to help further break down the stain.
If none of the methods above seem to be working, one other thing you can try is to iron over the stain to re-melt the wax. However, you have to do this carefully to avoid spreading the stain. Plus, not all clothing can be ironed, so check the care tag to make sure it is safe before using this method.
First, plug the iron in and turn it whatever heat setting is safe for the clothing (again, check the care tag). Place the stained area between two paper towels or an old rag. This is necessary so that the melted wax has something to stick to other than the clothing, so you want something you can just throw away afterward.
Iron over the stain and as you do so, and the wax will re-melt and transfer to the paper towels or rag instead of spreading further on the clothing. Lift the towel every so often to make sure the wax is sticking and you may have to reposition the towel so that the wax sticks to a clean area.
After you’ve removed as much of the stain as you can, go back to the above methods of using dish soap or WD-40 if you need to remove more of it. Or, if you feel like most of the stain has been removed, you can wash the clothing using the heavy soil setting.
6. Pre-Treatment Stain Remover
No matter which of the above methods you use, it’s a good idea to apply a pre-treatment stain remover to the stain before washing. The stain remover will help further break down the stain to ensure that more of it gets removed. But each stain remover is different as far as how you apply them and how you have to let it sit, so follow the directions on the packaging of whatever stain remover you have.
7. Wash and Dry the Clothes
After you’ve removed as much of the stain as possible with pre-treatment methods, wash the clothing using the heavy soil setting. The heavy soil setting is designed for extra dirty items with stains that are more difficult to remove, so it washes them more thoroughly than regular cycles.
As I mentioned, you can add oxygen or chlorine bleach to the wash depending on which one is safe for the clothing if you wish. This is totally up to you, but it’s a good idea to do so if any pigment remains from the crayon.
After washing the clothing, make sure the stain has been removed before putting the clothing in the dryer. The heat from the dryer can cause it to re-set. If the stain hasn’t been removed as much as you would like, you can repeat the methods above. But if the stain still isn’t coming out, then you may just not be able to get it out completely.
8. Check and Clean the Washer/Dryer
If melted crayon got on your clothes as a result of it being in your pocket and then getting washed, you may also want to check and clean the washer and dryer to make sure there is crayon residue in there. The residue can stain your clothing again or get on other clothing if it isn’t cleaned. Check the washer and dryer after washing crayon-stained clothes for the same reason.
If there is crayon residue in either machine, wiping down the washer and dryer drum with WD-40 is the most effective way to get the residue out. Just spray a rag with WD-40 and wipe anywhere that you see residue.
Then, wipe the drum again with a damp, soapy rag to remove the WD-40. Then, rinse the area with a cloth dampened with only water to remove the soap. If you want to be sure that the washer and dryer are clean, test it by washing and drying a few old towels that you don’t mind getting stained, just in case.
Can You Get Crayon Out of Clothes That Went Through the Dryer?
Getting crayon out of clothes that went through the dryer will be harder. The heat from the dryer can cause the stain to set or even spread due to the wax getting re-melted. With that being said, you may still be able to remove it, but you’ll likely have to use all of the methods above, maybe even more than once. Even then, you still may not be able to get all of the crayon stain out, depending on how long it’s been there and how big it is.
If you suspect the dryer is how melted crayon got on your clothes in the first place, you may have to clean the dryer out as well to make sure that melted crayon doesn’t get on your other clothes. Check any pockets also to make sure that the crayon isn’t still there/
How to Remove Melted Crayon From Upholstery and Carpet
Sometimes melted crayon can get on your clothes from furniture, upholstery or carpet, even in your car. If this is how the crayon got onto your clothes, you’ll want to remove it from these surfaces as well.
Try using ice first to chill the stain, especially on carpets. Then scrape as much of the melted crayon off as you can. Afterward, the best way to get melted crayon out of upholstery or carpet is with dry-cleaning solvent or WD-40.
Which one you use is up to you as they can both be effective. However, using-dry cleaning solvent is a bit easier because all you have to do is apply it to the stain and use a sponge to blot it until it disappears. If you use WD-40, use it the same way as mentioned above. Spray it on the stain and let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse the area with dish soap and water.
Melted crayons on your clothes can be tough to remove, but they aren’t permanent in most cases. You may have to use several methods to break down the stain and figure out how the crayon got on your clothes in the first place and clean those areas too.