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How to Get Lipstick Out of Car Upholstery?

How to Get Lipstick Out of Car Upholstery?

The sticky lipstick residues come on car upholstery which gives them a bad appearance, and their color also comes on your cloth. Many female drivers face this issue because they keep them in their bags while at work or events.

How to Get Lipstick Out of Car Upholstery? You can get lipstick out of car upholstery using rubbing alcohol, a hair dryer, a toothbrush, and a mixture of warm water with soap and dishwashing detergent. It is also good to try the butter knife for scrapping, a tweezer to collect the chunks, and a vacuum cleaner. You can also use cotton pads, wet wipes, baking soda powder, hair sprays, and ammonia-based cleaners to remove lipstick.

Using makeup while driving is risky because its stains also come on your clothes. You should keep the wet wipes and a dry towel with you to clean the upholstery in emergencies.

What are the methods to get lipstick out of car upholstery?

There are different methods to get rid of them, but it depends on the type of the upholstered fabric. The leather, vinyl, and nylon are waterproof covers, and you can clean them easily.

Use of rubbing alcohol

The rubbing alcohol contains isopropyl alcohol, which helps remove the oil-based and colored stains of the lipsticks from car seats.

You cannot directly apply it to the fabric because it can cause damaging effects. The direct application can also cause fading of color from that particular area.

You need a soft cloth or cotton swabs for the application procedure. Spray the alcohol on the cotton swab and towel and thoroughly wet it.

Put this damp cotton pad on the affected area so alcohol can absorb the oil-based liquids from the fabric material.

Slowly rub the stained area to clear off marks. Then, wipe it off with a dry cloth to remove the moisture from the upholstery.

Hair dryer

The hair dryer is best for removing dry lipstick from the vehicle’s upholstery. It becomes dry and gets hard when you do not clean them quickly.

Remove it quickly before it hardens and sticks. You have to adjust the heat of the hair dryer before using it.

The use of excessive heat can cause shrinkage of fabric. Turn on the setting of the hair dryers to the mild heat and set its nozzle on the hard layer.

The warm air helps melt this hard layer stuck on the seats. However, you also need to apply the degreaser after melting to remove its color.

The degreaser or any cleaning detergent helps clean residues and their specific shade.

Use Toothbrush

The use of hard bristles toothbrush is beneficial for scraping off the hard layer of lipstick from the upholstery of the vehicle.

Many of these covers are made up of nylon, vinyl, and leather material. The makeup particles stick to these fabrics and are difficult to remove.

Scraping with a toothbrush is safe because it cannot produce any scratches on its surface. Gently move the brush on the hard layer and apply less pressure to avoid scratches and color fading.

The color can also appear when you harshly move the brush on the seats. Clean it with a dry cloth to remove the remaining small residues.

Warm water and soap

The warm water is helpful to degrease the wax and oil-based ingredients that are present in it.Boil the water and add the liquid soap in it and mix it well with a stirrer. Then, add this into a spray bottle and spray the liquid mixture on the affected area.

Let it sit for some minutes to erode the deeply penetrated pigmented ingredients. Then, take a damp cloth and rub the surface well.

Wipe off the soapy mixture with a cloth that is dampened with water.

Try dish soap

You can try dish soap mixed with water to clean makeup residues. In addition, ammonia-based liquid cleaners are also available on the market.

Mix the dishwashing detergent in one cup of water and add it to the upholstery. Brush the area with a soft-bristled toothbrush to remove the oily residues.

It is safe to use dish soap because of its mild chemical effect.


Hairsprays contain alcohol or isopropyl alcohol as their primary ingredient. The alcohol sprays help clean the sticky residues of lipsticks.

Spray the upholstery of the vehicles with hair sprays and leave it for 2 to 3 minutes. You must completely clear the hairsprays because their long-term exposure can cause the color to fade.

Remove the hairsprays and the sticky color of makeup with wet wipes. Repeat the procedure 2 to 3 times to completely clean the surface.

You can also use the vacuum cleaner because pressurized air helps suck small particles.

Use tweezers

Tweezer can act as the grabbing material, and you can remove the tiny chunks or residues. Sometimes the lipstick gets melted and broken due to extreme temperature conditions and packing issues.

It comes on the upholstery of the cars when you open it for use. The chunks are not removable with hands because they can spread around the whole surface.

Moreover, it can also stick with the fabric when you try to remove them with your hand. So instead, use the tweezer to pick them up and put them in plastic bags.

Scrap with a butter knife

The dull side of the butter knife is beneficial for scraping off the dry residues of makeup. It is better to use the dull side because it cannot fade the color and produce any lines on the leather material.

Start the scrapping from the middle side because it can protect the residues from spreading on the sides.

You also have to clear the residues from the seats as soon as possible because it can stick again.

Apply toothpaste

Toothpaste contains a mild abrasive material that is helpful to get rid of the makeup and its stains from the fabric materials.

It can also remove the waxes and the greasers that are present in makeup as a moisturizer. Next, apply the toothpaste to the stained area and rub it with a damp cloth.

Rinse the toothpaste with fresh water because it can erode the original color if it stays there for a longer time.

Baking soda

Baking soda is an abrasive material, and it is useful to get rid of waxy and oil-based spots. The lipstick contains both of these materials that can cause an issue.

Sprinkle one tablespoon of baking soda powder on the stained part and add water to it. Use a cloth in a circular motion and then wipe it off.

It is also necessary to rinse it in water because baking soda is abrasive material and dulls the original shine and color.

Cotton pads and wet wipes

The cotton pads dipped with alcohol are available on the market, and you can directly use them to remove makeup from the fabric surface.

Remove the cotton pad from the packet and rub it on the affected area. Then, you can use the 3 to 4 cotton pads to completely clean the pigmentation.

Wet wipes are also beneficial to fix this issue.

Why are lipstick stains challenging to remove from car upholstery?

All of the makeup stains, including lipsticks, are difficult to remove from the seats of the vehicles. These are oil-based, which penetrates its internal layer and causes issues.

In addition, it also contains the pigment to give them a specific color. However, the pigmentation can also spread on the fabric, making it challenging for people to remove this color.

You can easily clean them from the upholstered leather seats because of their hard texture and durability.

In addition, the color pigmentation cannot spread or penetrate the nylon and leather material because of their waterproof potential.

It contains dyes and waxes that can make the surface greasy.

Most of them are soft and made up of fabric material. However, removing fabric material is difficult and time-consuming because you need special detergents.

Why are lipstick stains on my car upholstery?

It can come on the upholstery when your little girls love to take their makeup kit with them during road trips.

Many girls want to keep them in their cars to make them fresh during trips before reaching the destination.

The issue comes when you apply them during driving. The bumps from the roads and driving conditions disturbs your hand during the application, and it comes in contact with the car seats.

You should stop at the side and do your makeup before reaching the selected points. Avoid using them during driving because it can ruin the seats and make them look awkward and funny.

How to protect car upholstery from makeup stains?

You can protect them from lipstick spots by using seat covers. These are beneficial to use because of their easy cleaning process.

Moreover, you can also change them when they get dirty and bad. In addition, many people also use the seat mat to cover the bottom portion from all types of stains.

The bottom spots are more harmful because they can also come on your clothes when sitting on the seats.

What do people say about it?

I surveyed about 629 female car users in America to know about the methods they prefer to use for the removal of makeup stains.

Out of 629 females, 421 (66%) said they use alcohol-based cotton pads and wet wipes because these are quick processes, and you can keep them in your vehicle.

107 (18%) people said they collect chunks of lipstick with tweezers to prevent their oil, wax, or pigment penetration in the upholstery.

The remaining 101 (16%) girls said it is best to scrap the hard layer with a butter knife or toothbrush and later wipe off the surface with a wet towel.

It is better to use mild abrasive detergents to clean the fabric’s oil stains and waxy materials.

One of the females mentioned: “I use the mixture of baking soda and water because it is abrasive and is helpful to degrease the surface thoroughly.”

The other girl said: “I always use the butter knife and tweezer to collect the small makeup particles because it takes less than 5 minutes to get lipstick out of car upholstery.”

The lipsticks contain specific pigments to give them color. The color comes on the fabric, and getting rid of this color spot is challenging.

The third person said: “I prefer rubbing alcohol because it can also clear the spots on the seat covers due to their pigmented color.”

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