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How to Remove Hair Dye From Your Sink and Bathtub

So, you decided to do an at-home hair dye job. Unfortunately for you, it wasn’t only your hair you ended up coloring, but the sink and/or the bathtub too!

What a huge mess. One of the first rules before opening that hair coloring box is to prepare your workspace. But if the hair dye mess is already there staining your sink and bathtub, it’s time to start cleaning up.

Removing hair dye from porcelain surfaces requires more than a simple wipe and rub. Thankfully, we’ve got a few tips and tricks on how to get hair dye off the sink and bathtub.

hair dye
Source: Living Magazine

Can Hair Dye Stain a Porcelain Sink and Bathtub?

Dyeing your hair by yourself can be a messy job, and the dye will stain anything it comes into contact with — including your sink and bathtub.

Thankfully, there’s no reason to fret if you made a mess after a DIY hair dye job. With the right method, semi-permanent hair color stains can be easily removed, although some are harder to remove than others.

The proper method of cleaning depends on the type of hair dye you use, as some colors are more difficult to take off than others. You may also have a harder time removing the dye if you leave it on the surface for too long.

How to Remove Hair Dye from a Sink 

So, can you remove hair dye from the porcelain sink? Absolutely, and there are a few easy and effective ways to do so. Don’t be afraid to combine one or two of the options below to keep your sink sparkling clean after a messy at-home hair coloring session.

Clean Hair Dye from Sink with Vinegar and Baking Soda

Your trusty homemade cleaning solution, a mixture of baking soda and white vinegar, can do wonders in removing hair dye spots and streaks from the porcelain sink.

Vinegar alone is an age-old, tried and true cleaning substance, and adding baking soda only boosts its effectiveness. Baking soda and vinegar, when combined, will help activate the dye components, breaking it down, so it’s easier to wipe it with a cloth or wash it away with water.

What to Do: 

Rub the paste (vinegar + baking soda) on the dye stain gently using a sponge or clean towel, then rinse with water. If there are a lot of stains, try filling the sink with hot water, then pour the baking soda and vinegar solution onto the stain. Leave it for 10 to 15 minutes to allow the fizz to remove the hair dye stains, then drain the water.

Use Dish Soap

For hair dye stains that haven’t been sitting on the porcelain surface for very long, regular dishwashing soap can help erase the stain.

What to Do:

Apply dish soap to the stain thoroughly and use the non-abrasive side of the sponge to scrub the stained area. This may take some scrubbing, but the stain will fade eventually.

Use Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is an effective disinfectant, but it’s also super handy for when a bathroom hair-dye session gets a little messy. This solution works best for light hair dye colors. If you used a black dye, alcohol will lighten the stain but won’t remove it completely. It’s best to pair this method with other cleaning hacks on this list.

What to Do:

Start by wiping the sink dry of any water using a cleaning towel, then dip the end of the towel or sponge in the rubbing alcohol. Apply the damp cloth with alcohol to the stains.

Use Nail Polish Remover

Nail polish remover is another trusty friend for a messy hair-coloring session. Acetone, the active ingredient in nail polish removers, works like magic in removing hair dye marks from most surfaces.

But make sure you are not using a nail polish remover that contains any dye, or it might stain your sink even more.

What to Do: 

Begin with wiping the sink with a towel, and once dry, dip the end of the towel in the nail polish remover. Apply the damp towel with nail polish remover on stains.

Use Washing Up Liquid

Washing up liquid is a go-to cleaning solution to remove stains from a kitchen counter that can also be used with bathroom sinks. While food dye and hair dye are different things, this liquid cleaner helps remove any type of colored mark or stain without being harsh on the porcelain sink surface.

What to Do: 

Pour a considerable amount of the washing-up liquid on the sink and lather it up on the stained areas. Let the lather sit for five to ten minutes, then rinse it with water. Darker dye stains in the sink will most likely not loosen up after the first application, but you can repeat the process two to three times to remove dye marks completely.

If All Else Fail, Use Bleach 

It’s not advisable to use bleach, as it may be a bit too harsh and can damage the coating of your porcelain sink. However, bleach is well recognized as a cleaning agent, especially for removing stains and whitening surfaces.

If you have to use bleach to get rid of hair dye stains, do so safely.

What to Do: 

Dilute the bleach with water and apply it to the stained portion of the sink. Let it sit there for around 10 minutes, then rinse it with water. But remember to wear protective gear like rubber gloves when handling the bleach solution to avoid skin irritation. Wearing a mask and opening the windows will also help protect you from any toxic fumes.

How to Remove Hair Dye from Your Bathtub

No matter how careful you are, dyeing your hair in the bathroom can still be messy. Because of this, it’s not uncommon for dye stains to end up in your bathtub. But thankfully, you can remove those unwanted dye spots and streaks using the right method, whether you have a porcelain, cast-iron, acrylic, or fiberglass bathtub.

Clean Hair Dye from Acrylic and Fiberglass Tubs

There are four hair dye stain removal methods for your fiberglass and acrylic bathtub.

  1. Pour baking soda on a damp, clean cloth, rub it in stained areas to erase the dye, and then rinse with water.

  1. Create a paste by combining borax and water and use it to scrub the stained area clean.

  1. Spray a solution made of ¼ cup bleach and 1-quart water on the stain and leave it for several minutes until the stain fades, then rinse.

  1. Fill the bathtub with hot water and add four to five denture cleaner tablets. Let it sit in the tub overnight, then drain and wipe the surface clean in the morning.

Clean Hair Dye from Cast-Iron and Porcelain Tubs

The four methods to clean fiberglass and acrylic tubs above are also effective in cleaning hair dye stains from your cast-iron and porcelain tub, plus these two options:

  1. Pour powdered cleanser in a wet sponge and use it to scrub off the stains from the surface, rinse, and wipe with a clean cloth.

  1. Make a fizzy paste with two crushed denture cleaning tablets and a couple of drops of water, then rub it to the dye stains. Let the paste dry for at least 10 minutes, then wipe clean using a cloth soaked in lukewarm water.

How to Remove Red Hair Dye from Porcelain

Red hair dye stains are the most challenging to remove from porcelain sinks and bathtubs. You can lighten the dye marks and streaks using the methods above, but they might not completely erase the stain.

But if you have hair bleach handy, the kind that removes the color from your hair, applying it to the red dye stain on the sink will remove any unintentional marks.

Avoid using cleaners that are abrasive and will scratch and cause irreparable damage to the sink and tub surface, as these will attract more stains and dirt in the future.

Mandy Phillips

As a frequent contributor to top US magazines and publications in the home improvement niche, Mandy has been known for sharing her expertise on how to clean, organize, and decorate bathrooms.

Additionally, Mandy has immense experience offering lifestyle tips and tricks to her readers.

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At Loo Academy, our mission is to offer trusted advice for everything related to bathrooms (design ideas, plumbing advice, showering & bathing tips, remodeling guides, and more) — a place where we all spend a great deal of time.

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