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How to Get Acrylic Paint Out of Carpet

Derek Hales

Written By: Derek Hales

Updated on:

Carpet in any home comes with its own set of risks and rewards, but nearly no risk is as great as the threat of staining. And among stains, paint is one of the worst offenders.

Today’s 4-1-1 is going to walk you through how to get acrylic paint out of carpet.

How to get acrylic paint out of carpet

Acrylic paint is commonplace for hobby painters and kids alike, but it’s no play thing. A paint stain can ruin your carpet in a matter of minutes if you don’t know the proper technique or have the right tools to clean it.

Don’t be caught off guard if the time comes and you suddenly need to clean acrylic paint from carpet.

You can follow the steps below to quickly clean acrylic paint and restore your carpet.

Do you prefer a video explanation? See our video below:

YouTube video

What is the state of the paint?

If you’re caught the spill while it’s still wet, you’re in luck. Wet paint is much easier to clean than dried paint, but even dried paint can be removed.

How to Remove Wet Acrylic Paint from Carpet

How to get acrylic paint out of carpet - supplies

Method #1 Supplies (from left to right): paper towels, warm water, mild liquid soap, spray bottle

To clean up wet paint, you’ll need the following materials:

  • Paper towels
  • Warm water
  • Mild liquid soap
  • Spray bottle

Method #1: Mild Soap + Warm Water

Time needed: 10 minutes

How to remove acrylic paint (that’s still wet) from carpet

  1. Dry Blot the Stain

    Blot the stain with dry paper towels to clean up any excess wet paint sitting on top of the carpet.

  2. Spray the Stain

    Using a plastic spray bottle, mix 1 teaspoon of mild liquid soap for every cup of warm water. Shake to combine and spray directly on the stain.

  3. Wet Blot the Stain

    You can also dip a paper towel directly into the soapy solution and blot the stain to help clean it.

  4. Blot with Dry Paper Towels

    Blot with a dry paper towel until the stain is removed.

Still not clean?

If the soapy water solution doesn’t effectively clean the stain, you can also try a vinegar solution.

Method #2: White Vinegar + Cold Water

How To Get Acrylic Paint Out Of Carpet
Method #2 Supplies (from left to right): distilled while vinegar, warm water, sponge, cold water, spray bottle

For this method, here’s what you’ll need.

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Warm water
  • Sponge
  • Cold water
  • Spray bottle

Follow these basic steps:

  1. Using the same spray bottle approach, combine 1 part distilled white vinegar for every 10 parts of warm water. Shake to mix.
  2. Spray directly onto the stain and blot with a paper towel or sponge.
  3. Afterwards, use a sponge with cold water to blot the stain.
  4. Continue using these methods alternatively until the stain has been lifted.

Need an extra boost?

For extra difficult stains, consider renting a carpet cleaner or a steaming vacuum attachment.

Attaching a cleaning pad to the Twin Tanks steam mop is completed by placing the head on the back of the pad.

The warm water from the steamer or cleaning action from the carpet cleaner can help to apply some elbow grease for even difficult spots.

How to Get Rid of Dry Acrylic Paint Off Carpet

Cleaning dried paint from carpet is a little more challenging than cleaning wet paint, but it’s not impossible. You will need something that packs a little more of a punch than warm soapy water. You may need to go shopping for this.

How to get acrylic paint out of carpet - supplies
Methods #3-5 Supplies (from left to right): putty knife, needle-nose pliers, rubbing alcohol, dry cloth, glycerin, acetone

Here’s what you’ll need:

The Roomba i7+ comes with enough battery to clean right out of the box

Method #3: Rubbing Alcohol

  1. Use the putty knife and needle-nose pliers to remove dried pieces of paint from the carpet. Slowly work at the stain to flake away as much paint as you can. While dried paint isn’t impossible to remove, it helps to make the problem smaller by flaking away as much paint as you can, before activating the remaining paint.
  2. Soak a dry cloth in rubbing alcohol until it is fully saturated. Blot the stain as needed and let soak for 15-20 minutes.
  3. After the time has elapsed, use a dry cloth to blot the area and help soak up the rubbing alcohol.

Stain still remains?

No problem, let’s keep going.

Method #4: Glycerin

  1. Moisten another cloth with liquid glycerin and blot the stain. This solution can remain on the paint stain for a matter of minutes or a couple of hours.

Last ditch attempt? Let’s go.

Method #5: Acetone

  1. If the stain is still there, try blotting the area with acetone and let it sit for a few minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions

What home remedy will remove paint from a carpet?

One of the easiest ways to remove paint from a carpet is to blot the stain with dry paper towels and then apply a mixture of warm water and mild liquid soap. If it doesn’t work, apply a mixture of warm water and vinegar. Another option is to use rubbing alcohol, acetone, or concentrated glycerin. 

For all these methods, it’s important that you blot, not scrub, the stain. Scrubbing will drive the paint deeper into the carpet, making it harder to remove it. Consider using a carpet cleaner to get rid of stubborn stains. 

How does rubbing alcohol remove paint from a carpet?

Rubbing alcohol, or isopropyl alcohol, is a degreasing agent and can remove paint, blood, beer, butter, coffee, chocolate, and even ink stains. 

First, use a putty knife and needle-nose pliers to get dried paint out of the carpet. Next, blot the stain with a dry cloth soaked in rubbing alcohol. Wait for 15 to 20 minutes and then blot the area with a dry cloth.

Tips for How to Get Acrylic Paint Out of Carpet

Using the methods above, any stain by acrylic paint should eventually lift up, with a little elbow grease. Here are a coupe expert tips to help make your efforts a success.

How to get acrylic paint out of carpet

1. Blot, don’t scrub.

Blotting helps to lift the stain, scrubbing can force the paint into the carpet fibers and make it harder to clean.

2. Work your way from the outside.

Start blotting on the outside edge of the spill to help contain it and prevent yourself from spreading the spill to a larger area.

3. Use warm water.

Warm water, versus cold, helps to dissolve the acrylic paint and loosen it from the carpet fibers. Cold water helps to set it.

4. Vacuum steam it.

Use a streamer attachment for a vacuum (see our vacuum reviews here) to help loosen the stain as you work.

Dirt Devil Versa Steamer
Dirt Devil Versa Steamer

5. Ventilate the area.

As you’re working through cleaning the paint stain, you may be trying a number of different solutions. Be sure to ventilate the area and take regular breaks as needed.

Give time for the fumes to dissipate between each method before trying a new solution.

Summary: How to Remove Paint from Carpet

Following these tips above, you should be armed with all of the information you need to know how to get acrylic paint out of carpet. As a recap, here are the main methods listed again below.

Method 1: Warm water and mild soap

Mix 1 teaspoon mild soap + 1 cup warm water. Blot until clean.

Method 2: Warm water and distilled white vinegar

Mix 1 part distilled white vinegar with 10 parts warm water. Blot the stain. Alternate between blotting with vinegar mixture and with cool water. Alternate blotting until clean.

Method 3: Rubbing alcohol

Use concentrated isopropyl alcohol (aka: rubbing alcohol) to saturate the stain. Let soak for 15-20 minutes. Blot until clean.

Method 4: Glycerin

Use concentrated glycerin to saturate the stain. Let soak for 30 minutes up to a couple hours (as needed). Blot until clean.

Method 5: Acetone

Use concentrated acetone to saturate the stain. Let soak for 15-20 minutes. Blot until clean.

Note: Acetone has a very strong smell. Be sure to ventilate the area and use caution when using acetone in confined spaces.

About Derek Hales

Derek HalesDerek Hales is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of He has been featured in Fast Company, Reader's Digest, Business Insider,, She Knows, and other major publications. Derek has a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Kansas State University. Hales has been testing and reviewing products for the home since 2014.