Nail polish removal in Newmarket


I received a notification from face book, this isn’t that unusual to be honest. This was one of the ones that start so and so has tagged you in a post.

I had been tagged by one of my clients, who affectionately refers to me as her carpet super hero, mainly due to the aftermath of one of her tea parties. Or to be more accurate after one of her friends spills tea on her white, Yes white I kid you not, wool carpet.

So after all of the years of working for her she has learnt “Do not put, or use anything on the mark” (the reason being that it can lock the stain in making removal harder if not impossible).
I clicked on the notification and sure enough I had been tagged in a request…

“Can anyone recommend a company to remove nail polish from my carpet” sure enough I had been recommended by several people, but amongst the recommendations were a whole string of suggestions ranging from the bazaar to the downright dangerous and plain daft.

But I understand only too well, something happens and you go into fight or fright mode, adrenaline runs thick and fast through your veins as panic sets in. This was the scenario which I came across when I offered to help Mrs Jones* not real name.

Mrs Jones had reached up to the top of her wardrobe, this is where she kept her selection of nail polish and other related products. Unfortunately the lid of the box was not secure and even more unfortunately a bottle of purple nail polish tumbled out of the box and despite her best frantic efforts the bottle hit the carpet.

The lid came off allowing a large thick blob to form in one area whilst the brush span away to cause as much damage as possible (see below).

Luckily Mrs Jones ignored the trusty advice given mainly because she was out of baking soda and WD40. Instead she called me and I was now faced with removing dried nail polish, which is oil based from a polypropylene carpet, which is also oil based.

The reason this is relevant is that like attracts like so for example if it had been a natural based product that had been spilled then it becomes easier to remove. Like attracts and holds onto like.

So grease from wool is easier to remove than grease from a synthetic pile, either way ever the optimist I set my truck mounted cleaning system up and ran the hoses up to the bedroom. You never know sometimes you get lucky and the powerful rinsing action and suction sometimes can lift the mark out… It didn’t.

I have several products at my disposal and with soft brushes and a plastic spatula. The first thing I tried was an eco-pog, P.O.G stands for paint oil grease remover and the eco bit is because it is derived from plant extracts and is bio-degradable.

Applying it indirectly via a white terry towel I could see I was getting some transfer, but not enough so I moved onto my second chemical. This is solvent based and forms a gel once applied. The gel stays in one place and solidifies which means you leave it and hopefully scrape the offending product, nail varnish in this case, up and out.

Whilst getting some improvement and working some of the purple stuff out of the carpet it still wasn’t getting deep down and still showing huge purple blobs…

All the time I was rinsing and cleaning but I was also very aware of potential damage, my job as a specialist cleaner is to get the best possible results in the safest way possible. It is no good dissolving the carpet to leave a big patch of distorted carpet fibre or worse a hole.

“There you go Mrs Jones the nail polish has gone… oh and so has the pile and sorry about the hole” that isn’t the professional way.

My next choice of chemical was a soft gel which I massaged into the carpet and I let it dwell for a short period. This time when I used the spatula to ease out the nail varnish it started to ooze out like cream from an éclair.

I spent a further half an hour or so repeating the same sequence… Apply product, dwell ease out with a plastic spatula then dab with a clean cloth then rinse.
Eventually the nail polish was removed and Mrs Jones was really pleased with the result which meant that I was really pleased with my work and everyone was happy.


If you should have the same issue with nail polish, the first thing to do is act quickly but do not panic, even though the adrenaline will be flowing, take a deep breath and think about what you can do. To be honest the chances are that you will need a professional to come in and help but you may have some success doing the following.

Disclaimer: The following procedure is not guaranteed to work and if not done in a cautious methodical way may damage your carpet, if this happens I am afraid I am not responsible for actions carried out by untrained people trying to clean nail varnish from carpet.
You will need the following, it is also really important to not let the nail polish dry.

1. Clean hand towel.
2. Plastic or bone spatula (improvise with a spoon)
3. Kitchen roll
4. Dry cleaning solution (surgical spirit)
5. Final rinsing solution ( 1 part white vinegar 4 parts water)
6. Small plastic spray bottle.
7. Weight (couple of thick books)

Step 1: Use a plastic spatula or some other blunt edged tool, to scrape any excess nail polish from the carpet.

Step 2: working from the outside of the stain towards the middle. Use the surgical spirit applied via the hand towel.

Step 3: The colour should transfer onto the towel, never rub but dab the spot and keep repeating until the stain has gone.

Step 4: over spray with the rinsing solution, be careful not to over wet, then place five or 6 pieces of kitchen roll over the top and weight them down with the books.

Step 5: Leave for a period of about 20 minutes then remove everything.

if the spot is still there repeat again or put a damp cloth over the top to prevent drying out and call Andrew on 01223 864335 if you are within an hour of Cambridge.

If you are from Newmarket or nearby, you may want to have a look at our Newmarket page here
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