What is it about nice clean walls that makes children want to draw all over them? It seems like no matter how many sheets of paper or coloring books are offered, some amount of crayon always makes it’s way on to the wall. Even though we cherish every piece of art created by our little ones, we could all do without the drawings that dirty our walls. Whether it is in their bedroom, a playroom or your living room, the picture will be cute for the first day or so, but after that, you will be searching for some way to remove it. This type of mess can be a total disaster, and many people find it hard to clean because they either go about using the wrong method, or they just lack adequate tools. Luckily this is one of those chores that seems harder than it really is, and can be cleaned easily with the right supplies, and a simple to follow method.
Because a crayon is basically just colored wax, it will not stain wall surfaces so much as it will just coat them. This is good news for you because it will make it easier to take off. Other drawing implements like markers and pastels will be much harder to remove, and despite how thick and colorful the marks are, you can take crayon off the wall in a couple easy steps. There are traditional methods and home remedies available if you search around, and some of those can produce good results. Others will be less effective, and some just sound silly. Of the regular methods that do work, they are comparatively more expensive that the quick and easy method we will outline below, and in some cases the results will not even be as good, and it will probably take more time and effort if the results end up similar. So take a look at some of these traditional methods for erasing children;s drawings form your walls, and then keep reading to learn how to do it quicker, easier and for less money.
When tackling a job like this, it is important to keep in mind the specific surface you are trying to clean. Walls come in many flavors, and you will treat each surface a little bit differently. Most of us will be washing regular, white painted walls, and thankfully that is the easiest, and least worrisome to work with. Colored paint or wall paper will offer some additional challenges, but for the most part, you just want to make sure the method or tool you are using will not hurt the surface you are cleaning. Some of the traditional techniques will take away color, or ruin wall papered surfaces. Our simply good method is not risky on any surface, so it involves less thinking and preparation, but when trying some of the home remedies and old-school methods, you will need to be a little more careful.
Traditional Ways To Remove Crayon From a Wall
- As most of us already know this lubricant has many uses beyond just stopping squeaks. Apparently cleaning crayon marks is one of them because it is widely recommended as an easy way to complete the task. This is most likely due to the oily substance lubricating the wax while it breaks it apart. If you get to it quickly, it should allow you to slip it right off. This method may work well for small spots, but doing a large area will probably just make for a big mess. WD40 goes on as a spray, and the oil left behind will give you a new mess to clean. Unless you get the residue off afterward, you will still have a dirty wall, it will just be dirty in a different way. For older stains, this method will probably be closer to useless, but on new artwork, it may just do the trick. You will have best results if you stick to using this on white or colored walls, because papered surfaces will be problematic due to the absorption that will occur.
- Lots of people like these for a job like this, and they should be able to do fine in many cases. For wall paper or colored walls, these may either scratch up the finish, remove color, or ruin the paper, so be careful if you have surfaces like this. For white walls, they should work pretty good, but if the wall has a shiny or glossy finish, it will probably dull it in the area you are cleaning, or leave teeny tiny scratches. As you use a sponge like this, they basically disintegrate as you wipe, so if you are doing a large area you will probably go through several sponges. For smaller areas, you may like it better. As you clean painted surfaces with a tool like this, even on white walls, you will probably take off some of the paint as you wash so be careful to just remove the crayon. For anything other than a run of the mill white wall, you should test a small area first before going at the whole job. This method is probably the most effective of the traditional methods we will list here, but it can get pretty expensive when you start looking at the cost. You are guaranteed to wear the sponge down, so you may need a number of them for this one job alone. Once used, these need to be replaced, and most people end up wasting at least part of it when they finally toss out the dirty nub that is left over. Also this tool lacks in versatility because you will need to be careful about what you use it on.
- This one can be effective as well, but you better hope that the crayon coated wall is close to an outlet, otherwise you will need to get an extension cord. Because the crayon marks are mostly made of wax, you can heat them up to make them easier to wipe away. Turn on the blow dryer and direct hot air at the stains to soften up the marks. Once the crayon begins to sort of liquefy, you will be able to wipe most of it away. In almost every case, this will not remove all of the color. You will still have faint coloration left on the wall, so you will need to clean that with something else. It will be way easier at this point, but keep in mind, that this method will require a two step approach, and depending upon what you try to use to take off the remaining color, you could be right back where you started – with a stain that you don’t know how to remove. In most cases, it will only take something simple to clean the remaining marks, but this is not guaranteed. The good news is that this method is pretty safe for any wall surface.
- Not one of those pink kind, but one of the squishy gray ones. This method is safe for any wall, but only really good for small areas. If you have expensive wall paper, you may want to try this one because it is hard to ruin a surface with this technique. If you press down directly, or use small circular, or up and down motions, this type of eraser will absorb and lift the crayon marks. Once most of it is removed, you can use a more vigorous method to get rid of the rest. If you start of by rubbing like crazy, you will just spread and smear the color, and you run the risk of doing this no matter how fast you work, so be careful as you proceed. This technique will not always produce perfect results, and similar to the blow dryer method, you will usually get left over color that remains. This will need to be cleaned using something else, but it should be much easier after you remove the bulk of the color, using the eraser.
- You can’t use the colorful blue gel kind, but regular, old-school style paste does work well for cleaning. It is the mild abrasives in the paste that make it work well for scrubbing free stains. This is how it is able to remove crayon from the wall. Back in the day, more of us had this stuff on hand, but today, it is harder to find. If you went about trying to clean with the paste that most of us have in our bathrooms currently, it would not work, and would be more likely to make things worse. If you do have some, or you want to make a special trip to the store, this can be a good method to try, using stuff around your home. You can actually use an old toothbrush as your tool, and then just take a small amount of paste directly to the crayon. Some quick scrubbing should loosen and remove it. You will then want to wipe the area clean with a damp cloth to remove any residue that remains. This method is pretty safe for any surface, and the results can be decent with the correct combination of practice and effort.
- This stuff is a good natural cleaner, but not really the best for this job. Because it is highly effective for other jobs around the home, it is often recommended for this one. It does not have the right power to make the job easy, but it could be a good way to clean up after some of the other methods above when they don’t produce perfect results, or leave some color or oily stains behind. The method is pretty simple, just spray it on, or apply to a cloth and wipe. You can use it on most surfaces without worry, so you may want to give it a shot before trying something more drastic.
Baby oil, hand lotion, mayonnaise, etc.
- Greasy and oily substances are often recommended as solutions to this problem. Much like the wd40 method above, they don’t work that well, and even if they do produce some results, you will be left cleaning up the residue afterward. Grease an oil stains are some of the most difficult to clean, so you may end up with a job that is even harder than the one you started with.
Hairspray, rubbing alcohol, turpentine, lighter fluid
- These types of substances are also often recommended as home remedies for removing crayon from painted walls. It seems a little overkill to use something so hard core to clean a simple job like crayon. Add to that the level of effectiveness where these particular substances are concerned, and they fall to the bottom of the list. You may have good results if you experiment with some of these, but they are all pretty risky as far as possibility of ruining the surface goes. You may end up taking off unwanted color from painted walls, or permanently ruining any papered surfaces. They all do have the perceived ability to break apart the waxy residue that is marking your wall, but try one of the other methods above before resorting to one of these.
The Simply Good Method For Removing Crayon
Crayon on any surface, but especially on walls, is rather easy to remove. This is another job that Quick’n Brite is especially good at, but you may not even need it. If you have the right microfiber Scrubbing Cloth, that may be the only thing you need. If you have a cloth, but it is not an ideal quality or weave, then adding some Quick N Brite will make the job easy. This stuff will remove candle wax from clothes and carpeting, so a little crayon drawing on a hard surface is simple. Because of how it works, it is uniquely suited to this task. Quick’n Brite is an all natural enzyme cleaner that works great on hundreds of jobs. Get it to clean the crayon off your wall, but then keep it on hand to obliterate other stains too. It will break apart the waxy build-up that is the crayon and lift it off the surface so that you can easily wipe it away. Because it is all natural, and doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals, it is totally safe around children and pets, and won’t ever discolor or otherwise ruin any surface you apply it to. You can use it on paint or paper, and it doesn’t matter if it is white, blue, pink or anything else. This great cleaner will completely remove all signs of the crayon quickly and easily. You won’t have to go over the area twice, and you won’t need to use a lot of cleaner to get good results.
How to do it:
Gather your supplies. For marks that were just made, lighter pressure drawings, or small areas of color, you may only need a good Scrubbing Cloth. A microfiber cloth like this will give you incredible scrubbing power without running any risk to the surface you are wiping. It will skim the wall without scratching, and will lift and remove the crayon. It will work in much the same way as an eraser sponge, but it will never wear out, and you can also use it on other surfaces, not just white ones. A cloth like this can be used over and over again, and it is safe for paint or paper.
For tougher jobs, you will need some Quick’n Brite (best to use a heavy solution which is 3tbs into a quart spray bottle of water. You could also use the paste or liquid full strength) Use this in addition to your scrubbing cloth for stubborn color, large areas, or anything that will not come off with just the cloth alone. If you are using Quick N Brite, the scrubbing cloth will not be required, but it could cut the time it takes in half. For an easier time you will want to use some kind of microfiber with the cleaner, but even a regular terry cotton towel will work just fine. A microfiber cloth is a powerful tool all by itself, and it will remove smaller build-up like fingerprints, small drawings and smudges from walls all by itself. When combined with the Quick’n Brite they offer unmatched cleaning ability. You will find that a similar technique, and these two tools will be perfect for cleaning all over your home. Just spray and wipe away.
Remove light marks (no Quick n Brite)
For quick cleanup, you can use a good cloth all by itself. If it seems hard to do, or if the mark does not come off right away, just skip to the method below. Many things can be removed from walls with just the cloth alone, but some stuff will be more stubborn depending upon age, how it got there and the exact surface it is on. All microfiber is not created equal, so you will need to have the right cloth for this method to work. If you do have the correct type and quality, it will offer a safe and effective way to scrub your wall clean.
- Grab your scrubbing cloth and get it damp.
- Scrub in an up and down or small circular motion.
- Once all marks are loosened, wipe entire wall clean.
Remove Tough Stains and Older Drawings
- Wet your microfiber or other cloth and then wring until it is just damp. Using warm water can actually make the cleaner work better, so wet with hot or warm water, then wring out until the cloth is no longer dripping. Because microfiber can clean so well all by itself, using one can also make the job easier, but it would not be required, and when using this method, the QnB is really doing the work. If you do not have a microfiber cloth, you could also use a regular washcloth or towel made from cotton.
- Apply the Quick’n Brite to the affected areas of your walls. The easiest way is in a spray bottle. Just spray liberally all over. If you don’t want to get the area wet, spray onto the cloth, or use the paste without diluting. To use straight paste, just dip your cloth into it to take out a small amount. Once on the cloth, just wipe on to apply.
- Once it has been applied to the surface, let the cleaner sit for a few minutes to give it time to work. While it sits, it will be breaking down the waxy crayon, and then floating it off the wall’s surface thanks to the natural surfactant involved. After just a couple of minutes, the crayon that was glued to your wall will now be just loosely floating there. This means that it is ready to remove.
- Once the cleaner has had time to work, just come back and wipe clean with your microfiber cloth. You can also wipe with a dry terry cloth towel or some other sort of rag. Every last spec of the crayon will come off, and your wall will be left clean and mark free.
That’s all there is to it. There is no scrubbing or hard work involved. This natural cleaner is highly effective, but not at all risky. It will quickly break down the waxy color and make it simple to wipe away. Those marks that looked like they were stuck on there for life, will now be a fond memory. Because it is a concentrated cleaner, it is also a very cheap way to go as well. Any cloth you use can be washed and reused, and you will only need a tiny amount of Quick n Brite to do the cleaning. Because it is not a specific use cleaner, you can keep it on hand to spot clean your carpet, take stains out of clothing and more. It is highly versatile, and there are not side effects or down sides to using it for this job. Whether you use just a cloth, or opt for the combo method, you will be able to get the area clean with ease, and the job will be done completely with a single application. There will be no faint color left behind, and your wall will be left looking like it did before the kids even got there.
To prevent further damage to your precious walls you might try some preventative measures also. Hang large sheets of paper or newsprint on the walls where your children like to draw the most. You could offer some sort of reward for drawing here instead of the rest of the house. It probably won’t be nearly as appealing as an actual wall that mom or dad would have to clean, but it is worth a shot.