How to Clean Up Kid Messes

From Play-Doh to paint, how to get that stain out, pronto!

kid messes
If that pasta lands on the floor, you are in trouble! But kid messes don't have to be hard to clean up if you use our tips.. Allen Donikowski

Got kids? If you do, you most likely "got stains" as well. Lots and lots of stains. From juice (hopefully not grape!) to crayons, to Play Doh to markers, kids can make lots of messes. The trick is, knowing how to clean up each mess quickly, so you don't have permanent stain.

Here are seven of the most common kid messes and how to clean them up:

  1. Play-Doh: Great for creativity, not so great for carpets. To remove Play-Doh from the carpet, you'll need to wait for it to dry. Once it is, loosen it with a stiff brush, then vacuum it up. Repeat as necessary. If there is dye left behind, use rubbing alcohol and a clean white cloth and blot the stain until it is gone (test an unseen portion of the carpet first!). 
  1. Urine: Whether your child had a middle-of-the-night accident, or just an accident period, potty stains are very common during the preschool years. To get rid of stains and smells, blot up as much of the wet parts as you can. Then use one part dishwashing detergent to two parts water. Scrub with a clean cloth and let dry. If that isn't strong enough, try a mixture of hydrogen peroxide (one cup) and baking soda (three tablespoons). Mix in a spray bottle with dish detergent and spray onto the stain. Let it sit for about and hour. Blot dry.
  2.  Juice: When juice spills on a tile or laminate surface, it isn't so bad. Just wash away with water. But when it spills on a carpet, or shirt, you want to make sure you get it out so it doesn't stain. First blot up as much of the liquid as you can. Then using cold water, dish detergent and a rag or towel, keep rubbing and blotting at the juice until it is gone.
  1. Glitter: So shiny, sparkly, and fun! Until an art project leaves a never-ending amount on your table, and your floor, and your shirt, and your hair . . . you get the idea (always put a protective covering on all surfaces before you start arts and crafts projects!). To remove glitter from just about anything, try a lint roller. Don't have one handy? Try duct tape wrapped around your hand.
  1.  Markers: Did your preschooler color the baby? That happens a lot more often than you would think? To get markers off of skin, use baby oil or vaseline. Rub until the stain is gone. 
  2.  Sticker glue: Stickers are great for art projects for little ones because there are so many different kids available, and they are easy to use. Unfortunately, they also, well stick, to everything -- not just the art project your preschooler is creating! To remove sticker glue stains, start off with a hair dryer. Wipe away with a cloth and water if needed when done. 
  3. Crayons on walls: So you've got a budding artist! Too bad it's on the living room wall and not a piece of construction paper. To remove crayon marks from your painted walls, you can try a few different home remedies, including mayonnaise, toothpaste, and essential lemon oil. Apply each with a damp cloth, rub away, and then wipe clean. Got crayon stains in other places? Read this.

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