6 Ways How to Get Fingernail Polish Out Of Wood Flooring And Furniture

Fingernail polish may be used to keep your fingernails looking beautiful, but there are unfortunate accidents that can happen during the application process.

For instance, if you’re sitting down on a piece of furniture as you’re applying the polish to your fingernails, there is a high chance of the polish dripping down onto the floor. Fingernail polish is very tough to remove because it is similar to adding paint to your furniture and floor. It’s even more challenging when you have wooden flooring as opposed to carpeted flooring.

Fortunately, there are ways in which you can remove fingernail polish from wood flooring and furniture. Let’s go over the top 6 ways to get fingernail polish out of wood flooring and furniture.

1) Learn About Your Wood

Wood flooring is not all the same. Birch, maple, and cherry wood floors have fewer pores than oak wood floors, for example. If you have wood flooring that is too porous, then it’ll be difficult to remove the polish color from it altogether. The worst-case scenario is you’ll need to replace your wood flooring or at least certain sections of it.

2) Apply Gentle Pressure

When you spill nail polish onto your furniture or floor, the chances are that you’ll notice it immediately. The best time to remove the nail polish is when it is still wet. You can use a clean cotton swab or cotton tissues to absorb the wet nail polish and apply pressure to the wet stained area.

A few minor swipes with the cotton material should remove the wet nail polish before it turns hard. Don’t be aggressive with your swipes or else your wood could become permanently damaged.

3) Rubbing Alcohol

The most popular recommendation is to use rubbing alcohol on the nail polish. This is more effective if the polish stains are not coming up by merely swiping them with your cotton swaps. But you will want to take some cotton balls and soak them in the rubbing alcohol.

Lay the soaked cotton balls over the stained area. Leave them idle for a couple of minutes and then slowly scrub the stain with the cotton balls. Depending on the number of pores, you’ll have to massage the balls into the wood several times before removing enough layers of the polish.

4) 0000-Grade Steel Wool

If you don’t want to use chemical solutions on your wood, then try using 0000-grade steel wool to remove the nail polish stain. You can still use a small amount of pressure to wipe away the polish. There is no need to scrub aggressively. If you happen to get aggressive, you can always apply some stain markers or touch-up solutions to the area. Most hardware stores sell them.

5) Hairspray

Using an aerosol hairspray product, you’ll have a better chance of removing polish from within the smaller pores of the wood. Just spray the area with the hairspray and leave it alone for a minute. Put some hot water in a bowl and mix it with soap.

Dip a soft cotton cloth in the soapy hot water and scrub the stained area with it. Repeat this process until the stain is 100% gone. Now, use a natural oil soap to remove the hairspray which you sprayed on the wood.

6) Plastic Putty Knife

If the nail polish was left undiscovered for quite some time, it has likely hardened by this point. Instead of using chemicals, take a plastic putty knife and use it to scrape up the polish from the wood. Fill up a bowl with some hot water and dip a soft cotton cloth in it. Use the soaked cloth to dampen the polish stain as much as possible. That will make it easier to scrape up the remaining polish.


All these polish removal methods are meant for smaller stains. If you happened to spill an entire bottle of fingernail polish onto the floor, resulting in a large stain, then a professional cleaner may need to be called.

Word to the wise, do not apply nail polish remover to your floors or furniture. These products are meant to be used on your nails, not wooden materials. If you do not follow this advice, the finish of your wood floors or furniture will be utterly ruined.

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