No one likes to have to remove crayon from the walls. But it happens sometimes. If you have small children, the chances are good that your munchkin is going to explore their creative side at some point. As this creative exploration begins they will likely determine that a wall or two in your house desperately needs their artistic talents. Hopefully you have managed to keep all the permanent markers out of their reach during this phase of child development.
If/when this happens, take a deep breath and remember this is not the end of the world. You can have nice things, this is just a phase and they will grow out of it. Next, take a calm moment to explain to the aspiring artist why coloring on the walls is a “no-no” and show them what they can color on.
Depending on the age of your child and the situation, Junior may need the opportunity to experience the consequences of coloring on the walls. Hand them non-toxic cleaning tools and show them how to clean up the mess they have created. In all likelihood they probably won’t get all crayon markings off to your satisfaction, but in the interest of creating positive feelings within them about chores, I recommend praising their efforts. You can clean the rest with some serious elbow grease and restore your wall to its former glory.
If the crayons were washable, no problem, you can clean those with some basic soap and water. However, they were not washable crayons, there are ways to remove the marks from your painted walls.
A Word of Caution
Before you go to town with your chosen method for removing the wall marks test the cleaning agent on a small non-visible area of your wall to see what it does to the surface, color and sheen. If the area still looks as it should when you finish testing, then go to town on the area that needs cleaning. If you don’t properly test you may find yourself wishing you had kept the crayon instead. You have been warned.
Start with a clean sponge or rag. Get the sponge wet and put baking soda on it. Next, rub the baking soda on the crayon marks. This should effectively remove the crayon from your painted walls. Once the mark is gone wipe away the residual baking soda using a clean, damp cloth or your rinsed and rung out sponge. This method also works on scuff marks. Who doesn’t have one of those on their wall somewhere?
Another recommend method for removing crayon is toothpaste and a toothbrush. Please note, for this to work you need to use actual paste not the gel. Paste has tiny abrasives that polish your teeth. This slightly gritty texture is what helps to remove the unwanted markings from the surface you are scrubbing. This method also seems to work with mediums like dry erase marker as well.
They call it magic for a reason. I would say this is the sponge to hand the perpetrator to do their penance with. If nothing else at least you’ll have an easier time cleaning up the area yourself using one of these Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. If you haven’t yet experienced how amazing these things are, start by getting the sponge wet and then ring out excess water. It doesn’t need to be dripping. With your damp sponge start rubbing the mark on the wall and witness it disappears. No chemicals or soap required.
I have seen some demonstration that show rubbing alcohol works wonders on permanent marker. However, I also know that rubbing alcohol may have adverse effects on certain kinds of paint. Acrylic will come off. Like I said before, test a small non-visible area before you start scrubbing.
You should be aware that flat finish paint does not clean well. Paint with sheen will clean easier than flat will. Keep that in mind when you are repainting any room in the house, especially if you have kids. Prepare yourself if the wall that has been colored on happens to have a flat finish, it may not be recoverable.
Sometimes, even after your best efforts to remove the crayon marks from the wall, some surfaces will simply have to be repainted to restore them to their former state before your child started working on their masterpiece. Sorry. Good news, now you can try that new color you were looking at the other day.
Someday you will be able to laugh about this. Just breath!