How to Remove Sticker Residue

Hands removing sticker from a bottle

Children love stickers, and sometimes they end up on windows, walls, furniture, clothing, and places you would never expect. Some adults like stickers as well, and you may find yourself regretting you stuck one on a closet door or car bumper a few months or years down the road. Can the residue from stickers be removed? You’ll be relieved to know in most cases, the answer is yes. Enjoy the tips below!

Whether on wood, plastic, glass, rubber, or other materials, the first thing you should do after removing the sticker is to remove as much residue as possible with your fingers. You can do this by rubbing your finger across the residue to form balls that you can pluck off. Once you’ve removed as much as possible, try the following:

If the item with the residue can go into the sink, put a couple of squirts of dish soap into hot water and let the item soak for 10 or 15 minutes, then scrape off the remaining residue using a credit card or plastic scraper.

Peanut butter works well to remove residue from glass, plastic, and wood. All you need to do is put a little peanut butter on the gunk and let it remain long enough to soften the residue. Clean up the gunk and the peanut butter using a clean rag. Mayonnaise, canola oil, and other cooking oils work well if you don’t have any peanut butter on hand.

Soak a paper towel in warm white vinegar or room temperature rubbing alcohol, then lay it over the sticker residue for about five minutes. This will soften the residue so you can scrape it away with a credit card.

WD-40 is also effective for removing sticker residue. Just spray onto the sticker or gunk that’s left after you have removed the sticker, let it soak for 10 minutes or so, and wipe away with a paper towel or clean cloth.

How to Remove Sticker Residue from Clothing

Clothes aren’t cheap, but you may think all you can do with a shirt or other clothing item that has sticker residue on it is either throw it away or use it as a cleaning rag. In most cases, you can remove the residue.

Residue from stickers can be more easily removed if the item hasn’t gone through the clothes dryer. If you don’t notice the residue until the garment has gone through the dryer, here are some things to try. Always keep what type of material you’re dealing with in mind, and test these remedies in an inconspicuous area.

  • For synthetics, put the item in your freezer for an hour to 90 minutes, then pick off as much of the hardened residue as possible right away. A drop of dish soap and water rubbed on the remaining gunk with a microfiber cloth will usually finish up the job. Launder as usual.
  • Acetone or nail polish remover works wonders for natural fibers. Apply nail polish remover to a clean cloth, then rub the remaining residue on the item of clothing. Wash and dry as usual.

Extra tip: You can also try masking tape to remove as much of the sticker residue as possible before moving on to the next step!

Now that you know how to remove the sticky residue from stickers, you can see the situation isn’t hopeless! From laundry to other household chores, Molly Maid helps free up your time so you can spend it doing things you enjoy. Call us today or connect with your local Molly Maid to learn more.