As more and more people have started to use gel pens rather than the traditional ballpoint or even a rollerball pen, we have noticed more and more people reaching out with a range of questions specific to gel pens. One of the more common questions that we have noticed time and time again is how to erase gel pen ink from paper.
As we see sp many people asking for tips and tricks to erase gel pen ink as well as the popularity of gel pens increasing with each year that passes, we have decided to publish this article. We have collected as many gel pen ink removal hacks as possible that you are able to use to remove your gel pen ink from your paper as easily as possible.
Our goal is to try and help as many of our readers as possible remove any mistakes that they make when using their gel pens from their paper without causing too much damage to the paper. As we are going over a number of different methods, we have added a table of contents below for ease of navigation.
How To Erase Gel Pen Ink From Paper With Ease!
Although the majority of gel pens do use the same gel based ink, some of them do have more unique formulas so some of these methods may not work as well as others on a small number of gel pens. For the most part though, the methods that we have laid out below all work surprisingly well for regular gel pens that the majority how our readers will be using.
We have organised the methods in descending order of what we feel offers the best results at removing your gel pen ink from your paper while causing minimal damage to the actual paper too. This means that the methods that we feel will be able to help our readers the most are at the top.
In addition to this article, we also have our article going over 15 hacks to erase pen ink without damaging the paper too. Although that article is not specific to gel pen ink, if you need to try and keep your paper in the best possible condition with minimal damage, it may be worth checking out too.
Take Advantage Of Nail Polish Remover!
The best option to remove gel pen ink from paper is a small amount of nail polish remover on a cotton bud. Simply dab the cotton bud over the area of paper with the gel pen ink on it to remove the gel pen ink with minimal damage to the paper.
This technique has proven to be the best option time and time again with huge numbers of people using a decent nail polish remover to remove their gel pen ink from their paper if they make a mistake. On top of this, a large number of our readers will probably already have some nail polish remover in their home already helping to keep costs down.
One thing to note is that clear nail polish remover tends to offer the best performance. Some of the nail polish removers that have colors can have their color stain the paper so if possible, always go with a clear nail polish remover to keep your paper in the best possible condition.
Try Using Some Acetone!
The active ingredient in nail polish remover that makes it so good at removing gel pen ink from paper is acetone so we feel it is only right to include pure acetone in our list. Although pure acetone is probably the most effective method for removing gel pen ink from your paper, its high strength can cause a number of issues with the paper too so we consider nail polish remover to be the better option.
If you are using one of the stronger, “permanent” gel pen inks then acetone may be the only option available to you to remove the ink from the paper. It performs very well with stubborn gel pen ink formulas and only needs a small amount of acetone on a cotton bud to be effective too.
The acetone can cause a number of issues with the paper including flaking and thinning with some potential discolouration though. These issues are more prevail and in lower GSM papers too that are more common for most people so this can put many people off using acetone.
Resort To Rubbing Alcohol!
Rubbing alcohol is a great method to remove gel pen ink from paper with it having a high success rate. A small amount of rubbing alcohol on a cotton bud should be able to quickly and easily remove the ink from the paper with minimal damage to the paper.
Please keep in mind that rubbing alcohol is available in a number of different strengths. When it comes to removing gel pen ink from paper we usually recommend that our readers use a 70% rubbing alcohol as it offers the best blend between time and performance.
Anything stronger than a 70% solution risks damaging the paper where as anything lower takes longer to remove the ink. If you do want to keep your paper in the best possible condition then a 50% rubbing alcohol can be a better option as it will help to maintain the paper but will take considerably longer to remove the ink.
Make A Baking Soda With Water Cocktail!
This one can definitely be hit and miss and it will also depend on the gel pen ink formula used in your pen. That said though, some people do mix a little No products found. with water and then apply it to a cotton bud to remove gel pen ink from paper.
It is less effective than the methods above and takes longer but it can work and usually has minimal effect on the quality of the paper too. Just keep in mind that once the gel pen ink is gone, you will have to leave the paper to dry prior to writing on it again.
Not only does this method have issues with the specific gel pen ink formula, it can also be a paint to get the ratio of baking soda to water correct too. Make it too weak and little to nothing will happen, make it too strong and you risk damaging the paper.
See If You Have Any Luck With Lemon Juice!
If you don’t care about maintaining the quality of the paper after removing the gel pen ink then you are able to use lemon juice on a cotton bud. A small amount of lemon juice should easily be enough to get the job done but it is likely that the lemon juice will damage the paper you are using.
Depending on the GSM rating of the paper you are using, this potential damage can be minimal but thinner, lower GSM papers can have a yellow tint to them as well as flake or thin. This is due to the acidic nature of the lemon juice having a negative effect on the paper while being a good option for removing the gel pen ink.
Some people do try to counter this effect by using an alkaline product to counter the strong acidic nature of the lemon juice. In our opinion this is a total waste of time and effort though as you can simply go with one of the options earlier in the article and get better results with ease.
Give Break Fluid A Try!
Although we don’t recommend that you try using brake fluid to remove the gel pen ink from your paper, it does have a great reputation and can work well. The issue is knowing how much break fluid to use without having a negative effect on your paper.
You only need a tiny amount on a cotton bud and we really do mean tiny for it to be able to effectively remove gel pen ink. Some brake fluid formulas do have a color to them so they will cause problems with dying the paper that you are writing on.
Some formulas are harsher on the paper than others too with them causing a visible determination of the paper after use. This is why we always recommend that you only ever use a tiny amount of break fluids or just go with one of the methods covered earlier in the article instead.
Resort To White Out!
Although it is not actually removing the gel pen ink from your paper and it just covers it up, white out can be a great option to use if the ink has dried. Make sure that you let the ink dry prior to applying the white out to avoid any issues though.
Applying the white out to your paper is simple and you can follow the instructions on the site of the container if needed. That said though, the majority of our readers will probably have already used white out at some point and be familiar with the process.
Depending on your exact situation, white out may not be able to meet your needs though. Some people may not use white paper or they may not be permitted to use white out on the paper that they are working on for various reasons putting the methods covered earlier in the article ahead of using white out.
That brings our article going over how to erase gel pen ink from paper to a close. All of the methods that we have covered earlier in the article have been tried and tested by larger numbers of people over the years. As we have touched on throughout the article, some of these methods do have downsides to them depending on your specific needs that you will have to factor in.