How To Remove Stubborn Bathtub Stains Like Hair Dye And Other Permanent Inks And Dyes

hair-dye-stained-tubGot an email from a visitor to this site the other day:

I’m hoping you could give us some insight here. Our son used a permanent purple hair dye, and very badly stained our vinyl tub surround [it’s BRAND new] that is only 6 months old. We no longer have the manufacturers info on the tub, so ANY help you could offer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for having the site. — M.W.


Since I seem to be on a mission to document every possible way that Magic Erasers can be used to solve unique problems around the house (see below), I thought I’d share.

Perhaps others can use this info, should you happen to get a bad stain in a bathroom tub surround.

My reply to M.W:
The only thing I can think of is Magic Erasers. Have you tried that yet? I know that’s one of the first things I’d be trying, if the stain were in my tub.

The only thing I don’t know is the eraser’s likelihood of dulling the finish on the tub. I doubt it, but I’m just not sure. So try in a small spot first.

Here are lists of all the unusual stains & places that Magic Erasers have worked wonders:


M.W. wrote back:

Thank You Lynnette. YES, the magic erasers worked in conjunction w/ a store brand ‘resolve’ carpet cleaner. In fact , it even came out of the grout & caulking!!! Saved a brand new bathtub!!! My fiance only moved into the home 4 months ago. When he moved in, the tub and sinks STILL had the stickers in them!! Thank You for getting back to me. Have a great day.

By the way, based on M.W.’s experience, I presume this means that Magic Erasers would also work well at removing permanent marker stains (and other products with dyes in them) from the bath tubs and sinks.

Lynnette Walczak

I like to help people find unique ways to do things in order to save time & money -- so I frequently write about "outside the box" ideas that most wouldn't think of. As a lifelong dog owner, I often share my best tips for living with and training dogs. I worked in Higher Ed several years until switching gears to pursue things I was more passionate about. I've worked at a vet, in a photo lab, and at a zoo -- to name a few. I enjoy the outdoors via bicycle, motorcycle, Jeep, or RV. You can always find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun websites).

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  • Clara_wyant

    O MY GOD!! i am SO glad i found this! I remember that taking dye out of our walls and sinks but i NEVER thought to use it on a bathtub, i just dyed ALL of my hair purple and i’ve never had a problem with the rinse out staining the tub EVER till i switched brands and omg the tub is BLUE and PURPLE! BADLY we rent omg i’m so trying this if my landlord see’s this he’s going to have a COW