How to remove resin from clothes

Working with resin can be a messy business. Whether you’re an epoxy artist, a woodworker, or a hobbyist, the sticky, gooey substance has a knack for finding its way onto your clothes. And once it dries, it can be a real challenge to remove. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore various methods to help you get that stubborn resin off your garments, so you can keep your clothes looking fresh and your creativity flowing.

remove resin from clothes

The Importance of Prompt Action

Before we dive into the removal techniques, it’s crucial to understand the importance of acting quickly. The longer the resin sits on your clothes, the harder it becomes to remove. Fresh resin is much easier to deal with than dried and cured resin. So, as soon as you notice a resin spill or splatter, take immediate action to increase your chances of success.

Method 1: The Freezer Trick

One of the most effective ways to remove fresh resin from clothes is by freezing it. This method works best for uncured resin, as the cold temperature prevents it from fully curing and hardening.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Place the affected garment in a plastic bag or wrap it in plastic wrap.
  2. Put the wrapped garment in the freezer for at least an hour or until the resin is completely frozen solid.
  3. Once frozen, remove the garment from the freezer and use a dull knife or spatula to scrape off the hardened resin.
  4. Gently brush or shake off any remaining resin debris.

The freezing process makes the resin brittle and easier to break off from the fabric fibers. However, be gentle during the scraping process to avoid damaging the material.

Pro Tip: Use a Dedicated Freezer

If you work with resin frequently, consider investing in a small, dedicated freezer specifically for this purpose. This way, you can avoid contaminating your food freezer with resin residue.

Method 2: The Solvent Solution

If the resin has already cured or the freezer method didn’t work, you may need to turn to solvents. Solvents can help break down the chemical bonds in the resin, making it easier to remove.

Here are some effective solvent options:

  1. Acetone: This powerful solvent is excellent for dissolving cured resin. However, use caution as it can also damage certain fabrics, such as acetate or triacetate.
  2. Isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol): A milder alternative to acetone, rubbing alcohol can help soften and dissolve resin without damaging most fabrics.
  3. Mineral spirits: These petroleum-based solvents are effective at breaking down resin and are generally safe for most fabrics.

To use solvents, follow these steps:

  1. Test the solvent on a small, inconspicuous area of the garment to ensure it doesn’t cause discoloration or damage.
  2. Apply the solvent to the resin stain using a clean cloth or paper towel.
  3. Allow the solvent to sit for a few minutes to penetrate the resin.
  4. Gently rub or scrape the area to remove the softened resin.
  5. Rinse the area with clean water and launder the garment as usual.

Always work in a well-ventilated area and wear gloves when using solvents to protect your skin.

Commercial Product Recommendation: Goo Gone Solvent

Goo Gone is a popular solvent-based product specifically designed for removing tough, sticky messes like resin. It’s formulated to be safe on most fabrics and surfaces, making it a convenient option for tackling resin stains on clothes.


  • Effective on cured and uncured resin
  • Safe for most fabrics and surfaces
  • No harsh odors or fumes
  • Easy to use spray bottle

Method 3: The Heat and Scrape Technique

If the resin has fully cured and solvents aren’t doing the trick, you may need to employ a more aggressive method. The heat and scrape technique can be effective, but it does carry the risk of damaging the fabric, so use caution.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Place a clean, thick cloth or paper towel over the resin stain.
  2. Using a hot iron (no steam), press down firmly on the cloth or paper towel for several seconds.
  3. Quickly lift the iron and scrape off any softened resin with a dull knife or spatula.
  4. Repeat the process of heating and scraping until the resin is removed.

Be careful not to leave the iron in one spot for too long, as this can scorch or burn the fabric. Additionally, test this method on an inconspicuous area first to ensure it doesn’t cause damage.

Pro Tip: Use a Protective Layer

When using the heat and scrape method, consider placing a thin, protective layer between the iron and the garment to prevent direct contact. A clean, thin cloth or parchment paper can help distribute the heat evenly and minimize the risk of scorching or damaging the fabric.

Method 4: The Baking Soda Paste

If you prefer a more natural approach, baking soda can be a gentle yet effective way to remove resin from clothes. The abrasive nature of baking soda can help break down the resin while being safe for most fabrics.

Here’s how to make a baking soda paste:

  1. Mix equal parts baking soda and water to form a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste directly to the resin stain and let it sit for at least an hour.
  3. Use an old toothbrush or soft-bristled brush to gently scrub the paste into the stain.
  4. Rinse the area with clean water and launder the garment as usual.

The baking soda paste can be particularly useful for removing dried or cured resin stains that have been set in for a while.

Commercial Product Recommendation: Arm & Hammer Baking Soda

Arm & Hammer is a trusted brand for baking soda, making it a convenient and affordable option for creating your own baking soda paste for resin stain removal.


  • Pure, natural baking soda
  • Gentle yet effective abrasive action
  • Multi-purpose cleaning and stain removal
  • Affordable and widely available

Method 5: The Enzymatic Cleaner Approach

Enzymatic cleaners are specifically designed to break down stubborn stains and residues, making them an effective option for removing resin from clothes. These cleaners contain enzymes that help dissolve and lift the resin from the fabric fibres.

Here’s how to use an enzymatic cleaner:

  1. Choose a high-quality enzymatic cleaner formulated for removing tough stains and residues.
  2. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for diluting and applying the cleaner.
  3. Allow the cleaner to sit on the resin stain for the recommended amount of time.
  4. Gently scrub the area with a soft-bristled brush or sponge.
  5. Rinse the area with clean water and launder the garment as usual.

Enzymatic cleaners can be particularly useful for removing set-in resin stains that have been present for an extended period.

Commercial Product Recommendation: Zout Laundry Stain Remover

Zout is a popular enzymatic cleaner that effectively tackles tough, set-in stains, making it a great option for tackling stubborn resin stains on clothes.


  • Powerful enzymatic formula
  • Effective on various types of stains, including resin
  • Safe for use on most fabrics
  • Easy to apply and rinse

In-Depth: Understanding Resin and Its Properties

To better understand the challenges involved in removing resin from clothes, it’s helpful to have some knowledge about the nature of resin itself.

Resins are typically made from a variety of synthetic or plant-based materials, such as epoxy, polyurethane, or tree sap. They start as a liquid or semi-solid state and then undergo a curing process, during which they harden and solidify.

The curing process involves a chemical reaction that crosslinks the resin molecules, forming a rigid, durable material. Once cured, resins become highly resistant to solvents, heat, and other environmental factors, making them difficult to remove from surfaces like clothing.

Types of Resins

There are several types of resins commonly used in various applications, each with its unique properties and challenges when it comes to stain removal:

  1. Epoxy Resins: These are widely used in adhesives, coatings, and composite materials. Epoxy resins are known for their strong adhesion, durability, and chemical resistance, making them particularly challenging to remove once cured.
  2. Polyurethane Resins: Found in paints, varnishes, and sealants, polyurethane resins are highly resistant to moisture, chemicals, and abrasion. Their flexibility and durability make them popular choices in various industries, but also make them harder to remove from fabrics.
  3. Acrylic Resins: Often used in paints, coatings, and adhesives, acrylic resins are known for their clarity, UV resistance, and versatility. While generally easier to remove than epoxy or polyurethane resins, they can still pose a challenge on certain fabrics.
  4. Plant-Based Resins: Derived from natural sources like tree sap or plant oils, these resins are often used in varnishes, lacquers, and finishes. While generally considered more environmentally friendly, their removal from clothes can still be difficult, especially if they have fully cured.

Understanding the specific type of resin you’re dealing with can help you choose the most appropriate removal method and adjust your approach accordingly.

Resin Curing Time and Factors

The curing time of a resin can vary greatly depending on several factors, including the type of resin, temperature, humidity, and the presence of catalysts or hardeners. Some resins may cure within a few hours, while others can take days or even weeks to fully harden.

Factors that can affect curing time include:

  1. Temperature: Higher temperatures generally accelerate the curing process, while lower temperatures can slow it down.
  2. Humidity: Most resins require a certain level of humidity to cure properly. Too much or too little humidity can impact the curing process.
  3. Catalysts and Hardeners: Many resins require the addition of catalysts or hardeners to initiate and control the curing process.
  4. Surface Area: Thicker applications of resin generally take longer to cure than thin coatings, as the curing process starts from the outside and works its way in.

Understanding these factors can help you determine the best time to tackle a resin stain on your clothes, as well as the potential difficulty level of the removal process.

Resin Stain Removal Challenges

Several factors contribute to the challenges of removing resin stains from clothes:

  1. Chemical Resistance: Once cured, resins become highly resistant to solvents, making them difficult to break down and remove.
  2. Adhesion: Resins are designed to adhere strongly to surfaces, making them challenging to separate from fabric fibers.
  3. Flexibility: Some resins, like polyurethane, are flexible and can become embedded deep within the fabric weave, making complete removal more difficult.
  4. Fabric Type: Certain fabrics, like delicate silks or synthetics, may be more susceptible to damage from the removal methods or solvents used.

By understanding these challenges, you can approach the removal process with the appropriate caution and techniques, increasing your chances of success while minimizing potential damage to your clothes.

With this in-depth knowledge about the nature of resins and the factors that influence their curing and removal, you’ll be better equipped to tackle those stubborn resin stains on your clothes effectively.

Additional Tips and Tricks

  1. Act quickly: As mentioned earlier, the sooner you address a resin stain, the better your chances of successful removal.
  2. Test first: Before using any method, always test it on a small, inconspicuous area of the garment to ensure it doesn’t cause discolouration or damage.
  3. Patience is key: Removing resin from clothes can be a time-consuming process. Be patient and persistent, and don’t be afraid to repeat the process if necessary.
  4. Seek professional help: If the resin stain is particularly stubborn or you’re dealing with a delicate or valuable garment, consider seeking the assistance of a professional dry cleaner or textile restoration service.
  5. Prevent future stains: Invest in protective clothing or aprons when working with resin to minimize the risk of staining your regular clothes.
  6. Work in a well-ventilated area: Many of the solvents and chemicals used in resin removal can produce fumes, so ensure proper ventilation to avoid inhaling harmful vapours.
  7. Wear protective gear: When using solvents or chemicals, always wear gloves, goggles, and other appropriate protective equipment to keep yourself safe.


Removing resin from clothes can be a challenging task, but with the right techniques, patience, and a bit of elbow grease, it’s definitely possible. Whether you choose the freezer trick, solvents, heat and scraping, baking soda paste, or enzymatic cleaners, the key is to act quickly and proceed with caution to avoid damaging your garments.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure, so take precautions when working with resin to minimize the risk of stains in the first place. Invest in protective clothing, work in a well-ventilated area, and follow proper safety protocols.

With this comprehensive guide and the additional tips and tricks provided, you’ll be equipped to tackle even the most stubborn resin stains on your clothes. Happy crafting, and may your clothes remain resin-free!

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As the founder of Clean It Spotless, I am Melissa Walker, a leading expert in removing tough stains from fabrics, carpets, and upholstery. With over 10 years of experience in the cleaning industry, I have developed my own natural, non-toxic stain-fighting formulas that lift stains while preserving the integrity of the underlying material. My stain removal tutorials are widely read online, and I have appeared on local TV segments demonstrating my techniques. I also present popular stain removal workshops at community centers and schools.

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