How to Remove White Out on Paper

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By Steven Hal

Whiteout, also known as correction fluid, has been a handy tool for erasing mistakes on paper for decades. However, dealing with whiteout stains or spills on paper can be a challenge. In this article, we’ll explore effective methods and tips on how to remove whiteout on paper, helping you rescue your documents from unsightly blemishes.

How to Remove White Out on Paper
Image Source: Office Depot

Understanding Whiteout Composition:

Whiteout typically consists of a fluid containing a pigment or an opaque substance, which, when applied to paper, covers mistakes or errors. Traditional whiteout formulas are oil-based, while newer versions may be water-based. Understanding the composition of the whiteout can guide you in selecting the appropriate removal method.

Method 1: Scraping Off the Dry Whiteout:

  1. Allow the whiteout to dry completely.
  2. Gently scrape off the excess using a plastic scraper, the edge of a credit card, or your fingernail.
  3. Be cautious not to damage the paper surface.

Method 2: Using a Rubber Eraser:

  1. Ensure the whiteout is dry.
  2. Take a clean, soft eraser (preferably a rubber eraser) and gently rub the affected area.
  3. Rotate the paper to prevent smudging and continue until the whiteout is lifted.

Method 3: Applying Nail Polish Remover:

  1. Check that your paper can withstand liquids without damage.
  2. Dampen a cotton ball or cotton swab with non-acetone nail polish remover.
  3. Test a small, inconspicuous area of the paper first to ensure compatibility.
  4. Gently dab the whiteout stain, applying minimal pressure.
  5. Allow the area to dry completely.

Method 4: Using Isopropyl Alcohol:

  1. Ensure the paper is compatible with liquids.
  2. Dampen a clean cloth or cotton ball with isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol).
  3. Test a small area to ensure it doesn’t damage the paper.
  4. Gently dab the whiteout stain, working from the outer edges toward the center.
  5. Allow the paper to dry thoroughly.

Method 5: Utilizing a White Eraser Pen:

  1. Acquire a white eraser pen designed specifically for correcting mistakes.
  2. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use.
  3. Gently apply the correction fluid from the eraser pen onto the whiteout stain.
  4. Allow it to dry.

Tips for Success:

  1. Test in an Inconspicuous Area:
  • Before using any method, test it in a small, inconspicuous area of the paper to ensure it won’t cause damage.
  1. Patience is Key:
  • Allow the treated area to dry completely before assessing the success of the removal.
  1. Use Gentle Pressure:
  • Apply gentle pressure when scraping or rubbing to avoid damaging the paper fibers.
  1. Avoid Harsh Chemicals:
  • Exercise caution with chemicals like acetone, as they can damage certain types of paper.
  1. Consider Professional Assistance:
  • For valuable or irreplaceable documents, seeking professional restoration services may be the safest option.


Removing whiteout from paper requires a delicate touch and careful consideration of the paper type and composition. Whether you opt for gentle scraping, erasers, household items like nail polish remover or isopropyl alcohol, or specialized correction tools, the key is to proceed cautiously and test in inconspicuous areas first. With the right approach, you can effectively erase whiteout stains and restore the integrity of your documents.

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