Sun Tanning Questions

How Do You Remove Sunscreen from Car Interior? (Step-By-Step)

Written by: Anastasija

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Sunscreen is one of those products that just seems to get everywhere, no matter what you do to avoid it. The other annoying thing is that it can also be a nightmare to remove, especially in somewhere as precious as the interior of your car. Luckily, there is a solution!

How do you remove sunscreen from your car interior?

Below are some of the methods you can use in order to get the sunscreen out from your car interior, depending on what area you are trying to remove the stain from, or how long it’s been there. The main thing to remember when trying to remove sunscreen from any surface, as well as the interior of your car, is that you don’t need to panic. Just stay calm and you’ll find it much easier to remove the stain without any stress.

car interior

Also read: How Do You Get Suntan Lotion Out Of Clothes? (3 Methods)

Method #1: Soapy water

If you’ve ever tried to remove any stain from another surface, you’ve probably noticed that soapy water is generally a tried, tested and true way of fixing this staining, and restoring your area to its original condition. However, you should still make sure you follow the instructions below in order to ensure that you’re not causing any damage or using something you shouldn’t.

Soapy water

This method is pretty versatile and can be used on just about any surface inside your car, regardless of the material. You may find that some stains may be too strong to be removed by this method, which is fine, and you can move onto another one if you need to. Nevertheless, this one should work for any regular stain, old or new.

  1. Start by wiping any leftover residue with a gentle wet wipe or tissue if the stain is new or has a sticky surface. Try to avoid spreading the stain any more than it’s already been spread, if possible, and try just blotting it out instead if wiping doesn’t work. This step will just make the next ones easier and creates less mess.
  2. Once you’ve wiped down the stain, you can start to prepare the mixture you’ll be using to lift it. Just mix some lukewarm water with some dish soap, hand soap, or any other soap that won’t be too strong or damage your interior. If you’re unsure whether a certain soap will be safe to use on leather or any other material, you can always google it.
  3. Use a sponge or washcloth to gently scrub on the stain using the mixture you’ve created and continue doing this until the stain has lifted. Try not to be too gentle or too harsh, as you want it to be effective, but not damaging.
  4. Finish by wiping dry with a tissue or clean, dry washcloth to reveal the final result. If the stain hasn’t gone completely after your first attempt, you can always try this method again, or refer to another in this list!

Method #2: Tissue or a microfiber towel

If the stain has only just appeared, and hasn’t had enough time to fully set in, there may not even be any need for you to use a spray or liquid removal product. Especially if it’s somewhere made from a material that stains don’t take to very easily, a simple wipe, or blot, from a towel or tissue may just be enough.

microfiber towel

If you’ve just noticed a stain in your car, or you’ve only just left it, this is the best method to try before any other, as it doesn’t require much, it’s super easy, and very effective. There are a range of different things you can use to do this, so just use what’s available to you.

  1. Find the spot where the stain has settled, or begun to settle, and use your finger to touch it and tell whether or not the stain is sticky, or still slippery. If there is still some slippery residue on the top, this is fine.
  2. Use your tissue or cloth to blot out any sunscreen and keep doing this until it’s all gone. If your surface is slightly sticky, it may be a good idea to first use a microfiber cloth with a small amount of water to release some of this tackiness, before following with the blotting tissue.
  3. If this doesn’t manage to remove your stain completely, it’s sensible to move onto another option, and try to remove the stain through the use of another method.
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Method #3: Alcohol

Different forms of alcohol, such as rubbing alcohol from a bottle, alcohol wipes, or alcohol-based cleaning products, can be really effective and useful when removing stains, especially from surfaces that can be a little tougher. Of course, you can use rubbing alcohol in different concentrations, which also makes it very helpful for getting the strongest solution that your interior can take without any damage. Just make sure that the product(s) you’re using won’t cause any damage to your car’s interior.

rubbing alcohol

In particular, tough stains or those which have been there for a while, and therefore had a long time to penetrate into the material, can be difficult to remove with other methods, which is where the alcohol comes in.

If you’re using alcohol wipes, here is the process:

  1. Use a tissue or microfiber towel to blot any excess residue on the surface of the material, as described in method #2, as this will make it easier for the wipes to get to the real stain, which is the goal of this process.
  2. Take an alcohol wipe and slide it backwards and forwards over the stain in order to help it release from the material. This step may take a little while to work, and the best tip is to be patient during the entirety of it. You may need more than one wipe if the stain is larger, as well.
  3. Take a damp cloth or regular wet wipe and use this to clean over the area where you have just used the alcohol wipe. This way, you know there’s no danger of any leftover alcohol from the wipe being left on the interior and ending up causing damage over time.
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If you’re using rubbing alcohol, use this method

  1. Prepare the surface for the rubbing alcohol by blotting any surface residue off, exactly the same as you would if using alcohol wipes.
  2. Rather than taking an alcohol wipe, you’re going to work through different concentrations of alcohol in this process until you find something strong enough. The first solution is created by mixing rubbing alcohol to distilled water in a ratio of 1:10. This is weaker, so it might work for smaller or easier-to-remove stains. Use this mixture to try and lift the stain using a cloth.
  3. If this isn’t enough, move onto a ratio of 1:5 and repeated the steps
  4. Finally, try again with a fully-concentrated solution of rubbing alcohol. Which should do the trick.
  5. Finish off by wiping down with a damp cloth as described before, like when using an alcohol wipe.

How Do You Remove Sunscreen from Car Interior pin by thirstyfortan

Final thoughts

Leaving any stains on your car interior can be a stressful situation, and the fact that sunscreen stains can be particularly difficult to remove makes this even worse! Don’t panic, though, as you now know plenty of tricks and methods you can use if you ever find yourself in the circumstances in the future. You never know when information like this can be very useful.

About Anastasija

Welcome to my website! I'm Anastasija, and as a redhead with a sensitivity to the sun, I embarked on a quest to find the perfect sunless tanner six years ago.

After extensive research and four years of personal experience, I'm here to share my wealth of tips and tricks for achieving a beautiful, sun-kissed glow.

Whether you're interested in self-tanners, spray tans, or safe sun exposure, this website covers it all.

Join me as I provide valuable insights and guidance for various methods of getting that desired tan.

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