I recently had the walls and ceiling in my home office refinished with a smooth texture. When I was painting the walls, in a couple of the corners, I bumped the roller against the adjacent wall. I didn't notice this until after the paint dried so now I have circular drip marks in a couple of spots. The paint is a flat interior latex.

How can I remove these marks without damaging the nice new texture (that I paid a not insignificant amount of money to get)?

Tools and supplies I have to hand include: full sheets of sandpaper in various grits, hand sander w/ also with various grits (I think 220 is the finest), Roto-Zip (but without any of the buffing/sanding/polishing accessories). I can be convinced to get other tools or supplies within reason. :)

3 Answers 3


If the painting was recent (within say a month or so), and is still a bit rubbery, you can do a great job using a single-edge razor blade to slice off just the offending drip. Hold the blade almost flat to the wall so it doesn't dig in to the surrounding paint. Then you'll just have that little circle to touch up with a dab from the corner of your brush.

This also works for other similar blemishes like roller fuzz or small chunks of latex.


How about just using an Extra Fine Sanding Sponge:

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  • 1
    I've tried this exact sponge, and it takes some serious elbow grease to sand down a drip mark. You also end up taking a lot of paint off from the surrounding area. (I was using it on eggshell though, not flat.) I'd try the razor blade option first.
    – Doresoom
    Commented Oct 26, 2010 at 13:47
  • I've used these in the past for cutting the surface of glossy paint, but never really considered them for actual real sanding. I ended up using one to tidy up the area after getting most of the drip mark off with the razor blade.
    – Niall C.
    Commented Nov 24, 2010 at 2:13

The sanding sponges work great. Elbow grease, however, may not be the best approach. If the paint is relatively new than lightly sand the high spot by letting the sandpaper do the work. It may take some time and several passes. The friction from the sanding tools can soften the paint if it is not completely dry. Use a 80-100 grit open coat sand paper to knock down the ridge so it is almost level with surrounding area. Than switch to a 120-150 grit paper for a final and smooth finish.

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