I was cleaning my paint brush, bucket and roller in my bathtub. Afterwards I noticed that I stained a couple spots of the bathtub. The stains are a light blue (the paint was a dark blue). I am not sure of the material of the bathtub but it is the common material you see a lot of bathtubs in apartments (The closest thing I would relate it to is fiberglass with a white shiny glass but I don't know/think it is fiberglass). It isn't dried on paint (it feels completely smooth and looks like a stain).

How can I remove the stain? I have tried scrubbing, baking soda and water (paste), baking soda and hydrogen peroxide(paste), and bleach but I haven't got it off yet. I could try scrubbing harder but I am afraid of harming the tub itself.

  • If not a gel coat on fiberglass, its an acrylic.
    – HerrBag
    Apr 9, 2013 at 22:30
  • Saw one suggestion to make a paste with Ajax power 3:1 with water, 15 min then rinse off (don't scrub).
    – HerrBag
    Apr 9, 2013 at 22:59
  • Three possibilities: Ethyl alcohol (vodka), Vinegar (5%), Ammonia (5%). Soak a towel with each and let it sit on the stain for a while, rub arounf a bit and rinse. If the dye is a metal comples, you might also get lucky with a paste of borax (it's a good chelator). Apr 9, 2013 at 23:17
  • I also tried Ajax paste (which might be the same as borax?) I'll try the other three.
    – Michael
    Apr 10, 2013 at 19:02
  • @Michael no, borax is different, found in the laundry aisle at the groc store: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borax Apr 10, 2013 at 19:24

3 Answers 3


If the tub material is fiberglass (and most commonly are) the best way to remove any blemish is with an orbital sander and some 300 600 and 1000 grit Wet and Dry sandpaper. Using a spray bottle filled with water wet the stained surface. Starting with the lowest grit sand and keep the area wet. Let the sander do the work. No need for hand pressure. Watch how fast the stain is being removed (it should go quickly. Move through the grits and spray to keep surface continuously wet. The paper is of such a fine grit it will not leave any discernible scratches. When completed apply a cleaner/sealer for fiberglass.


WD40. Works every time and doesn't harm fiberglass or acrylic. If the spot is slippery afterwards, just hit it with a degreaser

  • sorry, missed the part about the stains being lighter than the paint. you probably have some subsurface pigment residue in the micropores in the surface. you can get it right off with methylene chloride, but just with a little on a cotton swab or q tip. surface will be matte afterwords, but you can buff it up with automotive clearcoat polish or brasso (even toothpaste can work if you are patient) Dec 4, 2015 at 2:43

Toothpaste worked for me! Didn't even need to scrub. Just wiped it on, and then used a wet cloth to wipe it off :)

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