Has your kid spilled sunscreen on the car seat and you don’t know how to remove sunscreen from car interior? Don’t worry. We’ve got you covered.
Sunscreen or sunblock might be highly beneficial for your skin, keeping UV exposure minimum. But this is certainly not something you want on your car interior, whether the upholstery is leather or vinyl.
It can easily stain your car’s interior, and it tends to be more visible in darker colors. It can result in splotches and streaks, making your car interior messy.
Moreover, most sunscreens are waterproof, so you can’t wipe them off as they spread even further, and you will find them even more difficult to remove.
So, what to do with them? Here is everything you need to know to get rid of sunscreen if you have a smudge on your car interior.
How To Get Sunscreen Stains Out of Your Car Seats?
The best way to get rid of sunscreen from your car interior is to apply a small amount of vinegar or even alcohol and try to rub it on the smudge. You can scrub it in the fabric of your car seat with the help of a non-abrasive sponge and allow it to soak for about a couple of minutes.
After that, you can wipe it away using a towel. It is a highly reliable and simple method, and you can make it happen in no time. But there are various other alternatives available, too, especially if you are looking to treat your carpets.
Do Sunscreens Ruin Your Car Interior?
Many car dealers and even panel beaters say that your sunscreen might protect your skin. However, it can damage your car interior severely. These sunscreens have protective liquids in them that can easily stain your car interior, particularly if your car interiors are dark in color.
Those annoying and unseemly streaks or blotches can make your car look messy. And the worst part is you can’t wipe the smudges away. Most sunscreens available on the market don’t have any water content.
And they are either waterproof or water-resistant. So, they will stay there even after you try to wipe them away using a piece of cloth.
Why Do Sunscreens Stain Your Car Interiors?
There are a couple of reasons why sunscreens can frequently stain your fabrics and other materials inside your cars. One reason is that these sunscreens are oily. So, they are pretty difficult to break down or lift.
The second reason is that they contain a chemical which is known as avobenzone. This chemical tends to absorb UV rays from the sun. This substance can react with iron that is there in hard water. It tends to leave harsh rust or orange stain.
You should know this before removing those sunscreen stains from your car interiors. You will have to be very careful when using water.
Water can dissolve the oils in the sunscreen, but it will also cause lingering streaks and splotches. Furthermore, any iron content therein water will react with the avobenzone in the sunscreen, reacting even further.
You also need to keep in mind that these sunscreens are water-resistant or waterproof. It makes them long-lasting and more effective against rain, sweat, and other water-based activities such as swimming.
Hence, they are designed to withstand moisture. It means rushing to get your warm water, and dish soap won’t help further worsen the damage.
Do All Types of Sunscreens Stain?
There are all types of sunscreens available on the market, and the tricky part is that they have different types of oils and avobenzone in them. These stains on your car interior are caused by avobenzone. These oils make these sunscreens oilier and creamier in texture.
Otherwise, they will be powdery, and your skin won’t be able to absorb them pretty well. Without these two components, sunscreens are pretty useless. But some sunscreens are available on the market that doesn’t have a high staining potential.
Sunscreens that are less likely to stain have zinc oxide in them. Their mineral-based formula rarely features avobenzone. Therefore, the odds of these sunscreens causing a lot of staining are significantly reduced.
These sunscreens tend to be less oily compared to others. So, they are much easier to clean, but there is no 100 percent guarantee that they are completely stain-free. But they can certainly cause fewer stains compared to the sunscreens that have avobenzone in them. So, you can switch to sunscreens that are non-staining.
How To Remove Sunscreen from Car Interior?
You can use different methods to remove sunscreen stains from your car’s interior. The most effective techniques involve rubbing alcohol or white vinegar, degreaser, and baking soda.
The product you choose to remove the stains while slightly changing the method. But for the most part, you will have to rub these products into the stain and let the area soak for some minutes, and then you can scrape it and wipe the affected area.
Rubbing alcohol or white vinegar
These cleaning agents are highly effective as they can disintegrate any oil-based substances. They are also pretty cheap to use as they are common household items.
You will only have to spray them or pour a moderate amount on the affected area and then rub it thoroughly. The treatment will be slightly different for leather interiors or non-leather interiors.
For the leather interior, you will have to use a non-abrasive sponge for scrubbing the affected area and then immediately wipe it with the help of a microfiber towel.
Let the cleaning agent be on the surface for about three to five minutes if you have a non-leather interior such as polyester. Then, spray and scrub.
You can also use a scrub pad, but a scrub brush is more effective. After that, you will wipe it off and check to see if you want to repeat the process or not.
One of the most effective methods to remove sunscreen from your car interior is using a degreaser. This is a product that many professional cleaning companies use for car interiors for fast results. But this is not a household item like rubbing alcohol or vinegar. Therefore, you will have to buy it separately and spend more money on it.
As the name goes, these degreasers are designed to break down oils, and they are pretty effective when you use them on substances like sunscreens. You can buy degreasers for car interiors and use them directly.
But the ones available in jugs are pretty strong, and you have to dilute them before using them. Therefore, you need to go through the instructions before you start using them on your interiors, or you will damage them.
The method is pretty similar to applying to rub alcohol and scrubbing it off after a few minutes. Then, you can determine if you need to repeat the princess or not.
Cornstarch or baking soda
It is another commonly available household item, and you can use it for cleaning with good results. This method is best for fresh stains, and they work the best on carpets.
If your stain is new, you can try blotting up most of it with the help of a piece of paper or rag and then pour baking soda directly on the affected area. Just use a brush for scrubbing and let it rest for about 15 minutes.
It will soak up any sunscreen, and you can scrape or vacuum the agent. You always have the option of repeating these steps if any sunscreen is left on the affected area.
Why Remove Sunscreen from Car Interior?
You must remove the screen from your car’s interior. These sunscreens have oils and avobenzone in them, and they tend to absorb UV rays, which can permanently damage your car’s interior.
They also don’t have water content in them, but avobenzone can react with the iron content in water, and it can cause rust-colored or orange stains. So you have to be careful when trying to wipe them with water as it has iron content.
How to Prevent Any Future Sunscreen Stains?
Now you know how to remove sunscreen from car interior but to avoid sunscreen stains on your dashboard or seats in the future, you must regularly clean your interior and vacuum it.
It will help prevent the sunscreen from sticking to your car’s interior and protect against any harmful UV rays. In addition, using an auto detailer can help remove any mineral deposits left behind caused by the sunscreens. It is the most effective way to keep your car interior clean and easy to maintain.
How do you get sunscreen off black leather seats?
Removing sunscreen off black leather seats is similar to eliminating sunscreen off other colored leather seats. While treating either, you have to be more careful and not use an abrasive sponge for scrubbing the cleaning agent you are using.
You can use vinegar, baking soda, or degreaser for this purpose. But make sure that you don’t let it be on the least seats for too long, or the cleaning agent will start damaging the leather seats.
How do you remove oil-free sunscreen?
Oil-free sunscreen is relatively easy to remove, and you can use baking soda to remove it. Just blot the sunscreen as much as and cover it by pouring some baking soda. Then, leave it there for about 15 minutes and let it dry. After that, you can scrape it, and you will see that the stains will be gone.
Does soap remove sunscreen?
No, soap will not cut it when removing sunscreen because the oil and avobenzone can react with soap, and it will further stain the affected area.
What cleanser removes sunscreen?
The most effective option is degreaser because it is a commercial cleaner that professional cleaning companies use. It is highly effective and can deal with different types of sunscreens.
There you have it. Now you know how to remove sunscreen from car interior. Sunscreen can be pretty tough to remove from your car interior. But it is not completely impossible to get the job done. There are various household items that you can use for this purpose. These include rubbing alcohol, vinegar, baking soda, and cornstarch.
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