Amodex Ink & Stain Remover Product Review

Where's the Ink?

Courtesy of Amodex

You'll be saying, "where's the ink?" after using Amodex Ink & Stain Remover. One of the most often asked laundry questions is how to remove both ball-point ink and permanent ink stains. I now have an answer, Amodex. Apparently, I'm not alone as Crayola, Liquid Paper, Pilot Pen and Sanford Sharpies all recommend Amodex on their websites for product stain removal.

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Amodex Ink & Stain Remover

Amodex Ink & Stain Remover is a lanolin-based soap in a cream formula. There are no product ingredients listed other than lanolin. Lanolin is a non-toxic yellow, waxy substance secreted by the sebaceous glands of wool-bearing animals, usually sheep. It is often found in skin lotions and has industrial uses as a lubricant, emulsifier and water repellent.

Amodex is sold as a stain remover for any type of ink from fountain pen to stamp pads to whiteboard markers to permanent ink. It is also recommended for food stains, blood, crayon, lipstick and cosmetics, hair dye, tree sap, tar and most pet stains (doesn't work on cat urine). Amodex will not remove rust or mildew and mold stains. Not only can Amodex be used on all types of fabric in clothes and upholstery - including leather, it can also be used on laminate, wallpaper, linoleum, paint, plastic, wood, appliances and all types of countertops.

It is suggested that Amodex be tested on colored fabrics in a hidden area to check for colorfastness. Amodex should always be applied to a dry garment - not wet - for best results. The product is applied directly to the stain and then rubbed in with a fingertip or soft brush, like an old toothbrush.

Amodex is available in the following sizes:

  • .5 ounce applicator tube
  • 1 ounce bottle
  • 4 ounce economy bottle

The products are can be purchased at some retailers including Hobby Lobby, Office Max, The Container Store, Giant and Stop and Shop. It can also be ordered online.

The Amodex Story

Amodex Ink and Stain Remover is the result of a family finding a solution to their problems. Anastase Petra and Silvia Fatse were running a printing company in the 1950s and they found the carbon, hectograph and mimeo ink stains nearly impossible to remove. The stains discolored hands and often permanently marked and ruined garments. So, they set out to solve the problem. By 1957, they had created Amodex Hand Cleaner to remove the ink stains. The product was marketed primarily to schools, banks and the printing industry.

The product was a success and by 1958, the Fatses left the printing business and founded Amodex Products, Inc. While Petra (Peter) traveled to promote their products, Silvia oversaw the day-to-day operations.

In the early 70s, Amodex Hand Cleaner became Amodex Stain Remover for Hands & Fabrics. The range of uses expanded from just ink stains to include everyday household stains such as food, blood, grease and grass.

As pen and ink companies recognized the cleaning power of Amodex in removing permanent and whiteboard marker ink, the product was renamed Amodex Ink & Stain Remover in the 1990s.

Today, the company remains in the hands of the Fatse family with Sylvia Fatse serving as president as the third generation learns the business. The company is based in Bridgeport, Connecticut. All products are made in the United States and marketed in the U.S. as well as Canada, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Spain and Australia.

Product Review and Laundry Recommendation

I gave Amodex a try on a permanent ink stain on a leather purse. First, I marked the purse and allowed the ink to dry. I applied a bit of Amodex and then blotted the stained area with a soft, white cloth. The ink was removed immediately! Next, I marked the purse again and set it aside for three days.

Once again, I used the same treatment technique and the ink wiped right away. It took very little Amodex to remove the stain and it left the leather looking supple and stain free. I am sold. Amodex is my go-to leather cleaner.

I then marked a permanent ink stain on a white, cotton t-shirt. It was a large square of green ink. After it dried, I applied Amodex following the bottle directions to work it in and then blot from the back with paper toweling. This stain took a lot more work. If you're not careful, the ink will bleed and spread. And never let the stained area touch another part of the shirt while treating or you'll have two stains to remove. Eventually, I got the stain out but it was a long process.

Next I moved to stain removal on clothes. I had one knit shirt of cotton and spandex that had a grease stain that had been washed and dried. Yes, I make laundry mistakes! Another knit shirt just had unknown mystery stains on one side - maybe food, maybe a bit of soil from a folding chair, who knows. I followed the directions and applied Amodex to the stained areas, working in the solution. The shirts were then immediately washed as usual.

The stains came out but I could see a bit of discoloration - almost an oily look - where I had applied the product. So, I mixed a solution of oxygen-based bleach (OxiClean, Clorox 2, Country Save Bleach, Purex 2 Color Safe Bleach) and cool water. I submerged the shirts to soak for about 4 hours and then washed again. The discoloration came out but it was disappointing to have to wash the shirts twice.

The bottom line, Amodex will have a permanent spot on my laundry shelf. It works amazing well on leather and hard surfaces to remove ink. I will also use it with care on non-washable fabric stains after testing for spotting.

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Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.