Your interior has just been (re) painted. Everything breathes new. Your work fills you with pride. It is then that, without you knowing how the first ugly spots start to appear. Fingerprints full of chocolate, splashes or worse ... marker! Relax, don't panic: there is a way to clean all the stains without damaging your paint or its shine.
Keep these 3 golden rules in mind
The better the paint quality, the more resistant it is to the mechanical action of cleaning. With that in mind, a strong and durable paint is often worth the price you spend on it. So choose a washable paint in the rooms where you need it most, like the kitchen or the bathroom.
Proceed with spot cleaning immediately. This will prevent dirt from getting into the paint layer.
Never rub dry, but use a liquid. This will reduce the wear and tear on the paint surface, and the dirt will come off more easily.
Some specific maintenance tips
It is above all the type of paint that determines your level of vigilance. And the nature of the stain that determines how to remove it.
The type of paint
Wood paints generally resist abrasion well. Is your stain on the wall or the ceiling? Some precautions should be taken. This is because wall paints do not have a very resistant paint sheet (that is, the solidified paint layer that forms after the paint dries).
The types of paint and the cleaning method suitable for them:
Glossy or matt lacquer
Is it a painted piece of furniture? This is called a lacquer paint or wood paint. These usually feature a scratch-resistant paint sheet. The gloss paints are smoother and are more resistant to dirt. With a damp cloth or sponge, you can remove all the dirt without worry. Did you opt for matt paint? Do not rub too hard and not for too long in one place, as this may result in variations in shine.
Walls painted with gloss or satin paint are still fairly easy to clean. Although the sheet of paint, in this case, is much more porous than that of a lacquer. That means: out of the question to scour! You risk damaging the paint film (i.e. rubbing off the paint sheet). Use a damp cloth or a sponge soaked in water and rub without pressing too hard. For stubborn stains, preferably use a suitable cleaning product.
Tip: test on a small area in a corner first and let it dry to see the result.
Matte wall paint
Beware! The matte wall paint has a super smooth appearance but also has a very thin and porous paint sheet. Which has two drawbacks: dirt quickly penetrates the paint layer (so be sure to clean up immediately).
By rubbing, you quickly remove the matt surface layer of the paint film, which causes the paint to shine. In other words, a permanent shiny stain on a matte surface.
So rub with caution, use the soft side of a damp sponge or cloth. And don't press too hard! Instead, use large movements with your arm rather than small, sharp movements with your wrist. This way you won't scrub insistently on too small areas.
The nature of the stain
Wet stains such as coffee or jam
Do not wait! Do not let the paint film absorb dirt. Because if it penetrates and dries, there is a risk that you will never be able to get rid of it again. Clean the wall carefully with a damp sponge until all the dirt is gone.
Stubborn stains such as pencil or marker
These cannot be cleaned with a sponge, and getting rid of them without streaks is difficult. Take your time to remove the stain. Do not start scouring feverishly in the grip of panic. Use more powerful cleaning products such as Formula Mc Neutral, White Spirit even stronger solvents. However, be careful: the more powerful your solvent, the more you risk dissolving the stain but also damaging the underlying paint layer. Test on a small area in a corner. Gradually wipe off the dirt. Does the sponge get dirty? Rinse it from time to time so as not to spread the stain. Tip: A green sponge allows you to remove a lot of dirt, but it also scrapes a small layer of paint, which will remain more or less visible.
For fat, there is only one remedy: the degreasing product. Has the grease already passed into the paint layer? White spirit could still save the situation.