Nail Polish on the Wooden Table

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Forum topic by Tommy posted 04-28-2013 11:59 PM 1073 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Tommy's profile


138 posts in 3026 days

04-28-2013 11:59 PM

Topic tags/keywords: finishing refurbishing

OK, our foreign exchange student spilled nail polish on our wooden table. Instead of asking for help, my wife and exchange student tried to clean it themselves with furniture polish. Now the table has a wax like residue on it and it can not be scraped off by a fingernail. It blends in for now so i don’t want to use 320 grit or anything because if it goes too far I may end up refinishing the whole table (not what I want to do). Are there any solutions or solvents or anything that I could use to repair this spot?

Thanks in advance for anyone’s help!

-- Tommy, ---- It's Never Crowded On the Extra Mile.

5 replies so far

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2170 posts in 3048 days

#1 posted 04-29-2013 12:27 AM

A little more info about the table would be helpful; however, unless you made it, the finish is probably a mystery.

Nail polish is usually lacquer and lacquer has enough solvent in it to cut back into itself anytime.

It would appear that you have at least two if not three materials on the top. The polish probably has oil of some sort in it, along with some mild solvent.

It is fair to say, if it’s gooey, then it’s about the same as having paint remover on it.

From this distance? Scrape it off and start again.



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

View jap's profile


1251 posts in 2252 days

#2 posted 04-29-2013 01:36 AM

Acetone dissolves most nail polishes.

-- Joel

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2873 days

#3 posted 04-29-2013 02:38 AM

Acetone does dissolve nail polish. Be careful to not disolve more than you intend to disolve. We had a dresser once that had nail polish on it when we were gifted with it. It was walnut. Our daughter listened to me talk about this stuff and went out and tried some things. It worked well for her. She removed the nail poilish with acetone. She got some Minwax varnish/sealer combo. The stuff most lumberjocks hate to even talk about. She color matched her Minwax and wiped it on. When she got it colored like she needed she brushed on some varnish or laquer (not sure which) clear coat. It looked pretty good when she finished. Much better than a large pool of dried red nail polish on the dresser top. Caution is the word

View NiteWalker's profile


2738 posts in 2775 days

#4 posted 04-29-2013 05:52 AM

+1 on acetone, but don’t apply it directly to the stain. Pour a bit on a rag and wipe the stain off. BTDT.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2873 days

#5 posted 04-29-2013 07:41 PM

yes, allow the acetone on a rag to soften the nail polish and hopefully you will get it to slip off without a log of collateral damage.

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