How to Remove Sharpie Marker Stain from your Doll

As most of you know, my daughter Natalie is a swimmer – and swimmers have this thing about writing their events on their arms and legs with Sharpie marker so they know when they need to race. Last week after her swim meet, Natalie was so tired that she fell asleep before she could get all the marker off her arm and she just happened to be all curled up with her Bitty Baby Penelope, too. The combination of sweat from her arm and the Sharpie marker ended up transferring the word Medley Relay into poor Penelope’s head.

American Girl doll Bitty Baby with sharpie marker on her face

Natalie was heartbroken! We washed it with soap – nothing. We used make up wipes -nothing. Alcohol wipes – again nothing!

I posted this photo to a group of doll friends and got the suggestion of Oxy acne cream with 10% Benzoyl Peroxide from Charlie of And then I did more research and watched Stephenswodadancer’s video on how to remove Sharpie from  your doll’s skin, and she uses Oxy, too. We went to the store yesterday to pick up the Oxy but had to wait until today to try it because the sun never came out yesterday.

So a few hours ago, Natalie rubbed the Oxy all over the marker area on Bitty’s head, covered it with plastic wrap and set Bitty on the picnic table out back in the sun for about 2 hours.

When we came in and took a closer look, ALL OF THE MARKER WAS GONE!!

Clean American Girl Bitty Baby after Sharpie marker removal

Wow! The Sharpie is all gone!

We were lucky and the words transferred onto Bitty came out quickly, but for some stains you may have to repeat this process a few times before you get success.


If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment, liking us on Facebook, or subscribing to the RSS feed updates via email or a Feedreader. This post may contain affiliate links or other sponsored material. Opinions are 100% the author's. Thanks!


  1. firstie

  2. whoa, this is really helpful! My molly has some purple stuff on her arm that wont come off! I will try this!

  3. Cool! Secondie!

  4. fourthie!

  5. Stephenswodadancer is great! I watch her videos. And I’m glad your bitty baby is ok Natalie!

  6. fourthie! cool!

  7. click on me and you can go to american girl!

  8. I wish I would have known that. There has been lots of cases with my barbies when I has to throw them out.

  9. Isabella says:

    When are you going to post Days of Play?

  10. yeah i love stevenswodadancer! I am also glad that your bitty baby is ok, Natalie!

  11. Would this work for pen on a normal low-quality baby doll of my cousins? Her little sister scribbled all over it and now my cous is heartbroken! :(

  12. Zoe – its worth a try

  13. Great tip! :)

  14. aglover says:

    Cool do you think it would work with those oxy wipes?

  15. Erin :) says:

    Magic erasers are the Best! It can get dirt, pen, or sharpie off!

  16. cool thx

  17. I might try this on my Bitty Twin. I used to sleep with him (it’s one of the old Bitties) and he has paint smudges on his forehead from being hit against the wall. You’re right, Char, it’s worth a try!

  18. I have to try this on my sister’s Felicity! She has purple smudges she got from cheap, low quality doll clothing all down her legs!

  19. good for the bitty baby! thanks for that, i just gave my little sister some of my old dolls and she might like totally mess them up!

  20. Cool!!

  21. Ahhhhhh! Autocorrect gets me every time! Stephenswodancer. B-)

  22. ugh. This time i forgot the other Da inStephenswodadancer.

  23. 22ndie!

  24. 23rdie lol

  25. Caitlin P says:

    Benzoyl Peroxide is what we tell customers at the doll hair salon to use. I’m surprised American Girl doesn’t have it on their website because we tell people about it all the time! We see a lot of dolls with either pen marks or stains from non American Girl clothing that our baking soda can’t get off. I’ve never had to try it thank goodness, but it looks like it works well!

  26. cool i am on a swim team too!!! good thing to know just in case.

  27. Char do you think this would work on paint stains too?

  28. ags139 – yes I think it is worth trying

  29. This is so awesome! Magic Erasers work really well too! :)

  30. Magic Erasers well remove some paint from your doll if your not careful

  31. thanks Char might do this on my molly.

  32. parisgirl124 says:

    Can you use a 5% acne one?