Removing Water Marks

February 2011  | 

If you have wood furniture, such as a dining table, coffee table or even a dresser, you might want to be careful to not leave liquids on the surface. If you do, you might see marks similar to the one pictured to the left.  These are water marks and many people think they are irreparable.  But if you act quickly, there are a few household methods to removing these stains without using any harmful chemicals.  The first thing to remember, though, is to avoid rubbing, scrubbing or wiping the liquid off the wood surface.  Try to blot it out gently and quickly using a clean cotton towel.


Apply a generous layer of mayonnaise onto the mark and leave it over night.  In the morning wipe the surface with a thick cotton cloth.


Polish the mark with white toothpaste until it disappears. Remember to use a white paste, not a gel!


If there’s a smoker in the house, you can use those cigar or cigarette ashes to rub into the mark until it disappears.

Baking Soda

Mix baking soda and water to make a paste.  Rub the paste into the stain and leave it overnight then wipe with a cotton cloth in the morning.
Source: “How Do I Remove Water Marks from Wood?” WiseGEEK: Clear Answers for Common Questions. WiseGEEK. Web. 24 Nov. 2010. <>.