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How To Clean an Old Whiteboard

How To Clean an Old Whiteboard

How to Clean a Whiteboard in 2 Minutes Using toothpaste

When we moved into this house, the previous tenants had left a lot of their junk behind. The property management company had gotten rid of a lot of it, but there were still random odds and ends hanging about that we had to figure out what to do with. One of the things that I decided to keep was this old whiteboard that had been hanging in the kitchen. It is about 24 x 36 inches, so I thought it would be a great addition to my craft room. The only problem with it is that the markings on it refused to come off. It had clearly been used a lot, and I suspect whatever they’d chosen to write/draw on it had been left for a long time. I tried various sprays and cleaners on it, but NOTHING worked.

So I headed to the grand old internet to find a solution. Jackpot! Google sure knows her stuff! There were billions of home remedies to clean old whiteboards, but sadly I didn’t have many of the easier options (such as vinegar, isopropyl alcohol or hand sanitizer). So I settled for one of the lesser-known remedies – TOOTHPASTE!

Using toothpaste to clean a whiteboard

Now the things I’d read had said to use just plain cheap old white toothpaste. But we didn’t have any. But I figured since ours is a WHITENING toothpaste, it could only help whiten the whiteboard, amirite???

So onto a wet kitchen cloth I squeezed a little bit of the toothpaste. I wasn’t sure how much to go for, but this did the trick perfectly, so I’d say about half a teaspoon is perfect.

Using toothpaste to clean a whiteboard.

I rubbed the wet cloth against itself a bit to spread the toothpaste around, and then I just began to scrub the whiteboard.

An old whiteboard before cleaning with toothpaste


It took hardly any effort at all to remove the old stains. There were a few spots where there were actual scratches in the board and the marker had become embedded, but a tiny bit of extra effort got it up with no problem. It was literally sparkling white in less than 60 seconds.

An old whiteboard after scrubbing with toothpaste

Once I was satisfied, I simply took a wet paper towel and quickly removed any excess toothpaste (another 30 second job) and then a dry paper towel to make sure it was dry and ready (10 seconds).

The entire process took less than 2 minutes and made my whiteboard look brand new.

I only wish I’d known this trick back when I re-did Mark’s office and couldn’t manage to clean his whiteboard. I’ll never be caught out again!


Tuesday 25th of February 2020

Just tried this tip in our busy Prosecutor's Office, worked like a charm!

Katie Reed

Tuesday 25th of February 2020

Oh yay! I'm so glad. It's always been a great trick for me, so I'm glad it worked for you!

An K

Saturday 3rd of October 2015

Wow I tried this tip and it worked great! however it didn't clean up some of the old marks left from previous uses. I found some helpful tips in this article for that: Good luck!