How to Clean Oil-Based Ink Pads for Rubber Stamps: A Step-by-Step Guide

Cleaning rubber stamps after using oil-based ink can be challenging but is essential to maintain their longevity and quality. Here's a detailed guide from our Pinky Elephant crew on how to clean your rubber stamps effectively:

Materials Needed:

  • Paper towels or a soft cloth
  • Mild soap or dish detergent
  • Rubbing alcohol or baby oil
  • Water
  • A soft-bristled toothbrush or stamp scrubber
  • Stamp cleaner (optional)


  1. Blot Excess Ink:

    • Immediately after using the stamp, press it onto a paper towel or soft cloth to blot off as much excess ink as possible.
  2. Apply Rubbing Alcohol or Baby Oil:

    • Apply a small amount of rubbing alcohol or baby oil to a clean cloth or paper towel.
    • Gently rub the cloth over the rubber stamp to break down the oil-based ink. Be careful not to scrub too hard to avoid damaging the stamp.
  3. Scrub with Mild Soap:

    • Mix a small amount of mild soap or dish detergent with water to create a soapy solution.
    • Dip a soft-bristled toothbrush or stamp scrubber into the soapy solution and gently scrub the surface of the stamp. This will help remove any remaining ink.
  4. Rinse Thoroughly:

    • Rinse the stamp under lukewarm running water to remove the soap and loosened ink. Ensure that all soap residues are thoroughly washed away.
  5. Dry the Stamp:

    • Pat the stamp dry with a clean paper towel or cloth. Make sure the stamp is completely dry before storing it to prevent any water damage or mold growth.
  6. Optional: Use a Stamp Cleaner:

    • If you have a stamp cleaner specifically designed for oil-based inks, you can use it as an additional step. Follow the instructions provided with the stamp cleaner for best results.


  • Clean your stamps immediately after use to prevent the ink from setting and becoming more difficult to remove.
  • Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that could damage the rubber surface.
  • Regular maintenance and cleaning of your stamps will help extend their life and keep them in good condition.

By following these steps, you can effectively clean your rubber stamps and ensure they remain in excellent condition for future use. Happy Stamping!

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