How To Clean A Microfiber Couch: Say Goodbye to Stains

microfiber couch

If you do not know by now, I am a Pinterest fanatic. It is my happy place. The place I look when I need inspiration, eye candy, or just as a place to browse. It is a place I like to go when I should be getting work done, cleaning the house, or I do not know, organizing the pantry. Okay, so I am sure you get it by now. Little did I know this place of inspiration was going to save the day!

The Artistic Challenge

You might also know that my little man is quite the artist. He loves to draw everywhere, and I mean everywhere. At first, I embraced it and thought it was cute, but then the unthinkable happened – he colored on my couch with a blue (& green) crayon. When I saw this, I was not thinking happy thoughts of Harold and the Purple Crayon; I was thinking quite the opposite. I figured there was nothing we could do, and I was just going to have to deal with it until we got a new couch. Gives it character, right?

The Pinterest Discovery

I had moved on from the blue crayon incident and accepted it. Until one day, I found a glimmer of hope on, you guessed it, Pinterest. While browsing, I found a way to clean dirt off of a microfiber couch using rubbing alcohol. Would this work with crayon too? Could this be the answer to my dreams? I decided to give it a shot. There is no way it could not get any worse.

  1. Spray It with Rubbing Alcohol: I sprayed it with a light mist of rubbing alcohol just to get it damp. Check and find some rubbing alcohol online.
  2. Scrub It Gently: Scrubbed it with a new sponge.
  3. Patience Is Key: Let it dry. Completely.
  4. Restore Softness: Brushed it with a new scrubbing brush to get the microfiber soft again.

And . . .

Voila! It works on crayon too! Thank you Pinterest! Without you, I would have never found a way to save my couch! And thank you ChrisandRobinsNest for the great idea!

Now that we’ve tackled the crayon crisis, let’s delve deeper into the world of microfiber couch cleaning.

Microfiber is a synthetic fabric made from tiny, tightly woven fibers. These fibers create a soft, durable, and highly stain-resistant material, making it a popular choice for furniture upholstery. Microfiber couches are not only comfortable but also relatively easy to clean, as long as you know the right techniques. Here’s how to keep your microfiber couch looking pristine:

Why Choose Microfiber?

  1. Durability: Microfiber is known for its strength and longevity, making it an excellent choice for furniture that will withstand daily use.
  2. Stain Resistance: The tight weave of microfiber prevents spills and stains from quickly penetrating the fabric, giving you more time to clean up accidents.
  3. Hypoallergenic: Unlike some upholstery materials, microfiber is hypoallergenic, making it a great option for those with allergies or sensitivities.
  4. Easy Maintenance: With proper care and cleaning, microfiber can maintain its appearance for years.

Now, let’s move on to the essential steps to keep your microfiber couch in top condition.

Basic Cleaning and Maintenance

Regular maintenance is crucial to extend the life of your microfiber couch. Here’s how to start:

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

  • Vacuum cleaner with upholstery attachment
  • Soft-bristle brush or lint roller
  • Mild liquid detergent
  • Distilled water
  • Spray bottle

Step 2: Vacuum Thoroughly

Start by using the vacuum cleaner’s upholstery attachment to remove loose dirt and debris from the couch’s surface. Pay extra attention to creases and seams where dirt tends to accumulate.

Step 3: Address Pet Hair

If you have pets, you may need to use a soft-bristle brush or lint roller to remove any stubborn pet hair that the vacuum didn’t catch. This step is essential to maintain a clean and fresh-looking couch.

Step 4: Spot Cleaning

Microfiber is generally stain-resistant, but if you notice any spills or stains, it’s best to address them promptly. Follow these steps:

a. Blot the Stain

Use a clean, white cloth or paper towel to blot up as much of the spill as possible. Do not rub, as this can push the stain further into the fabric.

b. Prepare a Cleaning Solution

In a spray bottle, mix one tablespoon of mild liquid detergent with two cups of distilled water. Shake well to create a gentle cleaning solution.

c. Test in an Inconspicuous Area

Before applying the cleaning solution to the stain, test it in an inconspicuous area of the couch to ensure it doesn’t cause any discoloration or damage.

d. Apply the Solution

Spray the cleaning solution onto the stained area, then gently blot with a clean cloth. Continue this process until the stain is no longer visible.

e. Allow to Air Dry

Allow the cleaned area to air dry completely. You can speed up the drying process by using a fan or opening windows for ventilation.

Dealing with Tough Stains

Ink Stains

Ink stains can be a nightmare on any fabric, including microfiber. If you accidentally spill ink on your couch, here’s how to tackle it:

Step 1: Act Quickly

The key to removing ink stains is to act fast. As soon as you notice the stain, grab a clean, white cloth or paper towel and gently blot the ink to absorb as much as possible.

Step 2: Use Rubbing Alcohol

Pour a small amount of rubbing alcohol onto a clean cloth. Blot the ink stain with the cloth, starting from the outside and working your way toward the center. This helps prevent the stain from spreading.

Step 3: Repeat as Necessary

You may need to repeat the process several times, using a fresh cloth each time, until the ink stain is gone. Be patient and avoid scrubbing, as it can damage the microfiber.

Step 4: Rinse and Dry

After successfully removing the ink stain, dampen a clean cloth with water and blot the area to remove any remaining alcohol. Allow the spot to air dry.

Food and Beverage Stains

Food and beverage stains are a common occurrence on couches. Here’s how to handle them:

Step 1: Blot and Scrape

Start by blotting up any excess food or liquid with a clean cloth or paper towel. For solid residues, gently scrape them off with a plastic spatula or spoon, taking care not to damage the fabric.

Step 2: Prepare a Cleaning Solution

Mix a solution of one tablespoon of mild liquid detergent with two cups of distilled water in a spray bottle.

Step 3: Apply the Solution

Spray the cleaning solution onto the stained area and gently blot with a clean cloth. Repeat as needed until the stain disappears.

Step 4: Rinse and Dry

Dampen a clean cloth with water and blot the cleaned area to remove any detergent residue. Allow it to air dry.

Grease and Oil Stains

Grease and oil stains can be challenging to remove, but with the right approach, you can minimize their impact:

Step 1: Absorb the Excess

Use a clean, white cloth or paper towel to blot up as much of the grease or oil as possible. Do not rub, as this can spread the stain.

Step 2: Apply Cornstarch or Baking Soda

Sprinkle cornstarch or baking soda on the stained area and let it sit for at least 15 minutes. These powders will help absorb the remaining grease or oil.

Step 3: Vacuum

After the powder has absorbed the grease, use a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment to remove it.

Step 4: Check for Residue

Inspect the area for any remaining stains. If necessary, repeat the process until the stain is gone.

Step 5: Blot with Dish Soap Solution

Mix a solution of one teaspoon of dish soap and two cups of distilled water in a spray bottle. Spray the stained area, then blot with a clean cloth. Rinse and allow to air dry.

Deep Cleaning Your Microfiber Couch

General Deep Cleaning

Over time, your microfiber couch may accumulate dirt and odors that require a more thorough cleaning. Follow these steps for a deep clean:

Step 1: Vacuum

Start by vacuuming the entire couch using the upholstery attachment to remove loose dirt and debris.

Step 2: Check for Labels

Check the manufacturer’s care instructions on the couch to ensure you’re using the appropriate cleaning method. Some microfiber couches may have specific guidelines.

Step 3: Choose Your Cleaning Method

There are two common methods for deep cleaning microfiber couches: the alcohol-based method and the steam cleaning method.

Alcohol-Based Method:
  • Follow the same steps mentioned earlier for spot cleaning with rubbing alcohol, covering the entire couch.
Steam Cleaning:
  • Use a steam cleaner with an upholstery attachment.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for using the steam cleaner, as these may vary.
  • Steam clean the entire couch, paying attention to stained or soiled areas.

Step 4: Allow to Dry

Regardless of the cleaning method you choose, allow your couch to air dry completely before using it again.

By deep cleaning your microfiber couch periodically, you can keep it looking fresh and free from embedded dirt.

In the next section, we’ll explore additional tips and tricks to maintain your microfiber couch’s appearance and longevity.

Additional Maintenance Tips

Brush the Fabric

Brushing your microfiber couch regularly with a soft-bristle brush or a clean, dry cloth can help maintain its softness and appearance. This simple step can prevent dirt from settling into the fabric.

Rotate and Fluff Cushions

To ensure even wear and maintain the couch’s shape, regularly rotate and fluff the cushions. This helps distribute any pressure points and prevents sagging.

Avoid Direct Sunlight

Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can cause the fabric to fade over time. Position your microfiber couch away from direct sunlight or use curtains or blinds to block UV rays.

Use Throws and Cushion Covers

Consider using throws and cushion covers as protective layers on your microfiber couch. These can be easily removed and cleaned, preventing spills and stains from reaching the couch’s upholstery.

No Pets on the Couch

If you have pets, it’s a good idea to establish a “no pets on the couch” rule. This reduces the chances of fur and accidents affecting your couch’s cleanliness.

Professional Cleaning

For a thorough and expert cleaning, consider hiring a professional upholstery cleaning service. They have the knowledge and equipment to deep clean your microfiber couch effectively.

Regular Inspection

Lastly, perform regular visual inspections of your couch to catch any stains or damage early. Addressing issues promptly can prevent them from becoming more challenging to remove or repair.


Can I use regular household cleaners on my microfiber couch?

It’s best to avoid using regular household cleaners, as they may contain harsh chemicals that can damage microfiber. Stick to mild detergents and tested cleaning solutions.

Is it safe to use a steam cleaner on all microfiber couches?

Not all microfiber couches are suitable for steam cleaning. Check the manufacturer’s instructions for specific cleaning recommendations, as using steam on the wrong type of microfiber can lead to damage.

How often should I deep clean my microfiber couch?

Deep cleaning your microfiber couch once every 12 to 24 months, depending on usage, can help maintain its appearance and longevity.

Can I remove water stains from my microfiber couch?

Yes, you can remove water stains by lightly dampening the entire cushion or affected area with distilled water and then gently rubbing it with a clean cloth to even out the moisture.

Can I prevent my microfiber couch from attracting pet hair?

Using a lint roller or a pet hair removal tool on your couch regularly can help minimize the accumulation of pet hair. Additionally, consider using a couch cover for added protection.

Final Words

Cleaning a microfiber couch doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With the right techniques and a little patience, you can keep your couch looking pristine for years to come. Remember to act quickly on stains, perform regular maintenance, and deep clean periodically. By following these tips and being proactive, you’ll enjoy the comfort and beauty of your microfiber couch for a long time.