If you love to drink wine, you know how frustrating it can be when an outside element interferes with your enjoyment of it. When you use the wrong wine glass, you can end up with unsightly etching that mars the aesthetic appeal of your beverage and impairs your ability to properly enjoy it.
Fortunately, there are ways to remove etching from wine glasses that will have your glass looking pristine in mere minutes. Follow these nine steps to learn how to remove etching from wine glasses with ease!
Step 1. Fill The Stain With Rubbing Alcohol
Adding a few drops of rubbing alcohol to your wine stain will help loosen any oils. Let it sit for 5 minutes or so, and then blot with a clean paper towel.
Repeat as needed. This technique works best if you’re dealing with fresh stains—if you can wait, do it later and let it sit overnight before moving on to step 2. (If you need to get rid of an immediate stain, try using isopropyl alcohol instead.)
Step 2. Use a Soft Cloth or Sponge to wipe away the residue
Once you’ve applied your vinegar solution, wipe away any residue with a soft cloth or sponge. This will ensure that it has been fully removed and won’t leave any marks behind. Be sure to use an old washcloth and keep it separate from all other household cleaning products!
After wiping off all of the residue, rinse your glass under hot water to remove any traces of vinegar. It is important to remember that if there are still bits of residue left on your glass after following these steps, you have not removed them properly so you will have to start over again until they are all gone.
Step 3. Scrub Deeply
The etching from a wine glass is usually caused by a deep scratch, which can only be removed by scrubbing. A soft brush and some warm water should be enough to do it. You can also apply vinegar or lemon juice on your stubborn areas.
However, keep in mind that you’ll have to use force, as little chemicals might not be strong enough to remove etchings.
Rub each area for several minutes until all of them are gone. If you are worried about damaging your glasses in any way, you can go through Step 1 and 2 first before proceeding to scrubbing deeply. This will allow time for any acidic materials applied to dissolve slowly into your glass without actually scratching it further.
Step 4. Pat Dry with Paper Towels
It’s important to pat dry your wine glass as opposed to letting it air dry, which can cause water spots. While you’re at it, carefully inspect both sides of your glass for any damage or residue.
If you spot something amiss, don’t worry! It’s much easier (and cheaper) to fix a scratch now than after it’s been etched into your glassware. Remember: It may not look like much now, but a tiny blemish could make a big difference in how your glasses look once they’ve been etched.
Step 5. Soak in Water with Vinegar
Vinegar is known to break down wine etchings and remove them easily. Fill a bowl with water and add some vinegar in it. Dip your wine glass in it so that entire surface is covered by water and vinegar mixture. Leave it for an hour, then rinse off with fresh water.
The effects of adding vinegar in step 5: Vinegar breaks down proteins that make up wine etchings and makes cleaning easier. After having removed etchings, if you want your wine glass to shine again, follow steps 8-9 below to get even shinier glass surface!
Step 6. Brush Off Stains with an Old Toothbrush
If some stain has already been removed, use an old toothbrush to brush off any excess ink. Then allow your glass to dry before moving on to the next step. Alternatively, you can also use a soft cotton cloth or paper towel instead of a toothbrush.
Once again, be careful not to scrub too hard—and remember that it may take more than one try (or up to five minutes) for all of your etching marks to disappear!
Step 7. Polish with a Lint-Free Drying Cloth
Most glass etching cleansers come with a lint-free drying cloth. Apply a few drops of wine glass etching remover onto your microfiber cloth and rub it into your etched wine glasses until they are spotless. If you notice residue after using a cleaning product, try one of these methods to remove it:
Rubbing alcohol, vinegar or lemon juice, barkeeper’s friend and paper towels can also be used to clean residue from glass etchings.
A brand new scouring pad should be purchased for each set of glasses; it will make the polishing process easier. After cleaning, always follow up with a microfiber drying cloth because other materials may leave behind streaks or lint.
Step 8. Rinse with Water and Dry with Paper Towels
It’s always a good idea to rinse off any food debris from your glass with some water, and then dry it off with paper towels.
There are all sorts of surface treatments that can prevent stains in your glass (which is why they’re often found on restaurant glasses), but if you don’t have any lying around, plain old wet-and-dry will do just fine.
You could also use newspaper or a non-scratch scouring pad in place of paper towels if you need to get them sparkling clean. Once they’re dry, stack them neatly and put them back into storage until next time!
Step 9. Give it One More Polish Before Serving
After you’ve finished rinsing, give your wine glass one last wipe and polish with a microfiber cloth. This will help remove any residue that may still be left on your glass. Remember to always rinse a wine glass by holding it upside down to avoid water spots on it. Serve right away and enjoy!
If you’re frustrated by etched wine glasses, take a deep breath. There are a few ways to remove etching from wine glasses, and it’s best to start by looking at your tools and materials. Because each type of glass reacts differently when etched, there isn’t one guaranteed solution.
The easiest way to remove etching from wine glasses is to try as many different methods as possible until you find something that works for you.
Consider what kind of wine glass you have: Is it made of lead crystal? If so, use warm water and mild soap—but not too much or your glass will be permanently etched! Did you fill your glass with an acidic beverage like orange juice?