Oops! How to Remove Heat Transfer Vinyl When You’ve Made a Mistake

You may be rushing to get a shirt completed as it is for someone you care about or for a deadline for a customer.

Either way, there’s a deadline, and you are doing your best to get the shirt completed by it.

Therefore, you quickly make the design, cut all the vinyl and lay it over your shirt, then you press into place.

Oops! How to Remove Heat Transfer Vinyl When You've Made a Mistake!

Yet when you look at your creation you have realized that you have made a mistake.

At this moment, you may want to panic and think that you need to start all over again.

However, you can save this shirt, as there are a couple of ways to remove heat transfer vinyl. 

In this article, we are going to give you the method to follow when you want to remove your heat transfer vinyl when you make a mistake. 

Removing Heat Transfer Vinyl

It is actually really easy to remove heat transfer vinyl when you have made a mistake.

Our method is very simple and also chemical free. You can also use this method to remove heat transfer vinyl that has been layered as well. 

It can be upsetting or frustrating when we make a mistake on a design that has taken up hours to create and arrange to our liking.

However, with this method you can correct those mistakes really easily, so that you don’t have to start from scratch again. 

It is important to note that this method is chemical free, because we are aware that certain people and children can be allergic or sensitive to particular chemicals.

Hence, you don’t want someone to have an allergic reaction to wearing a garment you made, as you used a chemical that they are sensitive to. 

Below, we have given you a detailed method and supplies list so that you no longer have to dread making a mistake with heat transfer vinyl. 

What You Will Need 

Overall, you will require  4 items to be able to remove heat transferable vinyl from your shirt. These include the following items. 

  • Razor Blade, or a pair of scissors.
  • Hot Iron.
  • Tweezers.
  • Plate.

In some instances, it may be handy to have the following items nearby, in case they are necessary. These are:

  • Rubbing Alcohol.
  • Goo Gone.
  • Petroleum Jelly.

Method: How To Remove Heat Transfer Vinyl From Your Clothes

Step 1

Turn the iron on and put it on the linen or cotton setting. Ideally, you want your iron to be as hot as possible.

However, if the item of clothing that your heat transfer vinyl is on, isn’t linen or cotton, then you should use the correct heat setting for that government.

You want your iron hot, but you don’t want the clothing to melt either.

Step 2

By being careful, place the item of clothing over the iron. You want to aim for the hot surface of the iron to be on the underside of where the unwanted vinyl is on your clothing. 

If it is a shirt, then you will have to put the iron inside the shirt.

However, as the iron is so hot, you need to be careful that you don’t burn yourself.

You may want to wear heat protective gloves if you are nervous about getting too close to the iron. 

Step 3

Put the section of the garment where the unwanted vinyl is over a plate, while still on the iron. Then pull the area tight.

Step 4

Step 4 is split into three different plans that you can try at this time. 

Plan A

While the garment is pulled tight on the iron, using your razor blade, or scissors, use a brushing motion over the vinyl.

This brushing motion should be quite gentle to pick the heat transfer vinyl away.

Start at the top of the vinyl you wish to remove and work your way down.

The vinyl should start to come away in chunks, but you need patience. 

After the vinyl has been heated for a while, you will notice that it will start to pick away much easier. At this point, you may want to swap to some tweezers.

With the tweezers, pull any remaining heat transfer vinyl away.

The tweezers help to keep your hands away from the heat of the iron. Also, it is important to keep your scissors clean by using rubbing alcohol. 

Plan B

This method is almost completely chemical free, however, in some situations you may need a bit of help if all the heat transfer vinyl hasn’t been removed by heat alone.

In this situation, we suggest that you use a bit of Goo Gone to help you remove that final bit of residue away. 

Goo Gone is a great option, as it has a much more pleasurable scene. However, there is another way, if you don’t feel comfortable using Goo Gone. 

Plan C

If you aren’t comfortable with Goo Gone, then petroleum jelly is the perfect chemical free alternative. The jelly to loosen the adhesive on the heat transfer vinyl. 

Use a pea sized amount of petroleum jelly to the area then, using a sensitive detergent, rub them into the garment using circular motions.

This will then cause the adhesive on the vinyl to begin to clump together.

When this happens, you should take the garment off the iron and wash the area using the hottest temperature of water that the garment recommended. The jelly and detergent will wash away. 

You should repeat this step until all the residue has been removed from the garment. Hence, hand-washing is the best option for this method.

Step 5

After all the heat transfer vinyl and its residue has been removed.

You need to wash the piece of clothing, then after that you can try to reapply your design. 

If you have used any chemicals on any part of the garment, then you should wait a minimum of 24 hours before trying to reapply any designs.

However, after 24 hours, you can start pressing your garment again with the dying that you wanted to create. 

Final Thoughts

It can be frustrating when your heat transfer vinyl design doesn’t work out exactly how you wanted it.

However, there is no need to get annoyed, as you have seen there is a way to remove heat transfer vinyl from your garment. 

We hope that you have found this article helpful and are more confident in removing heat transfer vinyl from your clothes.

It may take some patience, but it is possible, so no garments have to go to waste, if something goes wrong, again!

Michael Moore

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