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Removing Those Stupid Anti-Shoplifting Ink Tags

While I've never had this happen to me, I've known people who have bought clothes only to get home and find out the nitwit clerk didn't remove the impossible-to-remove ink tag. Thankfully, somebody figured out how to remove them. Thanks Al for the tip.

Posted by Jake on 11/29/06 @ 04:30 PM
Posted in Cool | 11 Comments | Permalink


thedren said on 11/29/06 @ 08:39 PM:
All you really need to remove one of these is a strong magnet. Put it on the back side (the one inside the pants in the article) and the mechanism will release. That is all that is used at the store.

Nameless One said on 11/30/06 @ 08:12 AM:
I'm a clerk at a local retail store. I just want you know that I try hard to remember to take those tags off, but when I have 10 people in line and they are all grumbling that they have to wait, I get in a hurry and sometimes forget in my rush. You can always take the item back to the store and ask them to remove it, although the tag should have set off the security alarm at the door alerting you to its presence. Please have a little patience with us nitwit clerks, just as we try to have patience with our customers.

Keenuh said on 11/30/06 @ 01:40 PM:
I found one of those on a comforter once -- only I couldn't easily take it back, as I had bought it in Portland! The local Bon Marche wouldn't take it off for me, either, so I had to wait until my next trip over the pass to get it removed.

I was SO ticked off.

Nex said on 11/30/06 @ 04:33 PM:
what happened to me was much worse though, there was a little tag on the inside of the boots I bought at "Outdoor's" in Florida that kept on sounding the alarm at almost every store I walked into, including Publix and Wallmart. It took me weeks to find that little thing hidden in the shoe.

BobbiLynn May said on 12/18/06 @ 11:21 AM:
Aw, that sucks, man I guess that hasn't happened to me, but i buy like ALL of my clothes at thrift stores, so they only have those little tags, like stickers Hahaha

-BobbiLynn May

conz said on 12/21/06 @ 09:34 PM:
This worked like a charm. Thanks for linking that Jake.

Steve said on 06/21/07 @ 05:51 PM:
A hack saw works just fine. Just did it with great success after trying for 20 minutes with a very powerful magnet.

Nameless One said on 07/30/07 @ 07:51 AM:
Freeze the ink tag in the freezer then use two pairs of channel locks and break it apart. Freeze for at least 24 hours ( I use a deep freezer -10 degrees.

Pamela Hiple said on 03/30/09 @ 05:09 PM:
I understand that most Ink Tag liquid dye won't freeze.


Steve said on 02/14/10 @ 12:00 AM:
The "lighter method" works (see http://www.ehow.com/how_4618108_remove-ink-tags-clothes.html and http://sites.google.com/site/inktagremoval/home ) on the round alarming ink tags. I just did it, but it requires a little more explanation.

Just did the lighter method on a sweater from Macy's where they forgot to remove the tag. The steps above miss a part. There's a hard clear plastic cylinder surrounding the metal parts with the ball bearings. It's easiest to keep burning and scraping the cone away until you have enough clearance to pull the whole hard plastic cylinder out. Hold the two sides of the tag together while you do this and the ink cartridge won't break. Once you pull out the plastic surrounding (I was able to cut it with a knife and then pull it out with needle-nose pliers in a few parts), it's easy to then pull out the metal part with the ball bearings, and the bearings fall right out. There's another metal surrounding part that slides right off the pin, and then the two halves pull right open. I'm still not sure what exactly would break open the ink cartridge, since it's not connected to any of the interior mechanism. I'm assuming it just breaks if you try to pull the two halves of the tag apart by force. So as long as you hold the halves of the tag together, I think you can probably do anything to the inside without risking an ink explosion.

Nameless One said on 12/23/14 @ 03:23 PM:
I used a bech grinder and had it off in less than amminute.

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