There is no such thing as an all-encompassing surface cleaning solution. No matter the brand, ingredients, or celebrity endorsements. You can't buy the same product to clean glass and expect it to get rid of mold on sanded grout. Seek help for your Windex obsession, and learn a thing or two from this article. I will guide you on how to best clean bathroom surfaces the easy and right way.
Clean your bathroom with confidence. For your shower, tub, and tile, the first thing you need to do is determine the material you are cleaning. Certain cleaners can scratch or cause rust to appear on certain surfaces. Buy yourself some spray bottles and here’s all you need to know.
Porcelain — The best way for cleaning porcelain tubs, tile, toilets and sinks is with an abrasive powder and a scouring pad or pumice stone. You can sprinkle the powder, add a little water to make a paste, and let it sit for a few minutes. Then take your scouring pad or pumice stone and scrub tough stains and throughout the surface. Some common brands for scouring powder are AJAX®, Comet® and Soft Scrub®. Rinse and watch it sparkle.
Acrylic/Enamel — First, a word of caution: never use bleach products to clean acrylic surfaces. When bleach reacts with acrylic, the unfortunate result is rust-like stains. Oops. If you need to remedy this mistake, combine two parts baking soda to one part hydrogen peroxide. Spread the paste on the stains, allow to work for 30-60 minutes, then use a SOFT sponge and warm water to remove.
For acrylic or enamel surfaces, your best bet is to get into the habit of spraying a mixture of vinegar and water onto the surface every week and rinse with warm water. This prevents the build-up of water stains (which then trap dirt and other nasty things). But what if you haven’t done that and have a dingy mess on your hands? Well, use off-the-shelf, bleach-free bathroom surface cleansers and a soft sponge.
Ring around the tub? Try using a wash cloth and hair shampoo after each bath. Shampoo is made to clean through human oils and, yessiree, that’s what that nasty ring is!
Ceramic — For the most part, ceramic tiles can be maintained by regularly spraying with a warm water and vinegar mixture. This will prevent mildew build-up. For a deep clean, use a 50/50 ammonia and water mixture, spray the surface and then wipe with a soft-bristled brush. Rinse with clean water. Be sure to have good ventilation any time you use ammonia!
If you have rust spots on your ceramic tiles, you can get rid of these by pouring kerosene directly to a soft rag and then spot cleaning the stains. Rinse with warm water.
Grout — For small grout stains, use a pink pencil eraser. For larger areas, that method could get a bit tedious, so instead make a paste with baking soda and water. Apply with a toothbrush and rinse with water. If you’re careful not to get the tiles, you can spray a mixture of 75% bleach and 25% water and scrub grout with a toothbrush. Once the grout is clean, apply a grout sealer to keep it that way!
Mirrors — The best mirror and glass cleaner is a homemade one! Combine ½ cup of rubbing alcohol with ¼ tsp of liquid dish detergent in a spray bottle. Then use crumpled up newspaper or paper coffee filters instead of paper towel. Your mirror should be shiny and streak-free and ready for you to take your selfies. Don't throw away your store-bought cleaner though because it has a bunch of random uses!
Shower doors — If you are tempted to hide your glass shower door behind a shower curtain because you'd be mortified if anyone saw the film on it, then banish that thought from your mind and grab your spray bottle. Here is the best, easiest way to remove soap scum and water stains from your shower doors. Combine equal parts warm vinegar (just microwave it til warm) and liquid dish detergent in a spray bottle. My spray bottle held two cups, so I did one cup of each. Spray on the shower door and wipe down with a sponge. Voila!
Invest in some spray bottles and enjoy your clean bathrooms! Please share your own tips and tricks with us in the comments!
By Bridget Gorman Wendling