Sure tips for keeping showers & shower curtains clean

July 28, 2015

How can the shower — the place where you clean yourself — get so dirty? Nowhere, save for the kitchen sink, does a home show grime more than in the shower. Soap, shampoo and dirt from the shower's temporary occupants combine to make an unsightly mess.But you can keep them clean. Here’s how.

Sure tips for keeping showers & shower curtains clean

1. To keep your shower sparkling

  • Next time you shower, clean the shower, too. The steam from your shower will help loosen any grime and make the job easier.
  • For tiled shower walls and floor, use dishwasher detergent (either powder or liquid will do). Mix 50 ml (1/4 cup) of dishwasher detergent with warm water in a small pump spray bottle and shake to dissolve the detergent.
  • Spray liberally on walls, let it sit for two to three hours and then scrub with a sponge.
  • Use a sponge mop to scrub high spots and the floor.

2. To clean tile grout

  • Make a paste of baking soda and bleach (add bleach to the powder until it's a thick paste).
  • Smear the paste on with a spatula.
  • Air dry for an hour and then scrub with a toothbrush and water. (Never use ammonia nearby, since ammonia and bleach create a poisonous gas when mixed.)
  • To prevent water spots, rub the shower walls and doors with a squeegee right after you have a shower. If you don't have a squeegee, an old wiper blade will do.
  • Or try a daily shower cleaner (available from supermarkets).
  • Spray surfaces right after you shower, while the walls are still warm and wet. The shower cleaner will prevent deposits from forming on shower walls and will wash down the drain the next time you take a shower.

3. To clean your shower doors

  • Wash them with white vinegar to remove soap scum.
  • Alternatively, use leftover white wine that's rapidly turning to vinegar, empty it into a trigger spray bottle and squirt it on your shower doors. Rinse well with water and dry with a soft cloth.
  • Wipe down the doors with a solution of washing soda and water on a damp cloth. Buff with a clean, dry cloth.
  • Another way to keep soap scum away is to wipe down the shower doors with lemon oil.
  • Baby oil works too, as does furniture polish, buffed with a soft cloth. This also works on tiled showers, but don't put these slippery substances on a shower floor.
  • Scrub shower door runners with white toothpaste and an old toothbrush. Brush with vinegar to rinse.
  • Or, dip a stiff-bristled paintbrush in vinegar and scrub the runners thoroughly.
  • To keep runners from growing a bumper crop of mildew, run the head of a small sponge paintbrush along the bottom runner channels after you've finished showering.

4. To remove soap film on a plastic shower curtain

  • Place curtain in the washing machine with two or three large bath towels.
  • Add 125 ml (1/2 cup)of vinegar and wash, removing it before the spin cycle.
  • Hang it up straight afterwards to dry.
  • If mildew is out of control, use 175 ml (3/4cup) of chlorine bleach instead.
  • To avoid that soapy build-up on the bottom of the shower curtain, rub it with baby oil.
  • Always keep a shower curtain unfurled to give the fuzzy stuff a less inviting place to grow.

5. Easy come, easy go

  • Frustrated by stubborn grout grunge? If you've tried other methods to no avail, put on some rubber gloves for protection and spray on some oven cleaner.
  • Wipe the cleaner off with a sponge within five seconds, and then rinse thoroughly with water.
  • Make sure the bathroom is well ventilated when you do this.
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