The Best Way to Clean Your Bathtub.

Period.

Before I begin this story, let me show you the bottom of my shower. Don't look if you're squeamish. . . . I know, right? Nasty.

It's been like that since I moved into this apartment and nothing has been able to help it (don't even ask about the carpet.) I've tried a ton of different cleaners on that tub and even let it soak in straight bleach for a few hours: the results were patchy at best.

So I figured if I found a frugal and/or natural cleaner that actually worked on this kind of grime, it would be a great contribution to world cleanliness.

Tonight, I staged a science experiment. Here's what I used to try to clean my shower:
  • Half a grapefruit and some kosher salt. Completely ineffective. But it smelled nice.
  • Dishsoap. Nada.
  • Baking Soda. It seemed to work a little, mainly by abrasion.
  • Baking Soda and Vinegar. Adds drama to your cleaning routine, but not terribly effective.
  • 20 Mule Team Borax. Dude. This is the stuff.
I actually tried borax third and had to stop so I had dirt left to try my other ideas on.

That stubborn dirt and grime, impervious to bleach and every mainstream cleaner I tried, just melted away when faced with borax and a stiff-bristled scrub brush.

And you can't get much cheaper, either!


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What are your favorite frugal cleaning tips?

Shared at: Liz Marie: Clean It Link Party!





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Comments

Debbie said…
I tried the Borax on my tube and it cleaned like any other cleaner and did not get the yellow hard water build up that settles around the drain and under the spout off at all. It didn't clean the dirt grim around the tub very well either. So I think this may be an advertisment for Dwan soap. I'm a little hesitant about pinterest pinners when it comes to things like this anyway being that I've tried several and no worky. Maybe it depends on what material the tub is made off who knows. Sorry folks. Just being honest.
Debbie said…
Borax did not work for me! Sorry just being honest.
Who sells Borax? I need some of this stuff!
Brittany said…
I searched pinterest for a shower floor that looked like mine to know what to get that yuck up after 2.5 years. Hoping it works!
Marissa Deen said…
I'm sure any WalMart should :) In with the laundry detergents.
Unknown said…
I read these posts this morning and decided to do my own experiment. I went and bought Borax for $3.38, Low Odor Oven cleaner for $2.25, and The Works toilet bowl cleaner for $1.25.
I used each in a different area of my badly stained textured shower floor. I applied each, scrubbing the Borax a little to cover the area thoroughly. I waited for 2 hours and rinsed them all away. The only clean area was the place where I used the Borax. But since I had scrubbed that Borax area I thought it was an unfair comparison. So I applied the other two cleansers again to the original spots and scrubbed them. Then I let them set for an hour. I scrubbed each area again before I rinsed them off. There was no significant difference in the Oven Cleaner and The Works areas. So I went back and cleaned the whole thing again with Borax and I want to jump for joy!! You can bet that this little jewel has earned a treasured spot in my utility closet!! Anybody need a can of Oven Cleaner or a bottle of The Works??
Anonymous said…
I like my baking soda paste better. just spread it on and let dry 4 to 6 hours. then just rinse down. don't get in tub or shower as very slippy. no smell
Anonymous said…
I used baking soda, peroxide and lemon juice on my acrylic tub and it worked great! I had stubborn stains I could get out and this did the trick. I also cleaned my drain so well the water now empties out of the tub faster. Make sure when you mix it together that you do it in the tub as it will quickly fizz up.
Cathy York said…
A preventative tip: don't use bar soap! It's really hard on your skin (it's made with lye, otherwise known as sodium hydroxide), and the talc in it is what makes it stick to tile, bathtubs, and shower doors and curtains. Liquid skin cleansers/body washes don't have either lye or talc in them: two birds killed with (lack of) one stone :)
chrysti198 said…
I use a non-scratch scouring pad to clean,my shower. It is a 3M product, but there are cheaper options out there as well. I also use a mixture of vinegar and dish soap to clean everything in my house. I fill a spray bottle with vinegar and add quite a lot if dish soap, then use it to clean all the surfaces in my home that I used to use bleach and/or all purpose cleaners on.

For windows, the best tip I was every given was to use two microfiber cloths. You dip one into warm water with a little soap, then wring it out as much as you can, so it's just damp. Wipe down your window or mirror, or even metal surfaces, then buff with the other, dry cloth. It leaves your windows amazingly shiny and streak free, much better than any winded or other window product I have ever used!
Anonymous said…
We wrap a towel around the corners of the tub, where the hard water stains are tricky to get too, then pour vinegar on it. After sitting while we are out for the day, it comes right off.
Susan Stitch said…
I've found that magic erasers do a GREAT job with soap scum on the sides and wall of the tub!
Anonymous said…
yes I agree, the erasers are excellent.
I use borax in my pool to keep the ph correct. It works great and it's a mineral.
Adrienne said…
I use white vinegar for water spots and mineral deposits. Soak a rag and let set over tough spots for about 10 minutes. CLR also does a good job. I did not think borax worked as well.
amanda said…
I found "the works" toilet and shower cleaner combo at Big Lots for about $3 and that is the greatest cleaner on earth! But I will be buying borax as well :)
Kimberly said…
Why would you use Dawn and vinegar? One is an acid and one an base and they neutralize each other. I would use one or the other, but never both unless you want to waste money. It is simple chemistry. Both work great on bathtub stains. Dawn is the best of the two IMHO. The reason it "works" for anyone is because they aren't using equal amounts that cancel each other out, so one still has cleaning power. As for vinegar on any stone, it will etch stone or glass. Don't so it. Use a base (or soap/detergent.)
Anonymous said…
Great ideas, my fiberglass shower seat has orange stains from our prior tenants I can't seem to remove. Have tried magic eraser, dawn/vinegar and bath cleansers with no luck. Any suggestions? Thanks
Anonymous said…
People My son & husbands fiberglass shower tubb was covered with soap scum & it was getting mildew from the air conditioner blowing in there. I tackled mine today, first sprinkled a load of Ajax cleaning power all over & went out & got the big guns, My husbands mouse sander, You cut a scotch brite pad to fit the sander & let her rip. It cut through the big stuff easily especially the textured bottom of the tub. I rinsed the whole thing down & then heavily sprayed the tub with scrubbing bubble & then hand scrubbed the tub with the scrubbing bottles & a scotch brite pad. I have got to say this is the cleanest I think this tub has ever come cleant. Try it
Anonymous said…
I always find that the Magic Eraser will remove almost any type of bathroom stain.
Anonymous said…
anyone know anything about getting a water stain our of my couch?
Veterkins said…
Be careful using scrubbers in your showers and tubs. Mom used them and bleach in her tub for years. They take the finish off. When you "hard" clean your tubs and showers; be sure to wax them when you are done. Ordinary car wax works like a charm to put a good finish back on them that will help to keep them clean.
Anonymous said…
I use 1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol, dawn, and water in a spray bottle, works great for granite.
Liz said…
For Fleas and other pests and also safe for pets and kids Diatomatious Earth, drys the suckers right up if they are in the carpet (the brush in and vacum out method for this too) You can find it in Hardware stores and garden centers
Anonymous said…
You may be able to buy online, although i have seen it at Costco at times. Here's the link to their site. If your state isn't on there you can also give them a shout. https://pinksolution.ca/WhereToBuy/buyOnline.php

I have used it for years, I found that it is very concentrated and will make a lot of product so read the instructions for the ratio of water etc. I also found since it's so thick, you have to melt down a goop of it and add your water (so little wastage!) and it also works on mechanics grease covered hands. Great for laundry etc.
Anonymous said…
I had the same problem with my tub. A contractor I hired to fix my floor by the tub told me to use Snow-Bowl. I did and it worked. I had tried Lime Away and everything else and couldn't get it clean from hard-water stains. He also told me to use car wax on the tub after it was clean to prevent future build up. Didn't try that, but I think it would have worked.







Lisa Hejny said…
I just tried it on our tub that's been stained for about four years. It worked!
M. Brothers said…
New Harmony Green.......For anything greasy I use Stanley Products Degreaser. You can get it online. It works on greasy hands, laundry stains, greasy pots and pans, and I had to use it to get lipstick off carpet when my daughter was small. Works great and should get the grease out of your tub!
Kym Lamb said…
Thank you soooo much. I work for a property management company and can not tell you how much easier you just made out life!
Whovian Gran said…
Info on the toxicity of borax is available at about.com. Ingestion of 5 grams is lethal to small child or pet.
Anonymous said…
Easy off sounds a bit harsh.. And scary to try. I just used up the last of my borax in my wash. That is another excellent use for it. I work in a fillty mill and get grease on my clothes. It takes a bit of a presoak, but works!
Anonymous said…
The Show Was Deth Valley Days, Ronald Ragon
Anonymous said…
Sorry, Death Valley Days. 'Raygun Ronnie'
Anonymous said…
I'll have to try this, thanks! Fall is here and the spiders have/are moving in. :( You could also put tea tree oil in a spray bottle with water and spray your walls where they like to hang out. Spiders apparently taste with their feet and don't like the taste of tea tree oil. Maybe this is why they don't cross the Borax line, either.
Virginia said…
I am so grateful for all the tips and information. Thank you all and God bless you.
Anonymous said…
low pH is acidic, high pH is basic
Anonymous said…
an enzymatic cleaner will help w the pee. u want something that will break down the ammonia & therefore the ammonia odor. if u use more ammonia it will set the ammonia smell in further. if it is a baby/toddler peeing, they wont go back to remark, lol. But if it is a pet, the ammonia will continue the pee cycle.
Anonymous said…
can u use Pink Solution on Marble. We moved into a house with Well Water and lots of Iron in the water. I feel like i have the Perfect Storm for a lifelong headache! seems u cant use anything on marble. then the iron in the well water complicates it even more. ANY help wld be wonderful!!!!!
Anonymous said…
The vinegar and Dawn dish soap tip did nothing for my porcelain tub....
Anonymous said…
Not sure if leaving on long enough...my tub looks the same. Do u use on try tub and how long do you leave it sit.
Anonymous said…
Not sure if leaving on long enough...my tub looks the same. Do u use on try tub and how long do you leave it sit.
Anonymous said…
I clean homes for a living. Borax is awesome but I used The Magic Eraser on a shower floor that had the same look as your tub. It took 2 of the Erasers for Bath and showers, to get it all but the owners were thrilled!
Anonymous said…
spray some rain ex (sp?) on shower doors and walls.. lol it helps prevents build-up from sticking :0)
Alli said…
I have found that 2 parts baking soda to 1 part hydrogen peroxide, made into a paste, applied, and let sit for a few hours will bring all of those icky things right out!
Anonymous said…
hey T go back to school..lol low ph is a base not an acid dummy :-)
Anonymous said…
Borax is also an excellent antifungal. Just another bonus.
Anonymous said…
Just tried borax in the sink in my bathroom and it was amazing!! I am a believer! thanks for such a good tip. It was quick and easy. Next target: bathtub!
Anonymous said…
Anyone found something for Granite, that will leave it shiny?
Anonymous said…
To remove soap scum, use CLR cleaner. It's great on chrome and stainless steal and stone countertops, too. I spray it on everything in the kitchen and just wipe them down. It works instantly.
Michelle said…
I would love to see an after picture. Thanks for the tip, I'm going to give Borax a shot. I have a new shower and I want to keep it looking pristine for a long time.
Anonymous said…
table salt also works for fleas. just sprinkle it on your carpets, leave for a day. The fleas will eat the salt and when the salt expands it will kill the fleas. Vacume the next day and, voila, the fleas are gone!
Anonymous said…
I'm an old fart and have been using Borax for way too long...since it was a tv commercial during an old western called Wagon Train. It's just a natural product (boron) but it's wonderful for SOOO many things!

First of all it will get red clay out of white baseball pants! It's a whitener and disenfectant for laundry. I always add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup to every load no matter what I am washing.

I sprinkle it on carpet and rugs to rid of bugs and odors.

I sprinkle it outside around windows and sliding doors to keep ants from coming in the house. Cheap ground black pepper works as well.

I also spray hydrogen peroxide on carpets and rugs to get rid of pet "output" odors and clean up stains. It's never taken the color out of my real "oriental" rugs.

The cheapest way to keep all drains running clear is to buy the least expensive bleach you can find (which usually works better than Clorox anyway) and pour about 1/4 jug in each drain once a month. TADA! It eats hair, soap scum, etc.

Walmart sells Borax for about $1.50 less than Kroger! It's always found near the clothes detergents or with the powdered "liquid bleach alternatives."

Another great product is "Awesome" which I buy at either Family Dollar or General Dollar. In my old age I've come to realize that just because it's expensive or costs more doesn't make it a better product.

And Magic Erasers? The generic ones work, too. Those things are da bomb! I swear it took dried up red nail polish off a painted wall! My son uses them to keep his tennis shoes white. I use them to clean the straps on my Birkies.

To clean jewelry mix hot water, Dawn and a little ammonia. Shake well and use an old toothbrush. Then rinse. Sparkling clean!!

I could go on and on but I have work to do as that is what I get to do! lol
jayjolou said…
I'm glad to read about Borax (I remember seeing it in ads when I was a kid), but need to find out if it's something I'm allergic to; I have so many chemical allergies, my doctor gave up testing me, LOL. Cleaning has always meant baking soda, never chemicals, so isn't always easy.
Thanks for the great tips from so many of you.
Anonymous said…
When I need to really clean the tub, I use a pumice stone. Works great. I am going to use Borax soon.
Michele Clarke said…
Guess again about Mr Clean being non toxic
http://mbella77.blogspot.com/2013/01/melamine-sponge.html
Anonymous said…
First of all, thank you for posting this. I am in my second living space with a tub that I simply could not get clean. My vote goes to the warm vinegar with Dawn drizzled in. That mixture really, really works! Before you start be sure to open a window and get a towel to kneel on, because once the scrubbing starts you will be addicted to watching it melt away. This past week I got Borax from the store and am less amazed at its effectiveness. I tried cleaning the hard water stains in my toilets with it but didn't see them decrease even a little. I also scrubbed my tub with it, but don't see what the fuss is about. Perhaps it is still too clean from the vinegar/Dawn from 2 weeks ago.
Unknown said…
Got dish soap and baking soda on hand, so I am giving this a try... if not, I will hit all the local stores looking for Borax!
Anonymous said…
Turtle wax or any kind of car wax should work too.
Mallory said…
Can you use this on linoleum floors? Any other uses? If I'm buying a 5 lb. box, I want to use it! :)
Mallory said…
Can you use this on linoleum floors? Any other uses? If I'm buying a 5 lb. box, I want to use it! :)
Anonymous said…
These products work well throughout the house. I can pretty much clean my entire house with just the intercare cleaner, and soap scum remover, (which is a DREAM!)Plus, I love that there's no fumes, and its eco friendly, and it REALLY WORKS! Its on Www.Marblelife.com OH! The maxout cleaner worked GREAT for my driveway, and patio pavers too! Really the best brand of cleaners I've EVER found!
Anonymous said…
PLEASE STOP USING VINEGAR ON MARBLE!!! I can't believe all of the people who think this is IN ANY WAY, a good idea!!! I own a cleaning company, and Ive spent WAY too much money on REPLACING MARBLE that was FADED from the repeated use of marble by my maid service. I got in touch with the Marble Institute of America,(MIA)and they actually recommended Marblelife Products on ANY TYPE of natural stone. I've saved THOUSANDS, and haven't looked back!
Anonymous said…
problem with magic erasers is that they are laden with formaldehyde :(
Anonymous said…
Mr Clean Eraser sponges work GREAT in the shower. It wipes soap scum away.
Kathy said…
Tough and Tender from Melaleuca works on natural stone, granite, marble without scratching. Great products from that company all the way around and they are safe around pets and kids because they're green.
copperman said…
All this talk of cheap chemicales .borax..vinager..castle soap.. please this is why the shine is gone from your bathtub and tile... I called the best of manufacture the kohler who has been in business since thev1800's and They actually answer the phone with a customer service rep I explained by problem not being able to clean the bottom of my bathtub and how gross it was.Well she said they recommend the rog3 express cleaner
She explained the invented of the safeguard makes a very special cleaner for this problem. So she said call his 800 # and I did , reached the owner of the company and ordered the product. Got it a week later and OMG could not believe after so many years of useing many cleaners I finally found a cleaner that noy only cleaned the entire tub but it brought back the shine on my porcelain tub. Call him your self, hrs really a nice person concerned about your problem His number is. 800585 – 2325
copperman said…
Be good maybe good for roaches but not for the bottom of your bathtub try the ROG3 cleaner kohler recommends this cast iron cleaner
copperman said…
I called the bathtub manufacture What bathtub cleaner to use They told me to call the inventor of the cleaner at one 800 – 585 – 2325 Well I did and I reached a really nice man on the phone help me and walk me through the process I recommend everyone call him and talk to him As he has specific cleaner for cast iron tubs
copperman said…
Borax will ruin the finish of the bathtub of my gosh Try ROG three bathtub cleaner Works great
copperman said…
It's called a granite sealer called Ager you can buy that at any granite supply house It will darken and seal the granite
Anonymous said…
Growing up in the piney woods of southeast Texas, we also made up little balls of Borax to kill roaches. Don't know the exact recipe, but it was like little balls of dough. And we had to keep them away from the cats & dogs. :) So much for those "safe" natural products, huh?
Unknown said…
Borax is the bomb! Had a box. No odor...still have lots of scrubbing to do but can see bottom of tub. Thanks for the time-saving tip!
Anonymous said…
I have arthritis and had pretty much given up on a clean tub. Then I tried your borax hint. (I found it at Walmart for less than $4.) It's amazing and EASY.
If you can't get on your hands and knees, then sit on an upended bucket or stool in the tub.
Nicky Stevenson said…
I'm not sure how bad it is for you, but I live in the UK and they've banned it here. We can only get Borax substitute now.
Anonymous said…
Wax paper works WONDERS for water spots and finger prints!!!
Anonymous said…
I'm going to try the Borax tomorrow--but by the way, Ronald Reagan was the narrator of Death Valley Days. That's how old I am! Long before his political career began!
Marsha Becker said…
For my tub I use liquid dishwasher soap and leave it on for about 1/2 hour. Then rinse off. It was GREAT! No scrubbing. Also... borax for fleas... I have an old steam machine (one of those small ones for carrying around). I know you're not supposed to put cleaning agents in them but I needed a really light application and decided water was the way to go with it. Boiling it makes it dissolve completely. I needed to get rid of the fleas more than I cared what happened to that machine. I just filled it up with a borax/water solution and sprayed the house down with it. Not enough to make things wet, but it's important that you don't use too much or they'll just walk around it when it dries. So far, NO FLEAS! I found out by doing this that the reason the flea treatments on the cats didn't seem to be working beyond a week was that the darn fleas have been breeding in my furniture and carpet and jumping back on the cats. I did the one treatment on the carpet a week ago and no problems so far! You can look up the solution online and apply it with a spray bottle if you don't have a steamer. I haven't checked my steamer to see if it still works but i ran it completely dry so I don't think I ruined it. I am one happy girl right now!
Andee72xxx said…
I had stains that would not come out of my carpet through 3 shampooings. I used Clorox wipes in the yellow jug and every single stain came out!!
carebear56560 said…
I use the borax to deep scrub; but I keep one of those dish scrubbers that holds the dish soap in the handle and scrub sponge on the end filled with dish soap and vinegar 50/50 mix. Every time you shower go over everything with it and it keeps it nice and clean.
great laundry soap is
1 bar fells naptha grated
1 bar castile soap grated
2 cups washing soda
2 cups borax
need 1 tablespoon per load and can be used in the barrel of a HE machine. Add 1 cup vinegar in your rinse cycle instead of fabric softener; it rinses out soap better and naturally softens cloths. Fabric softener will attract stains and make them harder to get out.
Unknown said…
For a fiber glass tub, easy a spa glove and baby oil. Grease, grime and dirt slide right off. Frequent rinsing of glove. Warning: Your tub will be very slippery afterward. I always forget to tell hubby!! ;)

Unknown said…
For a fiber glass tub, easy a spa glove and baby oil. Grease, grime and dirt slide right off. Frequent rinsing of glove. Warning: Your tub will be very slippery afterward. I always forget to tell hubby!! ;)

Shirley said…
Mitch T, Do you have to keep your cats off the Borax-treated carpet until you vacuum?
Unknown said…
I actual discovered how effective borax can be when I used my bathtub to soak some white curtains in the stuff. Everything was gleaming white fron the water line down. And that was without scrubbing or any other action than to drain the rub.
Unknown said…
I actual discovered how effective borax can be when I used my bathtub to soak some white curtains in the stuff. Everything was gleaming white fron the water line down. And that was without scrubbing or any other action than to drain the rub.
Melodie said…
Umm vinegar is a nuetral ph so it is the best thing to use,I 'm sorry but as a 20 year cleaning professional you should know that. Tis correct anything with a low ph is an acid.
Unknown said…
Awesome works got it at the dollar store with a medium or soft bristle brush.

Unknown said…
I been trying to find something to clean the tub in my apartment.
I'm going to try this as soon as possible.
Thank you for your post.
Unknown said…
I found that on glass shower doors for soap scum and mineral anythingvon glass...hand full of table salt rubbed by hand on the wet glass works! I love it. Tiles try tilex
WomenOnAMission said…
I just stumbled across your site and all I can say is THANK YOU!!! I have struggled with my bathtub for years! Scrubbing would wear me out and many times I would just leave the floor of my bathtub for another day. And we all know what that means! I would leave it for any day other than the one I was on. Anyway, Borax is king! I put it on my tub and without much effort, it was clean! Don't get me wrong, you have to put some elbow grease into it, but the results are quick and successful. Thank you again for your experiment. You have saved me so much time!!!
√Ďape said…
WHAT IS A MAGIC ERASER?????
WHERE CAN I FIND IT?
Unknown said…
The active ingredient in Borax for insecticide purposes is boric acid. Borax has detergent in it, too. My cat got the Borax on his paws and transferred it to his eyes. They were red and swollen. Just get boric acid from a pharmacy or many grocery stores. It's harmless to pets, deadly to fleas. And cheap.
Anonymous said…
Does work wonders on fleas. Heard it dehydrates them and they die, including eggs. I sprinkle all over house when I go on vacations. Fleas love to multiply in hyper speed when left unattended. Now when I get home no fleas anywhere! Has never hurt my dog or cat. Put under sofa cushions, rugs, furniture and around baseboards where carpet meets walls. I think it must take care of many bugs, I never have any creepy crawlies in my house!
I sprinkled the borax in the yard to remove the flea problem..my pets were indoor pets, but the dirt yard made fleas a nightmare...one it started killing off the outside ones, the indoor ones became les and less...plus if you put a bowl of water on a piece of white printer paper, they are attracted to the white and jump right in the water ;)
I sprinkled the borax in the yard to remove the flea problem..my pets were indoor pets, but the dirt yard made fleas a nightmare...one it started killing off the outside ones, the indoor ones became les and less...plus if you put a bowl of water on a piece of white printer paper, they are attracted to the white and jump right in the water ;)
I sprinkled the borax in the yard to remove the flea problem..my pets were indoor pets, but the dirt yard made fleas a nightmare...one it started killing off the outside ones, the indoor ones became les and less...plus if you put a bowl of water on a piece of white printer paper, they are attracted to the white and jump right in the water ;)
Unknown said…
THANK YOU FOR SUCH A WONDERFUL BLOG WITH SO MUCH INFO PACKED IN IT!

Thank you for such a wonderful Blog that has so much info packed in it.
Know that it and all the contributors are greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
Ash said…
Thanks for the tip it worked like a charm !
Unknown said…
Toilet bowl cleaner will ruin your tub drain. It will eat the pipe away. Tub drains are a different material from the pipe going out of your toilet.
Unknown said…
I use comet cleanser for everything bathroom. If u work it into a thick paste, and rub it on the whole tub, making sure to pay attention to those stubborn stains, u then let it sit overnight. It dries out and attaches to the dirt and stains. U then just gently rub it off with a damp sponge. It has worked great for me for many years. I even amazed my brother and sister in law on their tub once.
Unknown said…
I use comet cleanser for everything bathroom. If u work it into a thick paste, and rub it on the whole tub, making sure to pay attention to those stubborn stains, u then let it sit overnight. It dries out and attaches to the dirt and stains. U then just gently rub it off with a damp sponge. It has worked great for me for many years. I even amazed my brother and sister in law on their tub once.
Unknown said…
I use comet cleanser for everything bathroom. If u work it into a thick paste, and rub it on the whole tub, making sure to pay attention to those stubborn stains, u then let it sit overnight. It dries out and attaches to the dirt and stains. U then just gently rub it off with a damp sponge. It has worked great for me for many years. I even amazed my brother and sister in law on their tub once.
eileensideways said…
simplify. the mister clean magic sponge really is magic. just wet it, wring it out and wipe away the dirty scum.
busymary said…
I used to be a distributor for Melaleuca as well. I tried and wanted so much to fall in love with the tub & tile. I do not agree that it is non-toxic, I could not use it in a closed room or would have coughing fits as it was so irritating to my lungs. Thanks but I will have to give the dawn and vinegar a try. I love how I would likely already have these items on hand rather than having to purchase another just for cleaning.
Miss Kitty said…
I will try all these wonderful cleaning solutions. What about hard water stains on the bottom of the shower, on the shower door and also behind faucets, that small space you hardly can get to?
Unknown said…
bathtub is painted. will this peel the paint?
Mariac0215 said…
I use 6 oz of the blue Dawn and u oz of vinegar. I heat the vinegar in the microwave for 90 seconds pour both into a large spray bottle. I cover the bottle and shake the bottle in the bath tub (there is a reaction where there is a lot of pressure in the bottle and it cstarts to spray out of the bottle ln it's own). The spary the tiles, tub, shower curtain, and mat. I let it sit for approximately 20 minutes. When I come back I lightly scrub with a brush the tile, tub and mat and rinse everything including the shower curtain. Everything is sparking clean. I have used everything prior to this and it never came out this clean with so little effort.
Twindall said…
Windex is great to clean granite countertops with. We just built a house and the Project Manager told us and I've been using it for months! Great on appliances too (not stainless steel though)
PS85QTekkids said…
If you were here I'd hug you!!! I'm so sick and tired of having to clean the tub behind everybody else in this house!!!
Gleanne Marie said…
I'm sure you are OVER the bathtub comments by now, however.... Can I just say one thing? Sister, can we all vote not to tell our partners how easy this is? I was AMAZED. You have totally made my evening. I was prepared to spend an hour scrubbing away at the Mystery Stains in the tub, and ta da - 3 minutes later I was rinsing the darn thing out and am now wondering what to do with my remaining 57 minutes.... Make guacamole and grab a glass of wine? DONE! :)
Anonymous said…
It's funny really - you spend your whole life buying chemical cleaners because that's just "what you do" and then you read posts like this and everything changes... the simple things can be so good sometimes!

Just wanted to say thanks - I've been doing my best to be far more frugal recently. The birth of my 2nd wasn't half as scary as the first... I feel like I can be a good housewife as well as mamma - fingers crossed! One of the things I used to do was use professional oven cleaners. I can't say a bad word about them to be honest, at my various houses over the years I've had them in every few months. I'd been using oven cleaning sutton coldfield and oven cleaning solihull and I'm not ashamed to recommend them, however I am ashamed to say that it's only been recently that I even knew what the word frugal meant! So thanks again for posts like this to help me on my way to being a better stay at home mamma :) x
Unknown said…
I lived on a farm and we worked hard outside in pastures so tub got really dirty and also had minerals in the water.... Stain where water dripped looked like rust. I cleaned the tub with Lysol Foam Spray with some Comet and a sponge... I cleaned the rust spot with Lysol Toilet Bowl cleaned, squirt it on stain and run a little and rinse.... Eureka!!!! Gone!!!!!
Bryan Johnson said…
Have a very good blog. I really appreciate you for this good work keep it up. I definitely enjoying every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.

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hf said…
i am going to try this TONIGHT. am very excited. thank you for the post
Anonymous said…
I have a cleaning business...........and the magic eraser has had the homeowners singing my praises so far. BUT........I have a couple of homes that have an old claw-foot tub and the OLD white sinks. While the Magic Eraser has them incredibly impressed I've wanted to impress them even more by making them gasp in awe when they get home and see their sinks and tubs sparkle like new which is why I'm always looking for new realizations!!! I can't wait to try this. To sprinkle some Mule Borax and then see what the eraser can do. I'm so excited...........can't wait to try this. Just hoping I'm not gonna be disappointed. But thank you so much for the idea. Have used it in my laundry for years...........so thinking.................DUH!!! Wish me luck!!!! Hugs for the idea!!!!
Anonymous said…
I clean houses as a business Anonymous.........and I swear by the Magic Eraser. Unfortunately, I have a few houses that have OLD water spots and haven't been able to get them off after using the Eraser and buffing them with paper towels in hopes to make them shine. If anybody has any ideas that would help I'd love to hear from you. Please let me know: elccountry@yahoo.com!!! I'll be FOREVER GRATEFUL AND WILL FORWARD ANY "MIRACLES" I FIND IN RETURN!!!! THANKS IN ADVANCE!!!! WE ALL GOTTA STICK TOGETHER!!!!
Unknown said…
I recently read a blog on using oven cleaner on your tub...the original easy off spray not the newer scent. seemed crazy but I tried it......spray the tub surface and up the walls (if you have the molded type tub) wait 10 to 15 minutes and wipe off with a cloth or old towel. You won't believe it! no scrubbing. removes all the soap scum without any effort of scrubbing. you can run you fingers over the area you cleaned and it will be smooth as glass. not slippery or coated feeling. just smooth. I'm not sure about the shower doors but I would try it in a corner. I think the borax is great for the hard stains also. once you get it clean, try the oven cleaner to maintain it. :)
Unknown said…
Borax is awesome stuff. I will also keep roaches out of your apartment, especially if you live in one of those that keeps getting infested from your neighbors. Get a squirt bottle and get it down in window sills and baseboards, inside the closets, all the nooks and crannies, where ever you can find to put it. Won't hurt kids and pets, brushes off clothes.
Unknown said…
what about rust? will borax work or should i use the barkeepers helper?
ittyshell58 said…
I have not tried this yet, but i am confident it will work. I use borax in my homemade laundry soap and it does a wonderful job. Thanks for sharing this and will let you know how it goes.
Unknown said…
1/2 cup Vinegar, 1/2 cup water, & 1/2 cup rubbing alcohol makes a fantastic mirror, glass, counter, & tile cleaner. My little old lady neighbor told me about the combo and it works very well. Cleanest, brightest mirrors and windows!!!!
Kisses1965 said…
My tub grows penicillan everyday. I use a hand held steam cleaner. I am so ready for it to be remodeled.
Bravissimo said…
50/50 Borax & powdered sugar in jar with holes in cover, sprinkle in areas of entry...attracts ants, and they bring it back to their nest...takes care of the problem beautifully....DO NOT USE with children or pets in the house.
colorsmiths said…
Borax is not toxic. Like any other powdered product, you don't want to inhale the powder. But making a paste or solution with borax causes no toxicity issues of any kind.
colorsmiths said…
Marissa I used borax dissolved in water as a liqiud 'soap' and shampoo for two or three years. It was the only cleanser I used on me, and the only things I added to the borax for the house were vinegar and baking soda. Borax is not toxic, and when dissolved in water does a good job of cleaning. HOWEVER it is not a degreaser. I still use borax for my detox bath soaks: 1c each epsom salts, borax, and baking soda.
Unknown said…
I clean apartments the lady who lived there never cleaned her tub tub was plastic tons of minerals and filth

.I literally tried everything nothing worked.we we're just about to buy a new tub kit.
My friend told me she had been this desperate too on her tub she first cleaned out majority of grime with soft scuba and magic eraser clean it all completely out. Waited a day rinsed again and used the works for toilets.just on the mineral stains leave 20 minutes or so and pumus just the stains no other area as it may scratch. little by little it will come out. Use glove mask and open windows when you do this so you can breathe.
Want you to know tub worse than this one came sparkling clean in that nasty apartment.
Anonymous said…
Soap and water works wonders on granite. I used it on my counter tops. Method makes a very good product to clean and shine. I just use it to shine. Obviously, don't let anything sit too long before cleaning it up.
Unknown said…
I've been using borax in the tub for years and it's never let me down. And I can't believe the beautiful shine it leaves.
The only problem with Borax, that it is poisonnous...for humans, too. It can cause serious organ damages...
http://greencleaning.about.com/od/GreenCleaningResources/a/Is-Borax-A-Good-Green-Cleaning-Ingredient.htm
Susan said…
I tried borax this afternoon in response to your success. We own a rental and every time someone moves out the tub is disgusting. It worked like a dream and I didn't need a stiff brush. Thanks so much. I love cleaners that don't require a respirator.
Lynn said…
Table salt is also good for getting rid of fleas. Sprinkle into carpets, let sit for a couple of days. The salt dries the fleas up, Then vacuum the carpet. Worked for me!
Lynn said…
Table salt also works great at getting rid of fleas. Sprinkle into carpet and let it sit for several days. It will not hurt your animals. Salt dries out the fleas as they come in contact with it. Vacuum carpets,
Lynn said…
Table salt works great for getting rid of fleas in carpets. Sprinkle into carpets and let it sit for a couple of days. Vacuum carpets thoroughly. Salt dries out the fleas when they make contact with the table salt.
Chemical Billy said…
The black soil you see on the bottom of this tub is called sebum. It is the waxy oils our bodies product along with dirt. A great cleaning product that removes soap scum, scale and sebum is BioWorx shower cleaner. You can visit their web site via www.BioWorx.us
Chemical Billy said…
The black soil you see on the bottom of this tub is called sebum. It is the waxy oils our bodies product along with dirt. A great cleaning product that removes soap scum, scale and sebum is BioWorx shower cleaner. You can visit their web site via www.BioWorx.us
Chemical Billy said…
The dark stains on floors like bathrooms, showers and bathtubs are from sebum. Sebum is the waxy oils our bodies produce along with dirt and grime. Few household cleaners are effective at removing sebum. There is a new cleaning products manufacturer www.BioWorx.us Their shower cleaner effectively dissolves sebum, soap scum and scale. I especially love how it dissolves soap scum in seconds.
Gloria T said…
Scrubbing bubbles works great on soap scum on glass shower doors. Spray on, let it sit and scrub it off with a pot scrubber for Teflon pots (the green pad) Also, if you don't want soap scum, don't use bar soap! Use bath & shower gel. I have been in my townhouse for 10 years and have never used bar soap. I don't have soap scum and we have hard water here in Florida.
Patsy said…
Easy Off smell is so toxic and no one should be using that stuff for anything. No commercial cleaner that is not marketed as environmentally friendly is dangerous. Also, you have to remember Borax is also a chemical and breathing in the dust can be harmful.
Unknown said…
I use Borax under our camper to keep out mice and such during the off season, I just spread it around with a tablespoon.
I will definitely be trying this...my tub looks icky even though I know it's clean but I moved in to a filthy tub and tried leaving bleach in there for hours with no luck. Never thought of Borax.
Unknown said…
How do u use the dryer sheets
Unknown said…
How do u use the dryer sheets
Nana Beans said…
Ok I bought some borax soup, but how much do you use? and do you have to let it soak or just use elbow power. I'm wanting to clean the shower heads too, but wondering if you can use this on them also.
Unknown said…
Don't laugh because I do it the man way, After I clean my shower glass well and wipe it down dry, I about once a month apply a coat of auto wax and it seems to keep it clean longer.
Unknown said…
To clean the soap scum from your tub or shower, all you need is 1. a "Mr. Clean" eraser sponge and water. I use the one from the dollar store. Baby oil works good too. Ya'll are making a big deal out of nothing.
Unknown said…
I will try the Borax on my next bathroom cleaning....and on my white tile bathroom floor (UGH!) but.... I LOVE the magic eraser for my tub!!
Unknown said…
Where do you get the pink solution, pls?.
Unknown said…
The best method I've come up with? Get my husband to do it. OCD at it's finest :)
Unknown said…
What do you suggest I use to remove stains from my mattress?
toesockgrrl said…
You can also use Borax to keep the kids entertained while you clean... By making flubber with it. You can find the recipe at omsi.edu
toesockgrrl said…
You can also use Borax to keep the kids entertained while you clean... By making flubber with it. You can find the recipe at omsi.edu
Unknown said…
Magic eraser works really well with just a little elbow grease
Unknown said…
Magic eraser works really well with just a little elbow grease
Unknown said…
I have bad hard water mixed with dirt on my two fiberglass showers. How do you get the walls clean? Brush doesn't work very good on walls.
I have about scrubbed my arms off.
hannath said…
That is what my mom used to do when she lived on Florida. Once a week she would spindle borax on the carpet, broom it in, take the dog for a walk put the cat in the bathroom. When she got home she would vacuum and then let the animals loose. Never had a problem both cat and lived into their late teens.
Unknown said…
I can attest to the efficacy of Pink Solution. Good stuff.
Unknown said…
Since baking soda and vinegar make a good cleaning combo, did you try the borax and vinegar?
Unknown said…
To all with the carpet spots Super Purple is your friend ...put it in the shampooer and spray directly on heavy spots ...cleans wonderfully any color carpet...
Unknown said…
I love the tips on cleaning the tub and soap scum off shower doors...will def try. I would like to ask if anyone knows how to get mold out of a shower...the floor cracks where the caulking is and along the shower door. I moved and I have no idea how to do this. If anyone knows anything please help. I have tried bleach.
Unknown said…
Carol March - Zane Grey Theater????? I think!! LOL Happy Mother's Day to all the GREAT Moms out there getting it right!! :D
Unknown said…
Thanks guys please help on how to naturally clean a glass top stove without the special chemicals and special scrappers.
Unknown said…
Bathtubs are really difficult to clean when the grease stay into it. When that will happened, let it soak with soap solution for an hour and let it stay before brushing it.
Unknown said…
I have the same bath but with yellow spots, I use Comet with bleach and then wash it with a mixture of bleach and dawn diluted with a little water and work for at least a month that the spots come back, I have to do at least one once a month.
Unknown said…
Use 29 Mule team borax as a cleaner when you mop your floor, It will control ants and roaches
divaholic said…
I use MelaMagic and Tub and Tile from Melaluca for a no chemical cleaning spray on and wipe of no scrub brush involved.
Unknown said…
BORAX mixed with a little sugar will also attract ants and poison them :}
Unknown said…
A mixture of sugar and borax will attract and kill ants in and around the home. Also my dad has always put used coffee grounds around his foundation to keep the bugs out.
Unknown said…
For soap scum on shower doors, spray with W-D-40, works well, lasts along time also.
Anonymous said…
I just read an article about WD-40 and all of its powers...I haven't tried it yet for the hard water or soap scum but the article says that it works and is safe to use almost everywhere in your home
Anonymous said…
I just read an article about WD-40 and all of its powers...I haven't tried it yet for the hard water or soap scum but the article says that it works and is safe to use almost everywhere in your home
Tamaram55 said…
When I had babies and cloth diapers, I always put a cup of borax in each load of laundry, along with the soap. Kept everything white and smelling fresh! Now I use it for laundry loads that need an extra boost. I will DEFINITELY try it on my stubborn apartment tub! Thanks!
Anonymous said…
EASIER and faster.... use OVEN CLEANER! YES - "EasyOff"... Don't recommend using it on grout as it will soak in - but as for the rest of the ceramic or surround of any material - USE IT!
Unknown said…
Straight up warm white vinegar works great on tubs and doors. just microwave
Angel Rae said…
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this stuff. It's great for so very many things!!
windos53 said…
Woulld BORAX Clean Porcelain Sinks to take off A Brown Stain? I Read Coca Cola does the Job
Unknown said…
I clean condos where I live and I was wondering did you ever try a magic eraser? I know it works and takes all the dark footprint marks from tubs.
Judy said…
I had a new mini-van years ago and my husband laid a used transmission he had bought on the back floor, got transmission fluid all over the pale gray carpet. I tried something a friend told me, one gallon HOT water with 1/2 cup of dish washer detergent dissolved in it, with a scrub brush. I couldn't believe it but it took every bit of the fluid and some black grease out of the carpet and didn't ruin it. It was a little fluffy from the brush, but hey, it was clean.
Anonymous said…
I use Borax in my pool to keep the ph up. Works so much better the the Ph Plus they sell in the Pool supply store.
I can't wait to try it my tub.
Thanx for the tip !!!
Rachele T. said…
Salt works great for fleas and is safe if you have pets. If the flea problem is really bad it can take two applications. Just regular iodized salt, sprinkle on like you would carpet freshener. Let sit 30 minutes then thoroughly vacuum. Repeat or leave overnight for a second application if they are really bad.
Unknown said…
I have found that sevin garden dust is the best flea killer. It is completely non-toxic to pets and humans...even if it is ingested. You can sprinkle into carpet leave it for a day then vacuum up. You can even use it directly on pets. It works by scratching the shell bodies of insects and they dehydrate and die. I would be really cautious of putting borax in my carpet.
Jen said…
Thank you!! It's WAY cheaper buying it on ebay than in the store!
South Jersey Doc said…
Borax is the Strontium 90 of insecticides. A bit mixed 50/50 with sugar or honey, placed on a moistened cotton ball will rid your kitchen counter of ants.

A friend once had, due to slob neighbors, a cockroach infestation. Poured a thin line of borax all around the apartment border and no more problem.

Don't think it would be especially safe for pets but it's a damn sight safer than Raid, etc. To keep cats, etc. from licking it, use sugar instead of honey on cotton balls.

Yes, it is VERY effective cleaning textured tub floors. Dampen tub floor, sprinkle Borax liberally. Wait patiently. Scrub the hell out of it. Might have to repeat for REALLY bad scum stains. Maybe an overnight treatment.

Cheap, safe, effective, what more can one ask for?
I am going to get some Borax. It's affordable and just a little bit works wonders. I want to get it to make my own laundry detergent because I am fed up of some of these expensive brands that leave irritants in the clothes.
Anonymous said…
thank u l will try as just started apartment living and need some help with the tub

Anonymous said…
Couldn't agree more!!!!! Vinegar, Dawn and essential oil works wonders and smells awesome.
Anonymous said…
I know this must sound stupid but do you wet the dryer sheets first.. or wipe dry? and I'm not Blond lol
Anonymous said…
.
Anonymous said…
I mix equal parts of Peroxide, and White Vinegar, and after every shower I spray the shower, and the tub. It works in soap scum, and mineral deposits. When I clean the bathroom in the week ends, I really don't have to scrube the shower or tub, just wipe , and rinse.
Judy said…
I work for a cultured marble company. We suggest putting Rain-X on your shower doors to help keep away the hard water build-up and suggest using car wax (Turtle Wax) to help the water sheet off of your cultured marble shower surrounds. Prevention helps keep the clean-up much easier for the future.
Anonymous said…
I tried using borax for fleas and it might have done an okay job, but it ruined my vacuum. Beware.
Anonymous said…
For fleas try Diatomaceous Earth (food grade is best) use it in the yard, carpets, and in the food , good for many things

Kristin said…
For those of you with children and pets, do not use borax to kill pests. Instead, use diatomaceous earth. It's natural and non toxic. Sprinkle it around baseboards, on carpet, and let it sit a while.
mambus said…
For fiberglass, use a few drops of Tide liquid detergent and a soft sponge.
Anonymous said…
My name is Kelsey, and I just want to say thank you for this tip! Nothing has worked for my tub until now. I can't believe the difference Borax made; I get squeamish just thinking about how dirty and gross my tub was!
Anonymous said…
Be careful using a Magic Eraser. They can and do damage surfaces.
Anonymous said…
Borax is the only thing I haven't tried in the bathroom! We have stone tile and very rusty water, but I'm going to try the Borax. Wow! First time EVER I can't wait to clean the bathroom! HA
Anonymous said…
Cerama Bryte is the best thing for soap scum. I tried it tonight for the first time in dirty shower doors and am amazed! I'm a professional cleaner and this blew me away!
Anonymous said…
Thanks for the great idea. I also have the tub from .... And, for your carpet, go to the dollar store and buy a bottle of cleaner called 'Awesome'...it really is and will clean almost anything out of your carpet. Dried paint out of my daughter's carpet.
Jonimae said…
DO NOT USE BAR SOAPS when you take a shower. Bar soaps tend to leave soap scums. Use shower gel and liquid soaps instead.
Anonymous said…
Borax works on insects because it is a dessicant, it sucks the water right out of their little bodies.
Anonymous said…
That Dawn an vinegar don't work for $#*T an yes I did warm it up on the stove, an wiped, an scrubbed, an used it in a spray bottle an sponged.
Anonymous said…
@ Cathy York, your a little behind the times. Bar soap does NOT contain any Talc because it's a banned chemical that causes Cancer. Lye has been used in ALL bar soaps since the 1800's and is the main ingredient for cleaning. The rest of the bar is just a carrier for the Lye and most of the time is made from lard or animal fat.