Homemade Shower Cleaner

posted by Andrea | 02/1/2012

A few weeks ago, I shared how I keep our showers clean in about 10 minutes a month. I mentioned that although I try to use mostly homemade cleaners in and around our house, I still hadn’t found a great homemade cleaner for the shower.

Well, after that, I got a bunch of emails with different “recipes” for homemade shower cleaner; and although I was skeptical, I decided to try a few of them out.

Anyway, after experimenting these past 2 weeks (yes, our shower is now extremely clean) I’ve picked my favorite… and it’s REALLY simple!! 

Recipe for Homemade Shower Cleaner

Thanks to Anna for sending me this “recipe”!

Step #1: Pour 1-2 c. of white vinegar into a plastic spray bottle

Step #2: Heat it up in the microwave until very warm. {you do NOT need to reheat it every time you want to clean your showers}

Step #3: Pour 1 T. of Dawn dish soap into the spray bottle.

Step #4: Put the top of the spray bottle on and gently shake until they are combined.

That’s it!!

Just 2 simple ingredients and about 5 minutes of your time and you have a very inexpensive, homemade shower cleaner that works wonders on soap scum and smells great too!

NOTE: This cleaner is also great for removing greasy buildup in the kitchen!

Do you have any other great homemade cleaning recipes?

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193 comments

  1. Tammy

    02/01/2012

    Can you use this on granite or slate? I dont think you can use vinegar on either of those?
    Thanks so much!
    Tammy

    [Reply]

  2. Annie

    02/01/2012

    Why do you heat up the vinegar?

    [Reply]

    Sherri Reply:

    Probably to make the soap dissolve into it.

    [Reply]

  3. Brooke

    02/01/2012

    Question: Does this affect grout? This looks like a great idea, but I am worried about messing with the color of my grout!

    [Reply]

    Anna Reply:

    We have colored grout in out shower but this cleaner hasn’t messed it up.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I can’t imagine this would affect the color of your grout… but we have white grout so I don’t have experience with any other colors. It’s just vinegar and dish soap so I don’t see why it would mess up the color??

    [Reply]

  4. Starla

    02/01/2012

    Another question… will any kind of dish-soap work? Any thing other than Palmolive makes my dishrags STINK within hours. Yes, I’ve tried sticking them in the microwave, spraying them with white vinegar etc. etc. etc. It might be our water, but anyway, I don’t usually have Dawn on hand and just wondered if any type of dish-soap works.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    When I was looking around for different “recipes” it specifically called for Dawn dish soap. I happened to have some in the house so I used it for this recipe and it worked great. You could always try it with another type and see if it works or not.

    [Reply]

    Susan E. Reply:

    Starla, have you tried soaking your dish cloths in a bleach solution in the washer before washing them? I had a similar problem with my kitchen linens and my mom told me to set the washer on hot and add about a 1/3 to a 1/2 cup of bleach (for a large load). Do not add detergent. Once the washer fills, add your towels and let them soak for 15-30 minutes (no agitation), then turn the washer on and let the cycle finish. After it stops, rewash in hot, but add detergent this time and wash like normal. I do this with my kitchen linens every other week and it has helped keep the stink down.

    [Reply]

  5. Tanya

    02/01/2012

    I have iron in my water, so my tub looks a little yellowish. Do you know if this will help with the yellow tint?

    Thank you so much!
    Tanya

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Tanya, I honestly have no experience with iron in our water so I can’t be sure. However, it can’t hurt to give it a try!

    [Reply]

    karen Reply:

    I know this isn’t homemade, but “bar keepers friend” (walmart) works great.
    Also, lemon pledge on glass shower doors will clean soap scum off. Just let sit for 20 minutes.

    [Reply]

  6. Theresa Powers

    02/01/2012

    I had to giggle at this! This combination of soap and vinegar also kills weeds in the garden. Works best when the sun is blazing, they die within hours. We only use it in rocks, don’t use it on grass or your food garden. Theresa

    [Reply]

    Miranda Reply:

    Thanks for that tip, Theresa!

    [Reply]

  7. sarah

    02/01/2012

    So cool!!! Just this morning after my shower I was thinking that I needed to look up a homemade shower spray. Thanks!

    If your willing to share I need a kitchen spray, not so much a degreaser I will use this recipe but more of a sanitizer????
    :)

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Sarah, I just use a spray bottle with 1/2 vinegar and 1/2 water to clean my kitchens and bathrooms. The vinegar is a natural disinfectant… so that should do the trick. Also, the vinegar smell fades after a few minutes!

    [Reply]

    KimH Reply:

    I use about 1/4 cup bottled lemon juice (or you can use fresh if you like) to about 1/2 cup white vinegar added to about 3 or 4 cups of water. I use an old Clorox Green Works bottle and it lasts forever & does a great job of sanitizing and as a degreaser.

    I use it in the bathroom too.

    [Reply]

  8. Carley

    02/01/2012

    What a simple solution! I, too, have been trying to figure out a way to clean our shower with homemade cleaners. I have been using vinegar and water mixed, but that wasn’t working the best. I will give this a try. Thank you!

    [Reply]

  9. S C

    02/01/2012

    I used this in my shower and was impressed. Then I tried using it to clean my dishwasher – bad idea – not for use in the dishwasher!!!

    [Reply]

    Cheryl T. Reply:

    You can make your own dishwasher detergent – I make homemade and it works perfectly!

    [Reply]

    Amy Reply:

    I use just baking soda with a little down for dishwasher detergent and it works great! (I do use jet dry, though people say you can use vinegar for that, I didn’t have much luck with that) Hope that helps!

    [Reply]

    amy Reply:

    *dawn not down lol

    [Reply]

  10. Jennifer

    02/03/2012

    How do you use this recipe? Do you spray and let set before rinsing off or do you spray and rinse? thank you

    [Reply]

  11. dianne

    02/03/2012

    Written instructions say Dawn DISH soap, yet photo showcases Dawn antibacterial HAND soap.

    [Reply]

    Cheryl T. Reply:

    I think they are the same. I have a blue Dawn that says “dishwashing liquid” and an orange Dawn that says “hand soap” AND “dishwashing liquid.” This green Dawn in the picture also says “dishwashing liquid” in smaller letters under the “hand soap”.

    [Reply]

    Susan Reply:

    It says antibacterial hand soap is because it’s not antibacterial on your dishes, just your hands. My ex works for a company that makes dish soap and he explained this to me.

    [Reply]

  12. Keri M.

    02/05/2012

    This reminds me of that episode of Friends where Monica has a wonderful recipe for a household cleaner and she is really hyper-protective of it and won’t tell anyone the exact recipe. For the last decade or two, I’ve been wondering what that recipe would include. If I had to guess, I would say it’s close to yours, Andrea, but with maybe a bit of baking soda for scouring (?)

    I’m glad you are more willing you share your fun discoveries!

    Keri

    [Reply]

  13. Chrissy

    02/06/2012

    I just tried this and it was very soapy. Are you sure it’s a 1:1 ratio? Worked good in the shower, so I will probably continue to use for that. Will probably try the vinegar/water/lemon mix for kitchen. Do you have a recipe that gets soap scum off glass shower doors?

    [Reply]

  14. Do-It-Yourself: Homemade Shower Cleaner :: Money Saving Mom®

    02/09/2012

    [...] shows you how to make homemade shower cleaner. Do you have a fun and frugal DIY idea to share? I’d love to hear about it! Read the [...]

  15. Lauren

    02/09/2012

    I have been looking for a recipe for homemade shower cleaner, so I will definitely give this one a try.

    [Reply]

  16. Debbie Patt

    02/09/2012

    I have been making my own homemade “Febreeze” for about 20 years now! I take an empty spray bottle and add about 1inch of a good fabric softener. I fill the rest of the bottle with very hot water, shake and use! I use this on my carpet, drapes, furniture, and where ever I need it. You may need to add a little more fabric softener, depending on the size of your spray bottle.

    [Reply]

  17. Kelley

    02/09/2012

    Looking for any ideas to help clean a glass shower door that has hard water stains. I have tried everything that I can think of at this point. Thanks for any suggestions

    [Reply]

    Christina Reply:

    I have found 1/4 c vinegar, 2 c water and 1/2 tsp of dish soap works wonders!

    [Reply]

    Kelley Reply:

    Thanks! Gonna give this a try. We have never had issues whereever we lived in the past so I was not sure what to use. Thanks again!

    [Reply]

    Clinton Michael Reply:

    Get horticultural grade vinegar/acetic acid (roughly 20% acetic acid). It’s expensive, but a little goes a long way. Also, make sure your bathroom is well ventilated. Wearing gloves, spray on, scrub off, rinse well. It will damage tile grout if you don’t rinse it well. After you get the glass very clean, seal it with a Rain-X type glass protectant. Hope this helps.

    [Reply]

    SHAWN Reply:

    Clinton, Where can I find this horticultural grade vinagar? Walmart? and if so what department, cleaners or grocery? Thanks so much for this information. I have glass shower doors and have tried everything, so I am really hoping this works and you are so right on the Rain-X – I will definately be doing that if I can get it cleaned cause this has been a nightmare and I never want this problem again. THANK YOU!

    [Reply]

    Shawnie Reply:

    Kelley – I have had great success with powder dishwashing detergent and a green scratch pad – takes the soap scum right off a shower door. I am anxious to try this vinegar method with dawn though! :)

    [Reply]

    Margery Reply:

    I found a miracle for clear glass shower doors! Buy an inexpensive aquarium cleaner at any pet store. Use it with just about any cleaner, and scrub the scum and water deposits away. Rinse or squeegee when done. So quick.

    [Reply]

  18. Shannon

    02/09/2012

    Do you have to spray and scrub or just spray and rinse?

    [Reply]

  19. Ashlea

    02/09/2012

    Is the vinegar heated just to dissolve the soap or must you use this while it’s warm to be effective? I have a few homemade recipes that require them to be made right before using them while still warm, that’s why I’m asking. Thanks!

    [Reply]

  20. Melanie

    02/09/2012

    I discovered my favorite tub/shower cleaner a couple of months ago: http://www.thelittlegreenhomemaker.com/my-new-favorite-smell-good-tub-scrubber. It uses baking soda, so if it’s really grimy, you can easily scrub the soap residue off! On our glass shower doors I use a mixture of vinegar and water (though I heard that adding a tiny bit of rubbing alcohol can help with really bad residue).

    @Tammy, for any natural stone, you should use a Ph-neutral cleaner. (I work at a stone fabricator and answer that question a lot!) :)

    [Reply]

  21. Erin

    02/09/2012

    I’d be interested to know if this could be put in an automatic shower cleaner, or if anyone has a recipe for automatic shower cleaner refills!

    [Reply]

  22. Heather

    02/09/2012

    I’m all about homemade cleaners…. I LOVE mine! However, WARNING! My husband is a ceramic tile contractor and acidic cleaners (vinegar is acidic) will strip away the sealer off of the grout over time!! YIKES! Also, if you happen to have NATURAL stone it should NEVER be cleaned with an acidic cleaner!!!!! Just a little FYI from a contractor! To preserve the seal on your grout and or natural stone do not use vinegar!

    [Reply]

    Kelley Reply:

    Thanks for this useful information!

    [Reply]

    Elizabeth Reply:

    It is mixed with soap– which I believe is a mild base! I wonder if you could test with PH test strips as you go and rework your proportions until you have a formula that is PH neutral?

    [Reply]

  23. Sarah

    02/09/2012

    Do you just spray this on and leave it after every shower? Or is it to use once a week and scrub and rinse off? Thanks!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I just spray it one and then scrub it off… and I usually only do it once a month :)

    [Reply]

  24. Homemade Shower Cleaner « annarjohnson

    02/09/2012

    [...] Simple Organized Living shows you how to make this very easy shower cleaner! [...]

  25. Camille

    02/09/2012

    I’ve been using this for years and have never heated it up. I just mix, shake and go. I use a ratio of 1/4 container of Dawn and 3/4 of the container white vinegar. It will make the metal in your shower SPARKLE! :-)

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks for the tip Camille — this would be an even more frugal {and faster} way to make it!

    [Reply]

  26. Sue

    02/09/2012

    I found it a specialty organic gardening center. It is used for weed control.

    [Reply]

  27. Homemade Shower Cleaner « Cheap@living

    02/09/2012

    [...] at Simple Organized Living has an excellent recipe for  Homemade Shower Cleaner. Frugal and much safer to be around. I always look for non-caustic alternatives, I just feel better [...]

  28. Pat

    02/10/2012

    I have been using my own recipe for over 10 years and it works great. I got the idea to use it when I found a recipe for cleaning chandeleirs where you just spray it on the chandeleir and it cleans the crystals. I thought, this would work in the shower since it cleans and you don’t need to rinse it!

    Here is my recipe:
    1 pint water
    1/4 c. rubbing alcohol
    1 T. dishwasher antispot agent

    [Reply]

    Shiloh Reply:

    You say that you have been using it for 10 years but only that you have used it for chandeliers. Have you tried using it on showers or windows?

    [Reply]

  29. Sheri M.

    02/11/2012

    I tried this 1/2 vinegar heated to 1/2 Dawn dish soap this morning to simply clean my shower. I did get an “added aerobic workout” in as there was so much suds and film, it took me about 30 minutes to remove it all, and finally just used straight vinegar to cut the soap. I will try it again, but I will add way more vinegar to cut down on the soap. As a cancer survivor, I am continually looking for healthier and more natural ways to do my cleaning. Thanks for the recipe, and my added “cardio workout”, which is also a good and healthy way to start your day! :):)

    [Reply]

  30. Joh

    02/11/2012

    We have hard water so we can get quite the build up. I use baking soda and Vinegar to clean. I don’t have an actual reciepe I follow. I just make a paste with it and scrub. I love it because it works, also because there are no harsh fumes and also I don’t have to worry about it leaving any harmful chemicals so my daughter or me can take a bath as soon as I am done.

    [Reply]

  31. Phill

    02/12/2012

    I use a product called Crystal Clear shower and glass treatment. It doesn’t clean the shower, it coats the shower with a fine film that prevents any soap scum from bonding to the surface.
    After showering or even next day all I do is rinse off with a wet cloth and fresh water and wipe dry. You can get it on the net at http://www.wizardcleaningproducts.com

    [Reply]

  32. JessicaLynn

    02/14/2012

    I’ve been trying to find a bleach-free bathroom cleaner since I first moved out of my mom’s house. I hate that icky bleach smell and it takes forever to go away. I literally JUST got done cleaning my shower/tub and it’s soooo clean now and smells good since there aren’t any harsh chemicals in the shower cleaner. I used Palmolive just because that’s the dish detergent I had on hand, but next time I will buy some Dawn just to make shower cleaner. Dawn wreaks havoc on my eczema but since I don’t clean my shower every day my hands should be fine, plus it just cuts through the grime so much better. Thank you so much for posting this “recipe”

    [Reply]

  33. Jordan Page

    02/21/2012

    Shared this on my post popular post of 2011! Thanks for the great idea!
    http://www.funcheaporfree.com/2011/12/youre-welcome-wednesday-tip-keep-your.html

    [Reply]

  34. Amy Kendall

    02/27/2012

    Just wondered how it does on a glass shower door? I’ve found cleaners that clean the shower, but leave residues on the glass. Does this clean ther door well without a residue? Thanks!

    [Reply]

  35. Gloria Sue Wilson

    03/02/2012

    I also wonder how it does on the glass shower doors? We just moved into a new happy bright house, and the glass shower makes me nerrrvvvvous! Also, does vinegar disenfect well?

    [Reply]

  36. heather

    03/03/2012

    Vinegar dries with no spots. I keep a jug in the bathroom for the mirror. It works wonderfuly!

    [Reply]

  37. Crystal

    03/10/2012

    I just tried this and it was good. Lots of film and suds though. So I’ll try what is suggested above and cut down the Dawn and add more vinegar.
    Thanks!

    [Reply]

  38. Witteney

    03/12/2012

    I just used this and didn’t have any film, hmmm…. It worked great! And vinegar is an excellent disinfectant. I became aware of a new lung problem caused mostly in women from bacteria forming in shower heads and they recommend you use vinegar and not bleach because bleach when in a warm, dark spot (such as a shower head) can breed more bacteria! I will be using vinegar for cleaning from now on

    [Reply]

  39. Marcie

    03/17/2012

    Forget the shower cleaner and just invest in some steel wool. Lightly go over soap scum in a circular motion – you’ll have it gone in seconds!

    [Reply]

  40. Natural Cleaners!! | amommymadeit.com

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