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Similar to the many other menial maintenance and household tasks that come with homeownership, cleaning your bathroom is oftentimes found at the very bottom of your chore list.

However, cleaning your bathroom can be important for your health and safety. A regular bathroom cleaning could help prevent illness and infection from mold, dust and bacteria that tend to collect in the more moist areas of your home, like your tub, sink and toilet.

Look, we’re not here to make cleaning bathrooms sound glamourous, but we want to make it a little easier for you with a list of five homemade bathroom cleaners that are safe and inexpensive. You may even find the ingredients for a few in your kitchen cupboards!

Different Types of Cleaners

While common household cleaners, like bleach and ammonia, are effective, they can also be hazardous, potentially causing irritation to the eyes, nose, throat and lungs, not to mention poisonous if ingested.

Natural household cleaners come in handy in a home where there are young children or elderly, as they are more likely to be sensitive to heavy chemicals. Not to mention, you may already have most natural household cleaners around your house.

Here’s what you can use:

  • Distilled white vinegar
  • Dawn dish soap
  • Baking soda
  • Essential oils
  • Castile soap
  • Vegetable oil

After checking your cupboards, let’s discuss how to make homemade bathroom cleaners and how to use them.

Shower, Bathtub and Drain

One piece of advice my mother passed on to me as I moved into my first home was to clean the shower and bathtub once a week – and boy, was she right! It’s not the easiest task, but it’s necessary to fight stains, soap scum and hard water deposits that can build up quicker than you think.

Luckily, the solution to clean your shower and bathtub is easier than you think. Here’s what you’ll need, according to One Good Thing:

  • One cup Dawn dish soap
  • One cup distilled white vinegar
  • 16-ounce spray bottle
  • Sponge


  • Heat up the white vinegar in a microwave-safe container until hot, and then pour the liquid into the spray bottle.
  • Add the Dawn dish soap.
  • Seal the spray bottle with the lid and then shake to mix.

Since vinegar tends to have a strong smell, make sure your bathroom is well-ventilated, turning on your fan and opening any nearby windows to air out the smell.

One Good Thing suggests applying the solution liberally around your tub, shower and showerhead; letting the mixture sit between 30 minutes to an hour; and then scrubbing with a sponge afterward. Rinse with water after scrubbing.

Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Vinegar, really?” I thought the same thing.

Turns out vinegar, a solution of acetic acid and water, is a great household cleaning tool – especially distilled white vinegar, a clear vinegar made from grain useful for removing stains and neutralizing odors. It’s a pretty useful tool to combat germs, dirt and grime.

However, it’s not a disinfectant. There are a lot of arguments surrounding the disinfectant capabilities of white vinegar; however, it can’t kill germs on surfaces or stop germs from reproducing.

Got a clogged drain? Channel your inner scientist and use a baking soda and vinegar solution. Anyone who’s completed a middle school volcano project will know that the chemical reaction will bubble up, breaking up any clogs and cleaning the drain naturally without using a harmful acidic solution that could potentially harm your pipes or sewer system.

Sink and Counters

No matter the material, cleaning the surfaces of your bathroom, like your sink, countertops and shelves, can be done by an all-purpose cleaner. Get the job done by first gathering these materials, suggested by Live Simply:

  • 2 cups warm water (the author suggested distilled water for a longer shelf life)
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons castile soap
  • 30 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 20 drops sweet orange essential oil
  • 16-ounce spray bottle


  • Pour the warm water and baking soda into the spray bottle, and then shake the bottle to combine the ingredients.
  • Add the castile soap and essential oils.
  • Shake the bottle again to combine.

Use liberally on your sink, countertops and even your bathtub, tile, toilet and floor if you’re looking for an all-in-one cleaner. Let it sit for a minute before wiping clean with a damp cloth.

Because the homemade cleaner doesn’t have preservatives, Live Simply suggested a week to two-week shelf life for this product.

Essential oils aren’t just for aroma therapy – they’re actually effective cleaning products. Tea tree essential oil, for example, can kill bacteria and sanitize the surfaces of your home. Any citrus essential oil is good for general home cleaning, and it’ll leave a fresh scent after each use.

Mirrors and Windows

For cleaning windows, mirrors, chrome and other shiny materials, you’ll need a gentle cleaning solution and a soft cloth so you don’t scratch your glass surfaces. You can make this with a pretty simple solution, according to Wellness Mama:

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 16-ounce spray bottle
  • Soft cloth (Wellness Mama suggested cutting up an old T-shirt)


  • Pour the warm water into the spray bottle.
  • Add the white vinegar.
  • Shake the spray bottle to mix the solution.

Wellness Mama recommended using two soft cloths to polish: one wet one to apply to solution to the surface and one for wiping/polishing.

The white vinegar, handy for removing stain and grime, will be able to clean your surfaces without using a harmful, harsh chemical. Additionally, using a soft cloth, as opposed to a paper towel, will prevent your surfaces from getting scratched.


Now for the dreaded toilet. One of the worst parts of cleaning your bathroom is when you’re hunched over, scrubbing a dirty toilet. Hopefully this mixture will make it an easier or less smelly process. Here’s what you’ll need, according to DIY Natural:

  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon tea tree essential oil
  • 16-ounce spray bottle
  • Sponge (toilet brush will also work)


  • Combine the tea tree essential oil and the distilled white vinegar into the spray bottle.

Shake the solution and then spray the solution into the inside of the toilet bowl and onto the toilet seat, lid and handle.

After allowing the solution to sit for a few minutes, sprinkle the baking soda into the inside of the toilet bowl, scrubbing with a sponge or toilet brush and wiping clean with a cloth or small towel. Use a separate cloth to wipe the solution off the seat, lid and handle.

The baking soda should fizz when sprinkled on the spray bottle solution, removing any stains from the surface of the toilet bowl, working with the tea tree essential oil and vinegar to remove thick grime as well.


Personally, I try to save the floors for last, since any dust or debris cleaned from the mirrors, light fixtures or counters may have fallen on the floor. Depending on whether you have wood or tile on your bathroom floor, the directions will vary, but here are a few ingredients to get you started, according to Wellness Mama:

  • 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 16-ounce spray bottle


  • A few drops of orange essential oil (depending on how strong you want the scent)
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda

Directions for Wood Floors

  • Combine the distilled white vinegar, vegetable oil and water in the spray bottle.
  • Shake the bottle to combine the solution.

Spray the solution and rub lightly into the floors to bring back the shine and clean any spots.

If you want to sweeten the deal, add a few drops of orange essential oil before you apply the solution to your floors to leave a fresh citrus scent behind.

Directions for Tile Floors

  • Combine a simple solution of equal parts water and white vinegar.

Apply the solution to your floors with a mop. Wellness Mama suggested using two tablespoons of baking soda for tougher stains.

By now you know that white vinegar will remove germs and bacteria, while baking soda acts as a natural scrub for the tougher stains and scum. Using the essential oils, which are also natural cleaners, is more for scent in this case, so use as desired.

Bathroom Odors

Make the clean feeling last longer by using natural bathroom deodorizers to keep your bathroom smelling fresh and clean.

Pine essential oil is one of the best natural home deodorizers. Using a cotton ball, add a few drops of pine oil and place the cotton ball at the bottom of a trash can, decorative basket or any other areas that are prone to odors.

Not only will this combat the smell, it can also potentially kill any bacteria that’s prone to growing in the smaller areas of your bathroom.

While cleaning your bathroom will never be a fun task, we hope these tips will save you some time or at least a trip to the grocery store, and they’ll likely help keep your home safe from chemicals found in traditional bathroom cleaners.

With the spring cleaning season just around the corner, do you use any DIY cleaners in your home? Share your secrets in the comments below!

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing such an informative and nice blog about bathroom cleaning. I am learning a lot from you and hicare.

    1. Hi Theresa:

      We did our research for this particular blog post and found that Dawn dish soap and white vinegar is safe to mix. A few things you don’t want to mix would be vinegar and bleach and hydrogen peroxide and vinegar, as they can be hazardous. I hope this helps!

  2. One thing many of these cleaning solutions is missing is rubbing alcohol. If you add rubbing alcohol it helps to strip off the dead skin cells etc from your tub and sinks.

  3. I’m trying to scrub off some mold stains/spots off the outside of an upright freezer. So far, I’ve tried lemon juice and salt, but it hasn’t worked. Think I’ll add some vinegar and baking soda.

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