Clean Soap Scum Naturally

Today I want to share with you how I clean my shower and tub and remove soap scum naturally.  First let’s chat a bit about this evil foe we call scum.  It’s basically what we call the mineral deposits that accumulate in the shower/bath area due to hard water and talc build-up.  The easiest way to clean the shower is by not allowing soap scum to build up in the first place.  This way you can clean without using too much elbow grease.

Clean Soap Scum Naturally

I mentioned talc buildup and guess what contains talc?  Bar soaps.  Making the change to liquid soap will diminish considerably the amount of scum build-up in the shower area.

The following recipes are easy, effective and natural.

Daily Cleaning to prevent soap scum build-up:

I like to spray down my shower as soon as I finish showering.  I keep a spray bottle in the shower with just vinegar and a few drops of lemon essential oil.

Lemon is great for cleaning but it also helps to counter the vinegar smell.  The vinegar smell will evaporate, but the clean lemon scent remains.

Clean Soap Scum Naturally

Keep a squeegee in the shower area.  My squeegee adheres to the wall and I use it every time I shower.  It’s quick and saves me so much time cleaning.

Cleaning the shower when soap scum has already taken hold:

Clean Soap Scum Naturally

If you already have considerable soap scum build-up, like in my boys bathroom since they don’t wipe down their bathroom, then we need a stronger cleaner.  As Emeril would say, let’s kick it up a notch.  I combine a mixture of 1 1/2 cups of vinegar and 1/2 cup of dish soap and a few drops of essential oil.  I spray down the whole tub, including the fixtures and I allow it to work for a few hours.  Then I scrub and rinse the shower area.  You may have to rinse a few times since there is soap in this mixture.  I usually scrub and rise right before taking a shower so that I can really get in there since I’m…well…in there.

The difference is pretty amazing and proves that you don’t need toxic cleaners to keep a clean home.  I guess that scum won’t mess with us!

Note:  I would not use this recipe to clean marble, since it stains so easily.  I would use this recipe for soap scum on bathroom tile, tub, and fixtures.


Related posts : 5 Places that we Forget to Clean in the Bathroom







  1. Melissa Hebbard says

    Hi Maria. You are showing this with a marble wall. I have been led to believe that vinegar is bad for marble and etches it. Can you please clarify this?

    • Maria says

      You are right Melissa! Marble stains easily. This is just the background that I used to photograph the “ingredients” because it was a clean background and the picture looked really busy otherwise. I would not use this recipe to clean marble, only soap scum on bathroom tile, tub, and fixtures. Thanks for bringing that up so that I could clarify. I just added a little blurb about that to the post.


  2. says

    Have you found a spray bottle that actually works for your mixture? I’ve gone through 4 styles and they all are terrible! They never seem to actually spray and I wind up having to splash and pour the mixture all over my walls and tub. But I’m determined to find a good spray bottle that actually works to save my sanity. :)

    • Maria says

      I know what you mean. Same thing happens to me with pretty soap dispensers, they rarely work. I prefer to use glass spray bottles because sometimes I add lemon essential oil; although it’s so diluted that I am not sure it matters. I added a link to the blog for the glass spray bottle I use.

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