Homemade Soap Scum Remover

Homemade soap scum remover from HousewifeHowTos.com
If it weren’t for my homemade soap scum remover, we’d have to remodel the bathroom. I mean it.

See, I hate our glass shower door! Some things a girl just wants to keep hidden…like how her flabby bits wobble when she bends to shave her legs. Or how much soap scum collects on the shower doors between serious cleanings.

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Well, I haven’t had much luck doing anything about the flabby bits, but this mix sure got rid of the soap scum fast!

Homemade Soap Scum Remover


  • Dawn original dish soap
  • White vinegar heated until VERY hot
  • An empty spray bottle
  • A microfiber cloth (or extension shower scrubber if you have a bad back)
  • A measuring cup


1. Using the measuring cup, add equal parts VERY hot vinegar and Dawn dish soap to the spray bottle. You may want a funnel to do this.
2. Heavily spray the shower door or surface that you want to clean. The solution will cling. That’s good.
3. Let sit 30 minutes to overnight.
4. Wipe clean with the microfiber cloth, or extension scrubber, and warm water.
5. Scrubbing hard probably won’t be necessary, but if there are particularly stubborn spots go at them with a stiff-bristled brush.

That’s it!

Now, don’t stop here. Be sure to clean any shower mold and mildew that remains–though, if your vinegar is hot enough this mixture will knock that stuff out anyway. And don’t forget to clean your shower head, too.

You can make these part of your weekly bathroom cleaning, or just do it when things start looking nasty.

Once your shower is spic and span, keep it that way using a daily homemade shower spray. It takes just seconds to use after the final shower of the day and it will keep that yucky soap scum and mildew from recurring.

After all, wouldn’t you rather spend just a few seconds preventing a mess than hours cleaning one? I sure would!

Equipment I’ve Used For This:


  1. says

    It works so well! Our shower door was naaaaaaasty when we first moved in. (Naturally, it was sparkling clean when we bought the place. Go figure.) I fought with and fussed about the soap scum for ages before trying this. Best part, we were homeschooling back when I first tried this, and I got distracted by our school day after spraying it on. When I came back that evening and saw my shower door still goopy, I was certain I’d just made more work for myself, but it was just the opposite! The stuff wiped right away, and took the soap scum with it. Hooray!

  2. says

    I shall give this a try.  I’ve got some on our shower door that I keep looking at… Luckily it’s just a film and the door doesn’t have a metal surround where black gook builds up.  When I work up the energy to do it, I’ll let ya know how it goes 😉

  3. Shell says

    Definitely going to have to try this- we have a curtain, not doors, but we get lots of soap scum on the tiles in the shower itself. Thanks!

  4. Margi Lowry says

    And to keep that shower door clean after you get the soap scum off, use a squeegee after every shower.  We use one in ours and it only takes a couple of seconds to get ‘er done right after you turn off the tap!

    • says

      I really need to get better about using the squeegee. My husband refuses to use it, but since my showers follow his it doesn’t really matter. The question is always: have I had my coffee yet? If not, then my brain just can’t wrap around cleaning.

  5. pixleelo says

    I just want to say that I just tried this recipe with Ivory diswashing soap because I don’t use Dawn and it worked just the same. If you really want to firm up the wobbly bits try a BarMethod Body class or DVD

    • Katie B. says

      What, actually exercise?! *sigh* Yes, I definitely need to start doing that. Thanks for letting me know Ivory worked just as well. I love that stuff, too!

  6. matthew B says

    Soap Scum Remover

    Used this the on Wed this week 20 nov2013, Got a cheap spray bottle from wall-mart and went to town. Here is the good an bad.
    Environment: My shower, standard shower/bathtub with shower curtain, nothing to note here.
    Last Clean: One month, two month THREE months, (in the voice of the Count) I cant really remember, 2 months I think. Been a big and I am in Central Texas, where the water is HARD people, and has enough fluoride I had yellow stains on my teeth as a kid. Again I digress
    Typical Cleaner Used: I live in a Apartment, middle High to High end, so while I clean and what my deposit back I don’t over do it. Usually as I take a shower I grab a Mr Clean Magic Eraser and scrub away, it has worked good but I always wondered if it disinfected or not, plus they cost a bit of cash, and I’m a Iraq Vet in college so money ain’t falling off of trees.

    Setup: So while I was using another item from this site (furniture polish and wax remover, I recommend that U try it at least once) I mixed the cleaner per instructions, and doubled the recipe to fill the whole spray bottle. I used White Vinegar, Walmart brand, water from the tap, and Palmolive Dish soap, (it had oxy clean in it, the only one I had at the house)more on that later.
    Heated Vinegar in Microwave for 5 mins, in Pyrex bowl, (filled bowl with regular water later and threw it in the Microwave to get the smell out. Worked good.)
    Mixed it all up and gave it a shake and prepped the bathroom
    Bathroom Area: We have (my wife and I ) a removable shower head which came in super awesome when cleaning time comes. So I removed all items and razors, brushes etc. And I took off my suction cup shave mirror, and two suction cups plastic corner shelves by OXO, (they are great shelves) but are covered in soap scum. I sprayed the mix all over and on the shelves inside everywhere.

    Here is where the Oxy in the soap I think came in, cause it was rough, and I have burned human poop in Iraq before. But It was fast spray.

    A hour later when back in with a Teflon safe old scrub pad. You know the type you can use on Calphalon Pans, and has a sponge side. So I took that and used water and that to clean it up.

    I will say it WORKS BETTER than anything else I have ever used, and I used all types of stuff. Even the plastic shelves which I had no hope for, were cleaned like brand new. Washed the excess off and let it all air dry.

    Now The not so good.
    You will need a funnel of some type, or you will have hot vinegar allover the place. Also get the good spray bottle at wall mart, the $1 is not worth it at all.
    The smell is hard to take, but that could of been the Oxy getting airborne, use any soap just don’t use that.
    Lastly get some surgery gloves or some protection, I work on cars all day but I did notice I have cracked knuckles when I finished, vinegar is strong stuff man
    I will say my show is a place of awesome now and I will do this over and over,

    Thank you this stuff is the best

  7. Sandra says

    I’ve just discovered this site and I’m finding it really helpful to become better organised. Thanks so much Katie for taking the time to set it up and maintain it. I have a question about your Soap Scum Remover. You say to use very hot vinegar when making it. Do you need to put it on the shower glass and tiles while it’s hot or does it work when cold also?

  8. Keeley says

    This was a miracle for my shower…I thought the staining (dirt and black mildew) in there was permanent, I’ve tried all types of cleaners on it. We are in a rental and the bathtub surround is super cheapo. The walls and tub are now white again. Thanks so much for providing such great tips on your site. I also used the hydrogen peroxide mix for the mildew and that helped a lot too. Planning to mix up the daily shower spray too :)

  9. Missed a spot says

    Love the site. Brilliant. I copied all the flowcharts to Evernote and use em on my iPad. No paper no ink.

    I just had to comment though after reading all the issues with soap scum. My solution is so brain dead simple. Stop using soap. We use liquid body wash. I shop the sales and just make sure I get stuff free of parabens and BHT. Burts Bees is one favorite. We put in a solid surface material in our tub shower to replace tile that had water leaking past the grout due to my over zealous attempts to keep mold and bacteria at bay. Since bar soap is made from fat which comes from tallow or lard it is food for pink slime bacteria. After ceasing the use of bar soap and putting in the fake marble surround my enclosure looks exactly the same as it did the day the installation was done. That was in 1996. I think I waxed it with a good quality car wax one time. We squeegee it after every shower. I also found that lady’s shave cream leaves scum in the tub so I started using bath gel instead. Works fine. Now I just need to figure out how to fix the flabby bits. Going try the recipe for the shower curtain liner. Usually I just buy a new one at Target every year or so. I was it in the washer using hot and buy the thinnest vinyl possible since its hidden. We have horrible nasty water that actually etches glass. What I though were water spots on our clear glass door are actually little pits. It happens to our windows too. I had a window washer tell me to not let water dry on the front window (sprinkler overspray blown by wind). Yeah right. So got rid of glass door and got curtain.

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