Homemade Soft Scrub Cleaner Recipe

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This easy, frugal homemade soft scrub cleaner is a versatile scouring powder that gets surfaces clean and grime-free.

Homemade Soft Scrub Recipe - No Castile Soap

Have you ever worn out your elbow trying to scrub that grimy ring around the bathtub? That’s what led me to create a Homemade Soft Scrub, because I love my bathtub but not the grime. It was also important to me to come up with a formula that was versatile enough to use on other surfaces, too.

It took a few tries, but this combination of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide, with a bit of dish soap and essential oil, is now one of my go-to cleaners. If you have those ingredients on hand, you can discover why I like it so much! Then read on for ways to use this homemade cleaner recipe in your home.

Homemade Soft Scrub Recipe

This creates a scouring paste that gently yet effectively removes stubborn messes, including water spots on your shower doors. It also cleans grimy surfaces, like the dirty ring in bathtubs or tough messes on faucets and taps.


  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 2 tbsp. dishwashing liquid
  • 2 tbsp. hydrogen peroxide
  • 6-8 drops of essential oil (optional)


  1. Combine the baking soda and dish soap, then stir in the hydrogen peroxide. Lastly, add the essential oils if you’re using them.
  2. Dampen a microfiber or other cleaning cloth with water, then add a small amount of homemade soft scrub. Use this to rub the surface gently, then rinse it away with a spray of water or another clean, damp cloth.
  3. For greasy jobs, let the mixture sit on the spot for 5-10 minutes, apply elbow grease and a damp microfiber cloth, and rinse with hot water.
  4. Store any unused mixture in an air-tight container. It does not go bad. If it seems dry after storage, stir in a bit more hydrogen peroxide.

Which Essential Oil to Use?

Essential oils are optional in my homemade soft scrub recipe, but certain oils can provide added benefits. For instance, peppermint essential oil deters spiders and has mild antibacterial properties. Tea tree oil is even better at combating bacteria. But if you have dogs or cats, avoid using these on surfaces where they walk or sleep because some essential oils aren’t pet-safe.

Where to Use Homemade Soft Scrub

This cleaner is super versatile and features a gentle abrasion that scours through grime on various hard household surfaces. Used with a microfiber cloth or cleaning sponge, it does not scratch, so it’s safe on acrylic and other plastics, rubber, wood, glass, and stainless steel.


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  1. You always have the best recipes and ideas for efficient and healthier ways to keep my home clean and smelling great! Thank you for your time and wonderful work, I truly appreciate all thst you do~💐

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Thank you so much for the kind words, Sabrina! I’m so happy you like them. ❤️

  2. Definitely going to try this. Thank you, Katie.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      You’re welcome!

  3. I wish I could pin this, but the extension doesn’t work since upgraded to Windows 11.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Hi Deb,
      I’m sorry you’re having problems with extensions. It’s always helped me to disable them, relaunch the browser, and re-enable them. In the meantime, here’s where I pinned it if you want to take it from there. 🙂

  4. Hi Katie….I have some Arm and Hammer natural washing soda on hand. Can this be used in place of the baking soda? I’m looking forward to making my own cleaning products. Thank you for a very informative website.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Hi Marilyn! That would work just fine since washing soda is ultimately baking soda with the water and carbon dioxide cooked off.

  5. When it says liquid dish detergent, do you mean like dish soap or dishwasher liquid soap?

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Hi Lori,
      This recipe uses liquid dish soap. I use Dawn Original. Sorry for any confusion.

  6. Stephanie B. says:

    This is the BEST cleaner, EVER! I used it today to clean out my sink, and it leaves a beautiful shine afterwards, too. I cannot say THANK YOU enough – your website is permanently bookmarked for me. I use your any-type floor cleaner for all kinds of things, not just floors – I scent mine with peppermint, and it works fantastically – you ROCK!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I’m so glad you like the cleaners, Stephanie! Peppermint is one of my favorite scents to use because it makes the house smell so happy. Enjoy!

  7. Mummy Pig says:

    The soft scub cleaner is brilliant 🙂

    I used an organic dishwashing soap with orange essentials oils in it and my kitchen smells amazing!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I bet it smells divine!

  8. I am going to have to try this homemade soft scrub cleanser. I recently bought a new Maytag smooth top range and you can really get some tough, cook-on gunk on the top. You can buy stove-top cleaner at the store but it is fairly expensive. I am going to try this instead of the name brand stuff.

    1. Stephanie B. says:

      I used it on my smooth top range today, and it left a brilliant shine behind! I love how it cleaned it, BUT, I read on a car care website recently, that vinegar can pit windshield glass if used as a de-icer. I wonder if it can do the same thing to stove tops. Might be worth looking into more.

  9. Small Town Mommy says:

    These are great recipes and so much less expensive than Soft Scrub.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Yes, it’s much less expensive and not toxic!

  10. Raquel@2dayswoman says:

    This is awesome and another tip I’m very keen to try-perhaps on my kitchen sink this weekend 🙂 No nasty chemicals either. Love all of your tips Katie!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Thank you, Raquel! I’m fanatic about cleaning my kitchen sink. It’s old, and if I don’t stay on top of it the thing stinks up my kitchen. This recipe saves me a fortune as a result!