Tips To Clean Your Way From Grimy To Glamorous Zellige Tiles

Zellige tiles are a traditional Moroccan tilework that have been around for centuries. They are a popular choice for creating stunning feature walls, backsplashes, and other decorative accents while also adding a touch of elegance. These hand-cut and glazed terra cotta tiles are known for their vibrant colors, intricate patterns, and unique texture. Because they are handmade, no two tiles are ever the same. However, zellige tiles are more delicate and porous than other types of tiles, meaning they require special care and attention when it comes to cleaning and maintenance.

Over time, dirt, grime, and other stains can accumulate on the surface of zellige tiles, dulling their luster and detracting from their beauty, especially in high-traffic areas. To keep them looking their best, it's important to know how to clean them properly. In this article, we'll share tips and tricks to help you maintain the stunning beauty of your zellige tiles for years to come and help you clean your way from grimy to glamorous.

Cleaning glazed zellige tiles

Glazed tiles have a protective layer of glass on top of the clay body, making them more resistant to stains, scratches, and wear. Glazed zellige tiles are more durable than unglazed tiles but still require careful cleaning to avoid damaging the glaze. A mild cleaning solution and gentle scrubbing will keep your glazed zellige tiles looking their best.

Sweep, vacuum, or wipe the surface of the tiles to remove any loose dirt or debris. Mix a solution of warm water and a mild, pH-neutral cleaner. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the surface of the tiles. Dip a soft-bristled brush or mop into the cleaning solution and gently scrub the tiles in a circular motion. Make sure to cover the entire surface of the tiles, including any grout lines. Mix a paste of baking soda and water for tougher stains and apply it to the stained area. Let the paste sit for 10 to 15 minutes before scrubbing it with a soft-bristled brush. To ensure that no soap or cleaning residue is left on the tiles, it is essential to rinse them well with clean water. After rinsing the tiles, using a towel to dry them is advisable.

Cleaning unglazed zellige tiles

On the other hand, unglazed tiles have a natural, porous surface, meaning they absorb moisture and stains more easily. Therefore, this requires a different, slightly gentler approach along with regular sealing. To preserve the quality of the tiles, it is advisable to stick to the suggested cleaning methods to ensure no harm comes to the tiles' surface.

Before cleaning the tiles, make sure to get rid of dirt and debris by sweeping them. Create a cleaning solution by mixing equal parts of warm water and white vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the tiles and let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes to allow it to penetrate and loosen dirt and stains. Scrub the surface with a soft-bristled brush or mop using gentle pressure to avoid causing any damage. Rinse the tiles thoroughly with clean water to remove any remaining cleaning solution and debris. Dry the tiles with a soft towel to absorb as much moisture from the porous surface as possible before leaving them to air dry completely.