The Stovetop Cleaning Hack That'll Make You Love Your Magic Eraser

Cooking up a storm is a lot of fun, but the resulting cleanup is a bit of a pain. While sautéing vegetables and searing chicken can make you feel like a contestant on "Top Chef," the grease splatter that inevitably follows puts a damper on the cooking experience. And if you're the type of person that doesn't rush to clean up a mess, then you know firsthand that the mess you leave behind can turn into impossible-to-remove grime. But a Magic Eraser might be able to help with that.

Messy stovetops are usually unavoidable in a kitchen, and it happens whether you have traditional gas burners or a sleek electric stove. And while other cleaning solutions will have you scrubbing and chipping away at the concrete-like burnt grease, a Magic Eraser will eliminate the need for that level of muscle power. Here's how to pull it off with minimal time and effort. 

How to use a Magic Eraser to remove grease splatter

The first thing to do before you tackle your grease splatter is to take your Magic Eraser and cut it in half with a pair of scissors. That way, you can get double the cleaning power for the price of one. The first half of the sponge can tackle the worst of the grime, and once it's sufficiently dirtied, you can come in with the untouched second half to clean up the leftover bits.

Wet your Magic Eraser, squeeze out excess moisture, and apply it to your grease stain. Begin to scrub it as you would with a regular sponge, applying medium pressure. You should immediately see the grease begin to flake off and disappear. If you have a large amount of buildup, remove the flaking residue with a wet paper towel so as not to dirty the sponge more than you need to. Continue until the spot has completely disappeared, trading out sponges when one becomes too dirty. If it's a stubborn mess, let a soapy washcloth sit on the grease stain for a few minutes before trying again. Once the grease has been removed, wipe clean with a little soap and water. 

Why it works

The reason Magic Erasers work so well at lifting stovetop stains has to do with its composition. It doesn't have any special cleaning products within its sponge — instead, the power comes from the sponge itself, which is made from melamine. Specifically, it's made from melamine resin foam, which contains tiny abrasives.

Because of this, the sponge acts more like ultra-fine sandpaper than a regular scrub brush. In fact, it's about the equivalent of 3,000-grit sandpaper, which isn't strong enough to take the finish off of something, but it is strong enough to avoid using it on glossy surfaces like marble, stainless steel, laminate, or wood. It can end up scratching it if you use it for too long of a time. But it's that abrasive quality that makes it so effective on burnt-on grease. Rather than dissolving the grime, it simply sands it off, leaving a clean stovetop behind.