Remove Stubborn Soap Scum With The Most Common Kitchen Ingredient Out There

Soap scum— that stubborn layer of film that clings to shower doors, sinks, and more, resisting the best cleaning efforts and tainting the appearance of our bathrooms. It forms when the oil-based ingredients in soap interact with the mineral properties of water, especially hard water. This mix then combines with dead skin and hair, body oil, and other shower bacteria to finally leave behind that nasty residue, also called lime soap. It's very attractive to mold and mildew, which can become problematic if left untreated. The solution — simpler than you think!

As it turns out, the best way to get rid of soap scum might be in your kitchen right now — good old-fashioned salt. While salt is often considered a culinary ingredient, its properties go beyond enhancing flavor. Salt is a natural abrasive and, when combined with the right components, can act as a potent cleaning agent. Its coarse, granular texture makes it perfect for scrubbing away persistent residues without causing damage to surfaces. Just beware of using it on any "soft" natural stone surfaces, as it may scratch.

You can whip up an efficient salt-based cleaning solution using a few simple household ingredients. All you need for this cleaning paste is salt, baking soda, white vinegar, a bowl, and a sponge or scrubbing brush. To prevent soap scum from accumulating, you would ideally use this weekly. Scrubbing off a month's worth of dirt build-up is much harder than cleaning up lighter layers that have accumulated over a few days.

How to clean soap scum with salt and a few simple ingredients

The first step to creating the cleaning solution is to combine one part baking soda and two parts vinegar in a bowl. Baking soda has a base pH perfect for tackling sticky things like dirt and grease, while vinegar is acidic and able to break down mineral compounds. Together, they are a cleaning powerhouse. The blend of the two will result in a normal fizzing chemical reaction. Once it's settled, add salt to the mixture to form a thick paste; this consistency will ensure the solution clings to soap-scum spots during cleaning.

Using a sponge or brush, apply the paste to the affected areas. Gently rub it in, ensuring that the entire surface area covered in soap scum gets a good dose of your homemade cleaning agent. The combination of salt, baking soda, and vinegar will get to work, penetrating the soap scum layer. Once you've applied the mixture, let it do its magic for about half an hour to allow the ingredients to really get into the grime and start the breaking-down process.

After the wait, it's time to do the grand reveal! Using water, rinse off the paste. You should notice that the soap scum slides off with ease. Make sure to dry off the area to prevent water stains. For any stubborn spots, a gentle reapplication and scrub should do the trick. Indeed, sometimes the most effective solutions are the simplest and most readily available.