This semester has flown by and, in just a few days, winter break will begin. I have put off getting some things done around the house, and cannot wait to finally have the time to tackle the to-do list. While incredibly unglamorous, one of the things I’m looking forward to most is being able to give the whole house a really deep clean, starting with the bathrooms.

My usual routine involves scrubbing the floors and cleaning the surfaces, leaving the fixtures and shower curtains with a quick wipe-down and an “I’ll-do-a-deeper-clean-later.” With break just around the corner, later has finally arrived. If you’re ready to give your bathroom a deeper clean, try using some of these tips.

For plastic shower curtains, first gather a few towels that need to be washed. Then, remove the shower curtain and toss it in the washing machine with the towels, which will act like scrubbers in the cycle.

Wash using the “super” or “large” load setting, along with the appropriate amount of detergent for that level. When the wash cycle is finished, dry the towels as usual, but hang the curtain back in place. If you have a fabric curtain, follow manufacturer instructions for cleaning.


Fixtures, like faucets and showerheads, can also use a deep clean. They collect lime-scale and hard-water sediment over time. For protected-metal fixtures such as those made of chrome or stainless-steel, start by gathering some materials: a liquid measuring cup, white vinegar, plastic sandwich bags, rubber bands, toothpicks and an old toothbrush. You’ll use the same method whether you are cleaning your faucet, showerhead, or other fixture.

Start by heating the vinegar in the microwave until lukewarm. Then, pour the vinegar into the sandwich bag. Wrap the bag around the fixture, and secure with a rubber band. There should be enough liquid inside that the fixture is submerged, but with enough excess baggage at the top to allow you to secure it to the fixture. Allow the fixtures to soak in the vinegar for one hour.

Then, remove the bag. Scrub the fixture with the toothbrush, rinsing with clean water as you go. If there are any deposits lodged into tight crevices or spray holes, remove them with the toothpicks. If your fixtures are made of material that changes over time, like oil-rubbed bronze or brass, refer to manufacturer instructions for cleaning. As usual, test cleaning products on small, inconspicuous spots first.

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